Monthly Archives: April 2015

Will Australia follow the UK in the grocery price war?

The price wars in the UK have been ongoing for the past few years and market dynamics have changed the way supermarkets run. Ever since the German discount stores Aldi and Lidl have entered the marketplace things have had to change. Aldi has become a mainstream name in many households around the UK and the main place to shop due to its low prices on commodity items.Displays 2 Go - Supermarket wars

No longer are the well known brands such as Sainsbury’s and Tesco able to trade on their name alone, and simply offer weekly specials. They have had to embark on completely new strategies to lure back customers, setting aside enough cash resources to offer regular deeper price cuts to compete with Aldi. They’ve been forced to improve the quality of over 3000 products to try to differentiate themselves from the discount stores. This price war has damaged the big four supermarket chains drastically, where margins are reported to have fallen by 50% in the last 3 years.

The big question is: will Australia follow the UK and be forced into a more intense battle with the discount stores to maintain margins and market share?

Aldi opened its first store in Australia in 2001 and now have over 366 stores in NSW, Victoria and Queensland. A combination of cost-conscious shoppers and savvy marketing to families has encouraged more than half of Australian households to visit an Aldi store in 2014.

We are already starting to see an increase in the depth and frequency of weekly promotions and cut shelf prices on hundreds of food and grocery items amongst the big retailers. Over Easter, Coles and Woolworths slashed the prices of some products by as much as 50% to entice consumers.

Displays 2 Go - Price cutHowever, Woolworths have been advised by investment bank UBS not to embark on an all out price war. Instead, they’ve been told to follow a strategy that enables them to reduce shelf prices by 30% on a thousand product lines to overcome perceptions its prices are too high, thus protecting its margin and minimizing fallout.

But will this be enough?

One thing for sure is the German discount chain Aldi have huge investment plans for Australia, and with an increasing market share they are certainly becoming a force to be reckoned with. Aldi’s planned $700 million expansion to WA and SA is expected to increase growth drastically. In WA alone Aldi plans to open 70 stores over the next few years. The recent acquisition of the Captain Stirling shopping centre in Nedlands in Perth’s wealthy western suburbs just shows the commitment this company has to compete with retail giants Woolworths and Coles. Just across the road, Woolworths have been fighting a losing battle to gain council approval to get a foothold into the area.Displays 2 Go - Supermarket wars

If our grocery stores are not to be dragged into a price war, the key must be differentiation. It will be interesting to see the changes over the next 12 months as this happens, Will they radically change their product offerings or focus on shopper experience? Recent behavior from the big two suggests not. And as prices come under pressure, will our stores continue to come down even harder on suppliers to reduce costs? The next two years will be fascinating to observe.

If you would like to offer a better shopper experience to your customers then visit

Stepping into the light

When marketing a product, 93% of consumers identify visual appearance as one of the most important factors when shopping*. With this is mind, it is crucial that whatever you’re trying to sell or present is well lit and attracts attention.

Lighting Shop Display WindowTake a window display in a shopping mall for instance.  What gets you to turn your head and look? It could be a number of things: movement, colour or light, but one thing’s for sure; you would not even give the window a second glance if it was in pitch darkness.

So, what do you need to think about when you are lighting up a display? Here are a few tips to get you started:

– consider other colours to create drama, not just a white light

– use spotlights to pick out key information, brand imagery or to light up dark corners

– light up your brand logo so everyone knows who you are

– draw attention to your product by lighting the stand it sits on

– place light behind fabric to make it shine through the whole display

With this in mind, what products are out there to light up displays and get more attention?


LED lights are the preferred choice for illuminating most displays and exhibitions these days. Not only are they 80% more efficient than a normal light bulb, they last longer, are smaller in size and are more robust. All our stands can be fitted with LED lights to add more impact and really light up your message.

Brandstand NZ - Led Lighting DisplayThe low voltage lighting used in shop displays is also very effective, whether it’s lighting up an acrylic box, a poster or some shelving. The lights are all cantilevered with 180 degree adjustable heads enabling you to get the perfect position.


Give your image some depth and clarity with the illuminated light box. These innovative boxes are ultra slim and highly effective. They are the ideal display solution for retail outlets, exhibitions, restaurants, bars, airports and more. They come in all sorts of styles so can be used on a poster stand, a wall, a mirror or a writing board.

They run on a 12 volt system, so are easy to install, offer low heat output and don’t contain mercury, providing the smallest carbon footprint available.

Brandstand NZ - Lightbox


Displays 2 Go - portable plinthsUsing a display pedestal or plinth with in-built lighting is one of the most effective ways to draw attention to your display. The light can be directed upwards through the top of the plinth, shining on to any item sitting on top, or out through the sides of the plinth as well. As a general rule the plinth top will feature a frosted or colour tinted acrylic or Perspex, which will enable the light to shine through.

Our LED lighting modules can be supplied with a scroll-wheel remote, allowing you to achieve a wide variety of colour options to suit your individual environment and requirements.  Lights can be programmed to stay as a static colour, flash, or fade in and out, and even change from one colour to another.



The Lightbox plinths create a stunning effect.  They’re simple and stylish with an aluminium frame in combination with a hard-wearing, melamine-coated MDF top.  Three faces of the plinth are custom finished in your chosen corporate colour, logo or graphics, and the fourth face features a stylish light box sitting behind your graphic.

Brandstand NZ - lightbox plinthsAll images can be changed out with ease, giving you the flexibility to customise your promotional message or highlight a new product according to your specific requirements. A great solution for dark corners or to show off your products whilst sitting on a plinth.


Of course, if LED lighting doesn’t suit your needs there are other low voltage lighting options available.  These can be tailor made to your specific requirements so just give us a call and we can work out what you need.

The one thing to remember in all of this is that light and the visual appearance of your message, brand or product is critical to the way it is received by your customers, so ensure you make an informed decision to get the best results.

To discuss any of these options further, please give us a call on 1300 240 250  or drop us an email.

* Kissmetrics infographic