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The Key Stats

UPDATED AUGUST 2019: How much are low-sugar drinks growing ahead of the market in 2019? What are new products worth? Does England, Wales or Scotland sell more soft drinks? Check out the latest exclusive research here!

Soft drinks can be a difficult category to get right, but if you do, the rewards are great. To help understand it, Lucozade Ribena Suntory invests heavily in tracking and monitoring what your shoppers are actually doing in store.

1. Regionality Matters!

Soft drinks see very different growth in different regions. In 2018, for example, soft drinks sales grew at 9%1 in England and Wales, while in Scotland sales grew at 13%2. Have you tailored your range to suit your region?

2. Incrementality is Key

A strong core range is crucial to maintaining soft drink sales, with the best sellers displayed in the key areas so shoppers can easily find them. However, new product development contributed to 35%3 of soft drink sales in 2018. You need to be on top of the latest new launches and brand extensions to stock alongside your core range to keep driving excitement to the category.

3. Flavour Saviours

35% of new buyers to the soft drink category buy a flavoured drink. Flavour is the number one driver of repeat purchase4 – 16.3% of Energy shoppers have bought 3 or more flavours of the brand in the last year, up from 13.8% in the previous 52 weeks . Make sure that you’re helping customers buying into the category for the first time by offering a full range of flavours.

4. The New Generation

27%6 of shoppers aged between 16-24 say they always buy a soft drink when in store7. It is essential you keep this younger generation excited by stocking new flavours and new product launches.

5. Health is Important

For the first time ever, a higher volume of low- and no-sugar drinks are being bought than regular soft drinks8. Low-sugar soft drinks have contributed £165M9 thus far in 2019, 10% more than in the same time period in 2018. Sales are growing ahead of full sugar variants (10% growth, v.7% growth for full sugar variants10).

6. Crossing the Aisle

Cross-category merchandising can increase basket spend. 22%11 of soft drink shoppers also purchase crisps and snacks, while 18%12 also purchase confectionery. You can grow shopper spend in your store by locating these products next to each other.

7. Back to the Future

‘Drink later’ large serve drinks including multipacks are growing by 14%13 ahead of ‘drink now’ single-serve drinks (growing at 11%). Focus on the back of your store as well as your chiller to drive soft drink success!

8. The Big Segments

The five must-stock highest-value segments – Carbonates, Energy, Water, Juice and Sport – contribute to more than 85%14 of soft drink sales. Lucozade Energy, for instance, sells 10 bottles per second . Make sure your range reflects this!

1 EXT IRI Symbols & Indies, latest 52 wks to 26.06.19
2 EXT IRI Symbols & Indies, latest 52 wks to 26.06.19
3 EXT IRI Symbols & Indies, latest 52 wks to 28.10.18
4 Kantar Worldpanel 52 w/e 19.05.19 – TH Panel
5 Kantar Worldpanel 52 w/e 19.05.19 – TH Panel
6 HIM 2018
7 HIM 2018
8 Kantar Worldpanel 52 w/e 19.05.19 – TH Panel
9 EXT IRI Symbols & Indies, latest 52 wks to 26.06.19
10 EXT IRI Symbols & Indies, latest 52 wks to 26.06.19
11 EXT IRI Symbols & Indies, latest 52 wks to 26.06.19
12 EXT IRI Symbols & Indies, latest 52 wks to 26.06.19
13 EXT IRI Symbols & Indies, latest 52 wks to 26.06.19
14 EXT IRI Symbols & Indies, latest 52 wks to 26.06.19
15 IRI – Total Market – Units Sold – Lucozade Energy PET Bottles – L52wks to 26.05.19
Where relevant, data will be updated quarterly