Case Studies: Best-in-Class Confectionery Retail Brands

Hershey and Kopenhagen are two of the most renowned confectionery brands in the world because of their in-store customer service efforts. Each of these brands were chosen as “best-in-class” due to their rankings in customer satisfaction reports. While Hershey is known for making their products attractive to the eye and easy to find, Kopenhagen brings in customers by selling them on happiness and luxury. For each of these brands, a breakdown of what they are doing in-store to be top-ranked brands in terms of customer experience are detailed below, as well as images to depict how they are doing this. Furthermore, insights related to what consumers are interested in and how they are shopping for confectionery items have been detailed below. This data was pulled from the 2019 State of the Industry Report for the global candy and confectionery market.

1. Hershey

  • In both 2018 and 2019, Hershey was ranked by American consumers as the number one brand in terms of customer satisfaction by the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). The received a ranking of 86/100 in 2018 and 84/100 in 2019 for their constant delivery of quality goods and overall satisfaction.
  • According to Hershey’s “Creating Value in a Shopper’s World” report that was published in 2019, the brand works to capture consumers’ by making their products easy to find, engaging, and personal.
  • The company implemented a “Hershey’s Retail Snacking Experience Team (ReSET) to help implement these methodologies into their customer experience strategies.
    • In terms of “findability,” Hershey’s makes sure that their in-store and online experiences are cohesive for consumers. This includes making sure their websites are easy to navigate in the same way that products are found on shelves, and products are organized in stores that make it easier to narrow their selections.
    • In terms of “engagement” and “personalization,” Hershey’s is regularly collecting data from their consumers regarding their ages, demographics, purchases, needs, and more. This information is then used by the brand to increase conversations about products and offer specials to consumers based on what they are interested in.
  • One of the interesting things that Hershey does is offer “multi-dimensional products” that help reach people at different points along their time with one of the company’s brand. As an example, this is how the brand sells their Oreo product: Omni Category Management Framework: Cookies at Walmart (ILLUSTRATIVE EXAMPLE)
  • By offering the same product in multiple sizes at different spots and for different purposes within the same store, Hershey is working to lock in customers for the long run.
  • The Hershey company tests their reinvention concepts at approximately 20 stores in three national retailers throughout the U.S. These concepts include but are not limited to package redesign, digital components to in-store shopping, and more.
    • The brand has seen an increase of 4 points in their conversion from aisle traffic to purchase as a result of their new packaged designs.
    • Hershey has also managed to decrease their product search time in aisle by 50% by mandating specific organization/stocking methods for their products.
  • Hershey created a “Snack Zone” that sits in-stores based on the fact that 91% of U.S. shoppers reported that they would see value in having a single-serve snacking section in stores. These stations are easily accessible and “frustration-free” for consumers. Since implementing this in stores, 81% reported it creating a positive impression of the retailer they saw it in, and the zone itself increased sales by 20%.

2. Kopenhagen

  • In KPMGs Global Customer Experience Excellence Report of 2019, the coffee and chocolate brand Kopenhagen that is based out of Brazil was ranked as the 3rd leading customer service brand in the country across every industry.
  • KPMG noted in their report that Kopenhagen performed best in their personalization category as a result of marketing their stores as “experience destinations” as opposed to just chocolate or coffee shops.
  • Kopenhagen’s mission statement reads as follows: “to manufacture products of the highest quality, preserving its flavor with sophistication and originality.” The brand as a whole promotes “providing happiness” to consumers via chocolate and offering customers the best variety and customer service throughout their stores at all times.
  • Inside Kopenhagen stores, the brand is known for great attention to detail in terms of their decor and ambiance. The stores are said to be intimate and cozy, relevant to the quality of chocolate that they are making and selling.
  • Arguably the largest selling points of the brand’s customer service efforts are the fact that they are maintaining the historic taste of the product that they are producing while making it their goal to serve customers and please them.
  • Customers that shop at Kopenhagen stores are encouraged to relax and take their time in the shops, enjoy a cup of coffee and taste the chocolates. They are selling consumers on relaxation and luxury, not just chocolate.
Case Studies: Best-in-Class Confectionery Retail Brands

Consumer Shopping Habits for Confectionery Products

  • According to the 2019 State of the Global Candy and Confectionery Industry report, approximately 70% of consumers globally prefer to enjoy premium chocolates, while 27% like fine (gourmet) chocolates.
    • Consumers that report preferring fine chocolates say that they are more interested in value from the behavior and certifications of the brand they are consuming, and thus are willing to pay more for it.
    • Goodnow Farms Chocolate won six sofi awards in 2019 for their candy, which is the first time in 47 years a brand has one this many awards within a single year.
  • As per the National Committee on Accreditation’s (NCA) Getting to Know Chocolate Consumers report, the favorite added flavor to chocolate by consumers is peanut/peanut butter. However, for those that prefer to indulge in fine chocolate, they prefer almonds.
    • Hershey’s created two versions of their famous “Reese’s Cup” product, one of which is the traditional all-chocolate shell, while the other is a half peanut butter, half chocolate outer shell. This was an effort on the company’s part to reach both sides of their consumer preferences within a single product.
  • In terms of confectionery sales, consumers are most interested in non-GMO Project verified items, organic confections, gluten free items, and fair trade items. Millennials and Gen Z consumers make up the largest segment interested in these variations, with 41% seeking brands that carry sustainable products.
  • Information collected by GlobalData shows that consumers are interested in brands that are unique, tasty, and healthy all at the same time. Millennials specifically are most willing to spend money on in-store experiences that are novel and indulging.
Glenn is the Lead Operations Research Analyst at The Digital Momentum with experience in research, statistical data analysis and interview techniques. A holder of degree in Economics. A true specialist in quantitative and qualitative research.

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