IGD warns retailers of supermarket ‘top-up’ tactics

The IGD has said supermarkets are increasingly capitalising on ‘top-up’ shoppers, an area independent retailers have traditionally laid claim to.

Three key areas that shoppers tell IGD they would like to see convenience retailers develop:

  • Gain a clearer understanding of how top-up shops are conducted to help shoppers save time
  • Give customers value for money as well as deliver the needs of the community
  • Make the most of merchandising tactics such as gondola ends, dual siting and in-store events

The warning came as it announced food and grocery will be worth more than £200bn by 2020 with convenience, discounters and online sales driving growth.

The convenience research firm said discount sales will increase by more than 80% and online sales will double in value in the next five years.


Convenience stores will remain the third fastest growing grocery sector, but says the growth across all three areas is set to slow down compared to the previous five years.

Joanne Denney-Finch, IGD chief executive, said the definition of top-up shopping is changing as customers say it is now less about distress shopping and more about having more items in the basket.

“Supermarkets are rearranging their layouts to deliver a convenience-style shop for people who just want to pop in for a few items. Meanwhile, food discounters have been opening in high street locations, side by side with convenience operators,” she added.



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