Black Consumer Study Breaks Down Annual Shopping Habits Of African Americans
Compared to all consumers, African Americans spend 30 percent more of their total income — even though we make $20,000 less than the average household. A whopping 87 percent of annual retail spending consists of Black consumers! But where does our money go? Hudson Valley Press Online gives us the scoop via an article from Nielsen’s SVP of public affairs and government relations, Cheryl Pearson-McNeil.
When it comes to shopping at the mall, we make eight more annual trips than any other group pulling in an average of 154 visits. Blacks also patronize dollar stores the most; we make seven more trips than the average group making a total of 20 trips. Lastly, Black Americans made more visits to convenience/gas stores by a small margin: making a total of 15 annual visits.
However, African American trips to grocery stores and warehouse clubs (like Costco) are a bit more scarce. “Less time is spent at grocery stores, with three fewer trips. The exception to grocery store shopping, though, is with Blacks who earn upwards of $100K annually. We also make three fewer trips to warehouse stores and two fewer trips to mass merchandisers than the Total Market. However, more upper-income Blacks (73%) shop at warehouse clubs than non-Blacks annually,” Pearson-McNeil said.
It could be that the lack of grocery stores and other healthy establishments in Black neighborhoods that contribute to this trend. This is why it’s not at all surprising that African-Americans frequent McDonald’s and Burger King more than other U.S. household.
But when Black Americans do make the trip to their local grocers, here’s what their shopping cart looks like:
African-Americans […] purchase more unprepared meat and frozen seafood, dry vegetables and grains, refrigerated juices & drinks[…], feminine hygiene products, fresheners and deodorizers.
What you probably won’t see in our carts are diary products such as milk and yogurt. “[T]his could be because many of us are lactose-intolerant,” Pearson-McNeil adds.
But probably the largest retail disparity between African Americans and other groups rests in the hair and beauty industry. We spend about nine times more on hair care and beauty products in comparison to other demographics. “In fact, 46% of Black households shop at Beauty Supply Stores and have an average annual total spend of $94 on products at these stores,” Pearson-McNeil says.
All the aforementioned figures were pulled from Resilient, Receptive, and Relevant: The African-American Consumer 2013 Report. With African Americans approaching $1 trillion buying power, one must wonder why aren’t marketers paying more attention to Black consumer trends.
What do you think of these spending habits?