Skip navigation

Consumers Mistake PL for National Brands

BOULDER, Colo. — National brand or private label? Consumers have trouble telling the difference according to research by Market Force Information.

The study, conducted in March with 6,100 participants, uncovered that some shoppers may not even know they’re buying private label.

More than 29% of participants said they never purchase private-label cereal. But when asked if their store sells private-label cereal, only 6% said they knew for sure it did. Respondents were able to name just three private-label brands that didn’t contain the store’s name.

More than one-third said they never buy private-label cleaning products, primarily because they do not trust a new brand or because the quality is inferior. However, 40% admitted not knowing if their store offers private-label cleaning supplies. Those surveyed could only name 10 specific private-label cleaning brands, and many offered generic answers such as “Kroger” or “Target” or “HEB.”

“We discovered that the distinction between private label and named brands is fading for consumers and they may not even know that certain brands are private label,” said Janet Eden-Harris, chief marketing officer for Market Force, in a prepared statement. “This situation could pose some real challenges for the national brands who must maintain a distinct identity.”