November 20, 2023
Kasi Insight's Cost of Living Tracker thoroughly analyses consumer behaviour in the context of rising inflation. It closely examines their primary concerns within the nation, identifies the sectors experiencing the most significant price increases, explores their strategies for managing inflationary pressures, and tracks the evolving trends in their spending habits. This tracker is conducted on a quarterly basis across 20 different African markets.
In Egypt, during the years 2022 and 2023, the survey uncovered fluctuations in the cost of living. Over this two-year period, both Gen Z and Millennials exhibited concerns about the escalating prices, with 2023 showing even higher levels of concern compared to 2022. In 2022, 61% of Gen Z and 86% of Millennials expressed their worries, but by 2023, these figures had risen to 89% and 90%, respectively.
Conversely, the percentage of individuals who were not concerned decreased from 2022 to 2023. In 2022, 39% of Gen Z and 14% of Millennials reported no concern, whereas in 2023, these numbers decreased to 11% and 10%, respectively. These findings signify a notable shift in consumer sentiment, with more people transitioning from indifference to a heightened awareness of the economic challenges posed by rising prices.
Amid these economic challenges, both Gen Z and Millennials adopted various strategies to cope with the increased prices in 2023. Notably, both generations embraced the idea of consuming more affordable food brands (61% each), demonstrating a shared effort to economize without compromising their dietary choices. They also similarly opted for less expensive meal alternatives at a rate of 33% each, such as replacing traditional breakfast items with more cost-effective options like porridge.
It's worth noting that Gen Zers were more inclined to skip meals (42%) compared to Millennials (31%). Additionally, Millennials showed a stronger tendency to consume smaller food portions (50%) compared to Gen Zers (46%). A significant proportion of both age groups expressed their willingness to shift towards consuming lower-quality or cheaper foods (Gen Z: 61%, Millennials: 53%). Furthermore, nearly half (48%) indicated they were opting for less expensive types of meat, while 41% reported eating meat less frequently or in smaller quantities. In terms of dairy, 26% of respondents reported using less milk than they did a year ago, and 49% were consuming milk less frequently or in smaller quantities.
Understanding the shifts in consumer behaviour is paramount for brands operating in the food and beverage sector, especially as we approach the year-end sales and holiday shopping season. Retailers should be proactive in adapting their strategies to respond to these changes. This adaptation involves a comprehensive re-evaluation of pricing strategies to address the concerns arising from rising prices while ensuring that product quality remains uncompromised. Additionally, offering a diverse range of products that caters to different consumer needs, spanning from cost-effective alternatives to premium options, will prove to be an effective approach to meet the evolving demands of the market.
Moreover, introducing innovative promotions and product bundling that align with these changing preferences and economic constraints is a vital strategy. By acknowledging these trends and adjusting their strategies accordingly, retailers in the food and beverage sector can not only navigate economic challenges but also create a more inclusive and resilient market that caters to the diverse needs of their consumers, securing their position in a rapidly changing economic landscape. This flexibility and consumer-centric approach will be instrumental in staying competitive and thriving in the evolving marketplace.
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