CHICAGO — Nielsen on Tuesday released its sixth report on Hispanic consumers as part of its Diverse Intelligence Series. Its focus is on the female head of household, who makes the lion’s share of purchasing decisions for her family.
The population of Latinx women in the United States grew 37% between 2005 and 2015, according to Nielsen, compared with 2% in the same time period for non-Hispanic Whites and 11% for total women in the country. There are now 28 million Hispanic women living in the United States, representing 17% of the total U.S. female population and 9% of the total U.S. population, and 77% of their growth in that 10-year span came not from immigration, but from Hispanic girls born in the country.
“Ties to culture and language remain paramount to Latinas in the United States,” noted Stacie de Armas, VP, strategic initiatives and consumer engagement, Nielsen, and one of the authors of the report. “Although 34% are foreign-born, 74% of Latinas over the age of five speak a language other than English at home, with 26% speaking solely English at home.”
Retailers who want to appeal to Latinx women with their own brand assortments should focus on beauty and wellness. "Total Hispanics and all Latina age groups over-index on the purchases of health and beauty products, including cosmetics, deodorant, women's fragrances, hair care, men's toiletries and ethnic health and beauty," De Armas wrote.
Meal prep is another key category among Latinx women. According to Nielsen's research, 77% of Hispanic women agree they enjoy being creative in the kitchen and 79% agree they cook meals frequently. “However, as more Latinas focus on advancing their education and enhancing their careers, they are looking for time-saving meal options, without completely moving away from the idea of home-cooked meals,” de Armas added. “That's why Hispanics over-index against non-Hispanic Whites in dollars per buyer spent on frozen, shelf-stable and refrigerated meal starters, as well as in buying households for refrigerated meal starters.”
And taking an own brand approach to private label product development, as opposed to a national brand equivalent strategy, may be key in capturing the spend of this key consumer demographic. Nielsen has noted in the past how extremely brand loyal Hispanics are overall. According to a white paper Nielsen released with Univision in the fall of last year, 47% of Hispanic consumers will only buy "brand name" products, as compared with 31% of the general population who feel that way.
Regardless of how Hispanic women differentiate between national brands and store brands, perceived value is a key factor in their purchase decisions. According to Nielsen's latest survey, 68% of Latinx women agree that they buy based on quality not price. All told, 77% of Hispanic women agree they know the prices for most of the foods and packaged foods they buy, 72% agree price is more important than brand names and 68% agree that if a product is made by a retailer they trust, they will buy it, even if it is slightly more expensive.