Manila, Philippines — Filipinos allocated an average of P800 for beverages and hygiene products, with alcohol and tobacco taking the bulk of the money spent per month on sari-sari stores in 2022.
Data analytics startup Packworks said this was the result of its study on the spending habits of Filipinos, covering nearly 200,000 sari-sari stores nationwide.
Packworks’ business intelligence tool Sari IQ also found that cigarettes, alcohol, hygiene products, soda drinks and powdered drinks were the top five essential goods that make up the monthly budget of a regular Filipino household.
“It’s a war amongst cigarettes and liquor, beverages, and hygiene products. While Filipino households continue to prioritize essential goods, it’s apparent that many consumers have formed habits or indulgences that significantly influence their spending decisions,” Packworks Data Product Manager Samantha de Guzman said.
However, the analysis from Sari IQ also revealed disparities when it comes to brand preferences. While the categories of goods purchased were largely uniform, the specific brands that consumers gravitated towards showed significant regional variance.
NCR led the country in consumer spending with an average weekly basket size of P452.32 or P1,809.28 per month. Residents in this region showed a clear preference for brands such as Marlboro and Fortune for cigarettes, Cream Silk for hair care, Emperador Light for alcoholic beverages, and Surf with Fabcon for detergent. Taguig City, a fully urbanized area as per the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), emerged as a key player, contributing 23% to the total Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV).
Even with a smaller weekly spend of P107.20 or P428.80 per month, Sari IQ data showed residents of SOCCSKSARGEN consistently allocated a significant portion of their budget to Tanduay, a popular brand of rum. Brands such as Bear Brand and Nescafé 3-in-1 emerged as popular choices for powdered drinks in the region. This trend is evident in General Santos City, which contributes 32% to the region’s GMV.
At large, the study revealed 13 out of the 17 regions in the Philippines spent the most on cigarettes, while three others splurged on alcoholic drinks. Meanwhile, consumers in Zamboanga Peninsula preferred to spend on powdered coffee.
“At the core, Filipino households across the country have the same basic needs. But when you zoom in, you notice the diversity in local tastes, the loyalty they hold for certain brands, and how regional marketing campaigns even play a major role in determining which specific products make it into their shopping baskets,” de Guzman added.
“The consistent demand for these products highlights their importance in the retail mix, but the variance in brand preference provides an opportunity for strategic product placement and targeted marketing campaigns,” she said.
Packworks is a startup company that provides a business-to-business (B2B) platform that is easy to use, has low bandwidth, and light footprint that will allow sari-sari store owners to become more efficient in managing their business. Founded in 2018 and started as a solution for multinational companies in the Philippines to connect with neighborhood stores, the platform has now transformed into a way out of poverty for the millions of sari-sari store owners across the Philippines. Packworks empowers the sari-sari stores through scalable and accessible technology, with its team composed of dedicated developers, programmers, and technicians that work to put the power back into the hands of the people at the heart of Filipino communities by providing them digital opportunities previously only available to big companies. By bringing technology-based solutions to one million Filipino sari-sari stores, Packworks is driving toward a more progressive, connected, and inclusive Philippines.
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