British consumers rate origin of products at same level as price, research from Nielsen says

Caitlin Morrison
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Cars are one of the main products where consumers would rather shell out for a global brand (Source: Getty)

​Six-in-ten British consumers cited a brand’s country of origin as one of the most important factors in making a purchase choice.

Where a product comes from is as important to consumers, on average, as factors such as its range, price, function and quality, according to Nielsen’s new Global Brand-Origin Survey.

The research looks into whether people prefer goods produced by global/multinational brands, which operate in many markets, or those only operating in the respondent’s home country.

The results show that 59 per cent of UK respondents said that where a brand is from is at least as important as the product’s benefits, while 58 per cent said origin is at least as important as price and 53 per cent said it was at least as important as quality.

However, cars, camera/video equipment and computers/laptops are the categories where British consumers are most likely to prefer global brands over local ones.

Meanwhile food and drink categories dominate consumers’ preferences for local brands; 59 per cent of people who buy milk prefer local over global, while local is also preferred among the majority of those buying meat (54 per cent) and vegetables (51 per cent).

Over half (55 per cent) of UK respondents prefer buying local brands “because they support local businesses”, according to the research, while 41 per cent say local brands are usually more trustworthy and 36 per cent say “local brands are more attuned to their personal needs/tastes”.

“In an increasingly borderless world, the ‘made in…’ moniker still matters,” said Nielsen UK’s Ben Schubert. “One of the more surprising findings is that a brand’s country of origin is at least as important as other purchasing criteria, such as price and quality.”

He added: “Factors such as price, deals, familiarity and variety are more important to consumers when choosing global brands, whereas product benefits, environmentally-friendly considerations and, of course, national pride are bigger factors for them when deciding to buy local brands.”

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