Spanish Massive Consumers changes of habits

The Spanish consumer has changed remarkably their shopping habits since the beginning of the COVID pandemia. The journal 20MINUTOS published the research conducted by Patricia Daimiel, Retail Intelligence Leader from Nielsen Consulting Spain, that shows the main changes and trends of the Massive Market Consumers.

Do it yourself

People have gone back to basics, we all learned how to bake our bread at home, prepare new meals for the family, cut our hair, and so on. These changes have reflected on the consumer shopping basket, the routines, and the needs of all the Spanish citizens. Such products as Disinfectants and Bleach (+22% in 2020), Household Cleaners (+20%), and Hydroalcoholic gels (+2670%) have flourished on the consumer shopping basket strongly because of a change in routines, said Daimiel.

Also, there is an increase, because of the confinement and restrictions in consumers that adopt a Do It Yourself mind.

The fall in travel, leisure, clothes, and restaurants in behalf of staying at home, makes that high consume goods acquire a new significance and be a way of filling the gap of this savings.

Health and Hygiene

Health Care has been in the last years the motor of massive market consumption. Health is now our major concern. Consumers now make more conscious and frequently cleanings at home thanks to Bleachers and Disinfectants (+22 in 2020) or Cleaning Products (+20%) and that people is trying to protect themselves by using disposable gloves (+176%), disinfectant alcohol (+167%) and hand soap (+49%). Also, Hydroalcoholic Gel and masks have surfaced.

Leisure at Home

There is less public attending to bars, but spending on appetizers grows. 2020 showed an increase in consumption occasions at home due to confinement and the bars and restaurants closure. Because of it, Spanish consumers have bought more of those products to spend that time at home, taking the aperitifs with dry fruits (+11%), beer (+25%) or vermouth(+49%), having breakfast, or just midmorning coffee at home: Monodose coffee (+23%). Or simply launching ourselves as chefs with gross increment on refrigerated pizzas (+35%), grated cheeses (+26%), and normal tuna in oil (+20%).

On the other side of the road were left the beauty products and the shops of the traditional delicatessen sausages and meats.

Alcoholic beverages

The winners are Beer and Wine, and less high graduated beverages. The Spanish are expending more leisure time at home, a phenomenon called cocooning. Restrictions and confinement have speeded up these trends. Hostelry consumption was replaced by home consumption.

In 2020 consumption of beverages in hostelry has reduced more than 40%, and moved to home consumption. Beer (+23%), Cider (+19%), or Wine with Denomination of Origin (+15%) have been the best sellers categories consumed at home.


The world economic recession obliged consumers to rethink how, where and what to buy. Even people whose incomes have not been affected by the crisis declare that they feel limited on their expenses, specifically in Spain it was 7 out of 10 homes.

According to the Sentiment Tracker conducted by NielsenIQ from December 2020, 67% of Spanish people thought that there was more than a year left to the end of the pandemic, showing them more pessimistic than the rest of the Europeans.

Online Shopping

2020 has been the year of the boom of the online channel in Massive Consume. All the external factors have influenced the take-off of a channel that had been making considerable advances during the lasts years. Two months of home confinements, restrictions to get out most of the night, limited capacity at shops, and other measures, all had help that in 2020 this channel has duplicated its weight on the Massive Consume Channel, with 2,7% of them, states Damiel. These numbers will be increasing in 2021.

Patricia Damiel assured that there are going to be more changes in the ways of consumption. "Industry and distributors should be aware of all these changes on digitization, assortment, channels, promotions, prices that today are in motion but thanks to analytics tools market research enterprises can understand the changes of the consumers at the moment that they take place so to react on time".

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