Hispanic Americans Choose Wal-Mart as Favorite Store According to GfK NOP Study

New York, March 28, 2005 — GfK NOP today announced results from its Hispanic Omnitel® Retail Study revealing where Hispanic Americans are shopping and why. Asked to name their favorite store, Wal-Mart was far and away the top selection at 36% with JCPenney, Sears and Target tying for second place at 4%. While no one specific Hispanic store was selected by a significant percent of consumers, 5% of respondents named as their favorite a local store that caters to Hispanic Americans.

The new study was conducted in February 2005 among 500 Hispanic Americans aged 18 and older nationwide via telephone. Respondents were given the choice of completing the survey in English or Spanish.

Asked which factors are most important when deciding where to shop, Hispanic Americans cited the same priorities that other Americans have when choosing retailers—convenience, low prices, and a wide range of merchandise. However, a critical second-tier of priorities that is unique to the Hispanic market is cited by about half of Hispanics as being "very important," including store employees speaking Spanish, products relevant to Hispanic consumers and Spanish language signage. Following is a breakdown of factors considered very important in choosing a shopping destination:

Low prices 77%
Convenient location 72%
Wide range of merchandise 71%
Employees who speak Spanish 54%
Products relevant to Hispanic consumers 52%
Wide range of payment options 47%
Spanish signage 47%
Product packaging and labels in Spanish 43%
Owner is a member of the local community 34%

Based on priorities of Hispanic shoppers it is no surprise that national discount chains such as Wal-Mart and Target are frequented even more often than local stores that specialize in serving Latino and Hispanic customers. Asked about their retail shopping habits, following is a breakdown of the types of stores respondents say they shop in often:

National discount chain stores such as Wal-Mart or Target 61%
Local stores that specialize in serving Hispanic and Latino customers 37%
National home improvement stores such as Lowe's or Home Depot 37%
National mid-priced department stores such as Kohl's, Sears or JCPenney 31%
Specialty clothing stores such as the Gap or Old Navy 19%
Electronics, entertainment or appliance stores such as Circuit City or Best Buy 17%
National upscale department stores such as Macy's, Nordstrom or Lord & Taylor 10%
Sporting good stores such as the Sports Authority 8%

Birthplace Impacts Shopping Priorities

Digging deeper into the Hispanic market, the study uncovers significant differences between U.S.-born and foreign-born Hispanic consumers. Foreign-born respondents were significantly more attracted to the tailored offerings of local stores specializing in serving Hispanic customers with 42% saying they often shop in these stores vs. 26% of U.S.-born Hispanics.

While both groups select Wal-Mart as their favorite store, following is a breakdown of how their shopping priorities differ based on the factors they select as very important in deciding where to shop:

U.S.-born Foreign-born
Low prices 70% 83%
Convenient location 67% 75%
Wide range of merchandise 68% 73%
Employees who speak Spanish 33% 69%
Products relevant to Hispanic consumers 35% 64%
Wide range of payment options 35% 55%
Spanish signage 22% 65%
Product packaging and labels in Spanish 20% 58%
Owner is a member of the local community 28% 40%

About Hispanic OmniTel

GfK NOP's Hispanic OmniTel is a quarterly survey of the Hispanic American market that represents all Hispanic American adults nationwide. The survey offers an efficient way to understand trends and issues relating to this rapidly growing market.

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