The increase in overseas-born Australians is predicted to continue with the biggest growth coming from Asia (overtaking Europe in terms of population share as of 2015). NSW alone is home to about half of all of Australia’s 500,000 Chinese-born residents.
According to Nielsen:
The changing retail landscape.
European preferences are generally catered to more so than Asian foods in major supermarkets.
This is partly because many SKUs are driven by Australian demand, such as consumers looking for unprocessed foods, with healthier alternatives such as wholegrain foods.
However, there are more similarities than we think. Both European and Asian-born consumers are looking for healthy ingredients, although perhaps just slightly different types.
Changes have been made in an effort to better connect with international consumers, with sections of supermarket aisles now dedicated to food from various cultures such as the introduction of fresh sushi counters. But more could be done.
Food trends are moving towards fresh Asian ingredients, vegetables and treats, such as dumplings and dim sum. Asian-fusion restaurant cuisine is also becoming increasingly popular in Australia, suggesting that Australian and European-born consumers would respond well to an increased Asian food selection in supermarkets.
Culture has a big impact on attitudes towards alcohol. There are obvious and clear differences between Australian cultural attitudes and Asian cultural attitudes and tastes.
3. Luxury retail.
In the Australian market, Chinese shoppers are estimated to be responsible for at least two-thirds of sales.
According to Jennifer Spark from Ready Set Go China, a Sydney based digital marketing agency, luxury brands in Australia are now maximising this opportunity by working with wealthy Chinese micro-influencers who can influence shopping behaviours.
Concierge and customer service staff at bigger city stores in Australia are often Mandarin speakers in order to better connect with this group of consumers.
Dior stores in Melbourne have also introduced a rate card which compares the prices of their popular products in Australia with China, to show the savings.
Opportunities to connect.
First, show commitment.
Be authentic in your commitment to Asian and international shoppers. Think longer term than just cultural holidays such as Chinese New Year. These sporadic promotions aren't enough to change behaviour and store preference.
Work with trusted influencers.
Tap into daigou shoppers.
The bottom line.
The traditions, behaviours, beliefs, wants and needs of an increasingly multicultural Australia provide an opportunity to explore new flavours, ingredients and products.
Tap into this market today.
PLAY specialises in consumer research for FMCG, retail and lifestyle brands, so if you're looking to get a better understanding of the changing Australian population and market, we're here to help.
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