Tide vs. Generic Detergent
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Laundry detergent is a very necessary item and can be found in many varieties at local grocery stores. However, some brands tend to overpower others. During our team marketplace assignment we compared two different detergents at two different locations. We compared Tide and the generic brand detergent at both Harris Teeter and Food Lion. We compared the differences and similarities of each brand. We also observed the positioning, prices, promotions, and distribution of both brands. These are all factors that determine how favorable and profitable each brand is. In both stores we observed Tide first. This product was located at the front of the aisle in both stores, taking up a large amount of shelf space. Tide’s bright orange and blue packaging made the brand more visible than both store brands. Tide’s yellow and orange target-like symbol also makes the brand very noticeable. The Tide brand includes a variety of detergent including liquid, powder, and pods. Each of these forms of detergent comes in different sizes, which allows the consumer to pick the size that best fits his or her needs. Tide’s depth of product line includes ten special detergents to choose from. Whether the consumer is looking for the original, or the NFL Sports Edition, Tide has it all. Tide also offers detergent for high efficiency machines, which is becoming more popular in today’s market. Tide’s investment in producing high efficiency machines detergent is smart on their part due to the fact that this detergent profitability will continue to rise as the popularity of these machines increase.
We also analyzed the store brand of detergents, Harris Teeters “your home” and Food lion’s “home 360.” We noticed Harris Teeter had a very small selection of its product on the shelves, having only 4 face-fronts on just two of five shelves. The packaging looked very generic with a white bottle, which blended in with the “all” detergent, also in a white bottle, that was placed right next to it. However the advertising stickers on the bottles were significantly different so you could tell the two apart. The product lacked depth providing only 2 different sizes and scents, which could be the reason for its low pricing. You can get the Harris Teeter brand for two dollars cheaper than you can get the tide at only $5.99 for the 50 ounce instead of $7.99. You’ll find yourself saving a whopping 6 dollars on the 150 ounce bottle paying only $16.99 versus the tide brand at $22.99. When looking at the Food Lion brand “Home 360” we found there product a little bit more marketable than the “your home” brand. “Home 360” was displayed on all 5 shelves with 10 front facings. Just as the “your home” brand the “home 360” was packaged in white bottles, however the difference was the different colors of caps the bottles had for the different kinds of detergent they offered.
With that being said, the brand did have more depth in its product offering 2 sizes with 2 different scents, and a third “oxi” stain fighting detergent. With such a generic packaging the color caps really help the product to stand out with the other competing brands. Just like with the “your home” brand the price of the “home 360” was significantly lower than the competing brands. When comparing it to Tide, we found the 50-ounce bottle of “home 360” to be roughly four dollars cheaper at $3.99 and the 100-ounce to be roughly eight dollars at $8.99. The food lion brand marketing mix clearly beats the Harris teeter brand having more depth and cheaper prices. It was obvious to us that food lion wanted to market its products to sale and made sure its product was displayed accordingly on the shelves compared to the Harris Teeter brand, whose product seemed hidden and lack-luster. The distribution of these detergents does not vary much between a higher end Harris Teeter and a low priced Food Lion. Both grocery stores hold a large variety of Tide detergent as well as offering their own generic brand.
Even though the generic brand does not take up anywhere near the amount of space as Tide, Food Lion does offer a couple more scent choices for the generic brand than Harris Teeter. This may be because the target market of Food Lion is a low-price shopper; therefore they may be less concerned with the detergent brand. In both stores the detergents are located in the same area, to the left of the cash registers, taking up the front half of the aisle. At Harris Teeter, the popular Tide had a total of 59 facings, while the generic store brand had simply 2 facings. At this store, Tide took up six rows from top to bottom, while the generic brand took up a row at the very top and a row at the very bottom. Due to the white bottle color of “Harris Teeter, Your Home” it blended in with other products making it much less visible, especially since it was not at eye level. At Food Lion, Tide took over 73 facings in a matter of 5 shelves while Food Lion’s “Home360” also occupied 5 shelves with 10 facings. At both grocery stores no promotions were offered for “Harris Teeter Your Home” or “Home360” however, Tide supplied many promotions for consumers.
At Harris Teeter, shoppers with VIC cards could save $3.00 or purchase Tide with attached sample pods. At Food Lion, MVP shoppers are able to save $0.50-$1.60 on certain bottles such as Tide plus downy, NFL Sports Tide, Vivid Bleach Tide, and the original. Consumers are also able to purchase Tide with attached sample pods at Food Lion. Also at Food Lion, there was a bigger selection of Tide powder detergent, which included the NFL Sports Tide with “$5.00 worth of coupons inside.” When shopping for detergent, these bottles may be more appealing due to the free samples and sales. At both Harris Teeter and Food Lion, they offered 50, 100, and 150-ounce liquid Tide detergent. However, Food Lion offered two more sizes of powder detergent than Harris Teeter. Harris Teeter offers a 56-ounce cardboard box of powder detergent for $11.29. Meanwhile, Food Lion a 42-ounce powder detergent for $6.99, a 95-ounce for $13.99, and a 143-ounce for $19.99.
With all of these product sizes from Tide, the generic “Harris Teeter Your Home” is only offered in a 50-ounce bottle for $5.99, and a 150-ounce bottle for $16.99. The Food Lion generic detergent “Home360” is offered in three scents: Free & Clear, Spring Fresh, and OxiBoost in a 50-ounce or 100-ounce capped container. While observing the two different products in each store, we noticed that in Harris Teeter Tide was missing a few facings that were in need of restocking. This may note to the consumer the popularity of the Tide brand, however since these facings were missing the consumer may be looking for that specific version of Tide and will be unable to meet their needs. We felt like both Harris Teeter and Food Lion are successful with Tide and generic brand sales. However, after observing the laundry detergents at both locations, we noted that Food Lion had the best selection of Tide and generic brand as well as great promotions and prices. Both stores carry a wide variety of detergent, but Food Lion does a better job catering to the consumers needs.