Private-label goods are products sold under a retailer’s own brand. They are available for many categories of packaged consumer goods and sold through several retail channels, though most commonly in supermarkets. Globally, the private label segment has the highest market penetration in Europe, followed by North America, and Latin America. Depending on the country, the private label segment makes up between 20 and 50 percent of supermarket unit sales in Europe.
Considering sales growth rates, private-label consumer goods are performing better than branded products. The reasons for this are manifold. Unlike national brands, retailers can set their own pricing strategies and differentiate the products’ offerings. Moreover, consumers also believe store brand products to be of better quality and more sustainable than they did in the past.
Leading region by retail market share of private label worldwide
Top EU country by supermarket unit sales of private-label products
In the United States, private label accounts for 19.5 percent of the whole retail market and has a value of roughly 160 billion U.S. dollars. Supermarkets account for over 73 billion dollars of this market.
In the EU, the size of the store brand market varies significantly between countries. The share of consumer goods sales held by private label brands was highest in the UK and the Netherlands.
Private label goods have made major headway in retail and can be found in a wide variety of categories. In the consumer packaged goods market in the U.S., private label accounts for 16 percent of all sales. In supermarkets, household paper and plastic goods were the best selling store brands goods, accounting for nearly 11 billion U.S. dollars in sales. In Germany, private label brands held a majority share of the paper products and canned food segments.
Although traditionally found in physical stores, private label brands are popular among online consumers as well. On the one hand, store brands are part of the general growth of the e-grocery segment, also due to changing shopping habits during the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. On the other hand, online marketplaces and pure e-commerce players introduced their own brands, in some cases even providing several product lines.
North American has a notably low share of private label sales in its retail market. Only 18 percent of sales in the region came from store brands compared to over 30 percent in Latin America, Europe, and Asia. One possible explanation for this is the fact that most U.S. grocery chains are regional and don't command the brand presence of national chains in markets elsewhere in the world.
This category covers the market of consumer goods sold under the own brands of retailers. The products are usually supplied by third-party manufacturers, which have a portfolio of different customers: national brands, retailers, or even service providers.
Statistical information about the private label market is most often provided in relation to the whole in-store retail market. Similarly, spending intentions reported by consumers are usually described as a choice of private label brands over all other brands available in the market. Dollar and unit sales of specific categories of products provide further insights, especially in the grocery sector.