Understanding the behavior of Retailers & Consumers in Saudi Arabia during Pre-Ramadan – 2019


With the Ramadan period, traditionally being the retailing highlight of the year in Saudi Arabia, we conducted high level review on retailer activity running up to Ramadan over time. In 2019, Ramadan started on 6th May. The ‘Pre-Ramadan’ weeks show a marked increase in the number of active flyers in the market.

Change in Retailers’ Flyer Activity during Pre-Ramadan

  • It is observed that during the
    Pre-Ramadan weeks the retailers start releasing more flyers in the market.
  • The active flyers increased by
    14% in the pre-Ramadan period compared to the regular weeks in 2019.
  • Close to 40% of Retailers
    started promoting Ramadan-specific offers 5 weeks before Ramadan to increase
    sales and footfall.
  • 75% of retailers started
    promoting 4 weeks before Ramadan in 2019 which is 23% more than the year-2017.
  • To attract consumers and respond
    to competitor offers, it is observed that 3 out of 4 retailers were promoting
    flyers with short validity (1-2 days) along with the weekly flyers during
    pre-Ramadan period in 2019.

Rise in the popularity of ‘Cooking Meals’ categories

There are
categories which are highly popular among the consumers during regular
weeks.  The shift in the popularity of
some categories during pre-Ramadan weeks was observed.

Top Categories with higher popularity during regular weeks

  1. Frozen
    Ready To Eat
  2. Chocolates
    & Candies
  3. Cheese
    & Cream
  4. Sauces
    & Spreads
  5. Canned
    & Packaged Foods

Top Categories with higher popularity during Pre-Ramadan weeks

  1. Frozen Ready-To-Eat
  2. Canned & Packaged Foods
  3. Cheese & Cream
  4. Kitchen Appliances
  5. Sauces & Spreads

Top Categories with increased popularity during pre-Ramadan compared to
regular weeks

  1. Baking
  2. Powdered
    Drinks & Syrups
  3. Puddings & Desserts
  4. Salt, Spices & Paste
  5. Pasta
    & Noodles
  • There is an exceptional growth
    in the popularity of some categories during pre-Ramadan weeks.

Understanding the dynamics of offer and promotion mechanism during the Pre-Ramadan Period

  • It is observed that there is an increase in 9.33% in the offers during Pre-Ramadan weeks as compared to the regular weeks.
  • There is an increase in the
    offers from different categories in the market. Retailers promote most of the
    offers for groceries. 19% of the total offers are only from the groceries.
  • Maximum offers are promoted
    from the Frozen Ready-to-Eat sub-category, which is followed by canned and
    packeted foods, cheese and cream, sauces and spreads, oil and ghee, baking.
  • The promotion mechanism also
    changes during this period.
  • An increase of 29.32% is
    observed for the Multibuy scheme during Pre-Ramadan period.
  • The average discount offered by
    major supermarkets is increased by 2.38% during the Pre-Ramadan period

Change in ClicFlyer users’ app usage pattern

ClicFlyer users start planning their Ramadan shopping 5 weeks before Ramadan starts.

  • The sessions per user number
    starts increasing 5 weeks before Ramadan and reaches the peak in the last week
    (including Ramadan Night).
  • The sessions per users fall to
    regular week level as soon as Ramadan month starts.

Expectation from Ramadan 2021

We have
observed that The Pre-Ramadan
Flyer activity is increasing over the years. In 2019, the Ramadan Themed flyers
started 5 weeks before Ramadan started. Since 2020 was impacted by the
pandemic, it is expected that retailers will be more aggressive with Flyers
& Promotions in 2021, and we can see the same trend this year in Saudi
Arabia with popular supermarkets starting Ramadan themed Flyers 6 weeks before
Ramadan starts!

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