Value, quality, risk, price, private label, breakfast cereal, South Africa


Private label brands, consisting of merchandise sold exclusively through a particular retail chain, are growing in prominence throughout the world. Although highly advantageous to retailers, these brands exhibit pitifully low penetration rates in South Africa and are typically seen as being inferior to national/manufacturer brands. This study considers three key demographic variables and the impact of these on consumer responses pertaining to the perceptions of a private label brand. In this respect, a range of responses to PLB characteristics are assessed, focusing on perceived quality, risk, relative price and value. Furthermore, antecedents affecting perceived quality, and a moderator variable assessing the impact of entrenched loyalty to national brands, are included in the mix. Lastly, willingness to buy is also probed. The findings reveal that high income households shun PLBs, as do younger adults of 21 to 40 years of age. In contrast, consumers aged 60 and above appear to embrace these brands. There was a negligible difference recorded by the gender divide, although females appeared more inclined to favour private label merchandise. These results may assist retailers in better targeting predisposed consumers, particularly through customisable channels such as Facebook and Google Mail advertisements.

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