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BizReport : Ecommerce : September 14, 2012

Products "Made in America" becoming fashionable in USA

A "Made in the USA" label goes down well with American consumers, but new research from Perception Research Services International finds that the same label goes down just as well with consumers in that other manufacturing behemoth of a country, China.

by Helen Leggatt

In a July poll of 1,400 U.S. consumers, Perception Research Services (PRS) found that four out of five shoppers (76%) notice "Made in the USA" claims and labels and are more likely to purchase that product.

U.S. consumers are choosing to buy products made on home soil to "help the economy", found PRS, not necessarily because they were better value.

However, PRS suggests that it is consumer concerns surrounding the safety and quality of products made "overseas" that keeps them buying USA-made products, particularly when it comes to medicines, food and personal care items.

"Whether it is for quality assurance, to boost the economy, or out of patriotism, buying American-made products is becoming quite fashionable among U.S. shoppers," says Jonathan Asher, Executive Vice President of PRS.

"Particularly for products that are ingested such as food, beverages and medicines - if you make it here, make that clear - that is, include a "Made in the USA" mention on your package (and possibly other marketing communications) so that shoppers are aware of that fact."

So, how do Americans feel about items that are "Made in China"? For a start, U.S. consumers notice this label almost as much as they do a "Made in the USA" label (76% vs. 83%). However, over half (57%) said they were less likely to purchase items made in China due to quality and safety concerns. Those who responded positively to products made in China did so due to cheaper prices.

Interestingly, over in China they quite like the "Made in the USA" label, too, found PRS. However, over half (58%) of consumers in China are more positive about a product made in their home country, but not through any sense of patriotism. They, as per Americans, are influenced by cheap product prices.

Recent research in the UK by Savvy Marketing reveals that retailers would do well to highlight products that are "Made in Britain" following a swell in patriotism following a year of celebrations and sport.

Tags: brand marketing, consumer attitudes, product marketing, retail

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