Brandless tackles “Brand Tax” in the Grocery Industry

Living a healthier lifestyle often becomes another expensive habit that sways people away from buying organic, non gmo food. Brandless, an online grocery store, found a way to make food more affordable by taking away “the brand” from products that customers are often caught paying for. Everything on the site is a flat $3, with $5 shipping unless enrolled in the “B-More” program which offers free shipping on orders $48 and more. The website carries food, household supplies, beauty items, personal care products, home and office supplies and health products.

The products themselves are inexpensive and are meant to align with the emerging trend among consumers who have an increasing interest is spending less on private label goods. Millennials are less brand-loyal than past generations which means retailers like Brandless are able to tap in to and access those preferences that millennials have discovered in a growing market.

The site itself doesn’t carry a huge selection, but carries items that are essential and nonperishables. Most of it is a version of a popular food item, but Brandless’ version is always non-GMO, always free from artificial preservatives, flavors and colors, and organic. The secret to what Brandless offers is the company’s elimination of the “brand tax.”

In comparison to other stores, such as Amazon, Brandless stacks up as the better option most of the time. Brandless has a 5.5-oz box of Duck Shaped Cheese Crackers for $3, or $.55/oz. These crackers are meant to be the same taste as Pepperidge Farm Gold Fish Crackers do. Amazon sells an 8-oz package of Organic Goldfish for $3.99, or $.50/oz which is the better bargain. However, Brandless has Crushed Pepper and Truffle Oil Popcorn 2/$3, or $.50/oz compared to Gourmet Basics Crushed Pepper and Truffle Oil Popcorn on Amazon that’s $.57/oz if you buy 12 (4.4-oz) bags of it.

Brandless also sells items such as feminine hygiene products which include organic tampons, organic top sheet pads, and pantyliners for prices that seem comparable to national brands.  The catch is to focus on the quality of the products as well as the price and so far Brandless has been doing a good job with keeping up with the other big competitors.

Brandless started out as a pure-play sales site that exclusively sold other retailers’ offerings and found enough demand in the market for affordable private labels that they decided to make a move. Taking such a big risk has paid off so far for the company and will only continue to pay off as the core values of the company are upheld and consistency is withheld.

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