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    ACNielsen to More Than Double Size of U.S. Homescan Consumer Panel

    SCHAUMBURG, Ill. - ACNielsen U.S., an operating unit of ACNielsen, a VNU business, this week announced plans to more than double the size of its Homescan consumer panel, the single largest expansion in the history of this industry-leading service.

    SCHAUMBURG, Ill. - ACNielsen U.S., an operating unit of ACNielsen, a VNU business, this week announced plans to more than double the size of its Homescan consumer panel, the single largest expansion in the history of this industry-leading service.

    Steve Schmidt, president, VNU Marketing Information, the Americas, said, "VNU understands that the growing complexity of today's consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry is driving greater demand for more detailed information across a wider variety of retail channels and ever more granular views of consumer shopping behavior. Increasing the size of our consumer panel will enable us to give clients crucial new insights into fast-growing retail channels such as dollar stores and warehouse club stores, more specifically defined population segments, and emerging product categories."

    The ACNielsen Homescan consumer panel provides the CPG community insights into what types of households buy specific categories or brands, how often and where they shop, their use of coupons and other promotions, and a host of other facts and insights, including attitudinal and usage information. Members of the panel, now numbering 61,500 households, are equipped with patented in-home scanners. Using these hand-held devices, household members record their purchases of UPC-coded products, prescription medications, and fresh foods/random weight items. This information is then downloaded to ACNielsen for analysis.

    According to Tim Callahan, president, ACNielsen U.S., the expanded Homescan Mega*Panel will deliver the CPG industry's most complete and innovative analysis of consumer behavior. "CPG manufacturers have expressed the need for more in-depth information about specific retailers and growth channels to support their category management initiatives," he said. "Retailers, on the other hand, are looking for new insights into their key competitors within their trading areas and more granular category-level and market-basket analyses. We will meet these needs and more through our significantly expanded panel services."

    Robert Tomei, general manager/executive VP, ACNielsen U.S. Homescan business, said the panel expansion is part of a continuous Homescan innovation process designed to give clients a consumer-centric view of their business. "Our focus is on delivering insights for action. Through our recently launched Consumer Direct initiative, for example, the Homescan consumer panel is helping drive online direct-marketing campaigns to new levels of effectiveness and measurability. The Mega*Panel will allow for further linkages of our information content with retailers' frequent-shopper databases to drive more effective in-store marketing and with direct-mail databases for more effective at-home marketing."

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