Cinco de Mayo 2024 Pricing Insights: An Analysis of Discounts Amid Inflation

Cinco de Mayo 2024 Pricing Insights: An Analysis of Discounts Amid Inflation

22nd May, 2024


By DataWeave Marketing

Cinco de Mayo is a vibrant celebration of Mexican-American and Hispanic heritage, marked by lively parades, festive tacos, and refreshing tequila across North America. For the service industry, brands, and retailers, this day offers a golden opportunity to roll out enticing promotions on beloved Mexican foods and beverages, drawing in large crowds and boosting sales.

Americans love to indulge in Mexican cuisine during Cinco de Mayo. Take avocados, for example: despite inflation, avocado sales soared to 52.3 million units this year, marking a 25% increase from last year, according to the Hass Avocado Board’s 2023 Holiday Report. Such festive events see a significant sales spike, largely driven by appealing discounts and special offers.

So, what discounts did retailers roll out this Cinco de Mayo?

At DataWeave, our cutting-edge data aggregation and analysis platform tracked and analyzed the prices and deals on Mexican food and alcohol products offered by leading retailers. Our in-depth analysis sheds light on their pricing competitiveness during Cinco de Mayo, revealing how pricing strategies differed across various subcategories and brands.

We conducted a similar analysis in 2022, allowing us to compare the prices of identical products this year versus last year. This comparison helps us understand the impact of inflation over the past two years on the prices offered today.

Our Methodology

For our analysis, we monitored the average discounts offered by major US retailers on over 2,000 food and beverage products during Cinco de Mayo, as well as in the days leading up to the event. Many retailers kick off their Cinco de Mayo promotions a week before, so we included the entire week leading up to May 5th in our analysis.

Key Details:

  • Number of SKUs: 2000+
  • Retailers Analyzed: Target, Amazon Fresh, Safeway, Walmart, Total Wines & More, Sam’s Club, Meijer, Kroger
  • Categories: Food, Alcohol
  • Analysis Period: April 28 – May 5

To truly demonstrate the value of Cinco de Mayo for shoppers, we concentrated on price reductions and additional discounts during the event. By comparing these with regular day discounts, we were able to highlight the genuine savings and benefits that Cinco de Mayo promotions offer to budget-conscious consumers.

Our Findings

Safeway led the pack with the highest average additional discount of 4.91%, covering 38.6% of their food inventory for Cinco de Mayo. Total Wine & More followed closely, offering an average discount of 3.46% across 70.8% of its tequila, whiskey, mezcal, and other spirit products during the Cinco de Mayo week.

In contrast, Target provided minimal additional discounts, averaging just 0.8% over a small fraction (11.6%) of its SKUs. Similarly, Kroger’s additional discounts were also 0.8%, but they were spread across over 60% of its tracked products. Walmart (1.4%) and Amazon Fresh (1.2%) offered relatively conservative discounts during the sale period.

During Cinco de Mayo, various brands rolled out attractive discounts to entice shoppers. Among beverage brands, The American Plains vodka led the way with the highest average discount of 20.80%. Coffee brands also joined the festivities with significant discounts: Death Wish Coffee at 14.30%, Dunkin’ at 11.10%, and Starbucks at 5.70%. Notably, Dunkin’ and Death Wish Coffee introduced complimentary beverages such as whiskey barrel-aged coffee and spiked coffee products to celebrate the event.

In the wine category, Erath stood out with a 10% additional discount. However, brands like Jose Cuervo and Franzia offered more modest discounts of 0.70% and 1.80%, respectively.

Food brands associated with traditional Mexican ingredients or products, such as tortillas, salsas, and spices, provided higher discounts compared to mainstream snack brands. For instance, McCormick (25%), El Monterey (13.3%), and La Tortilla Factory (16.7%)—known for ready-to-eat frozen foods, seasonings, and condiments—delivered the highest discounts. Other notable discounts included Jose Ole (12.5%), a frozen food brand, and Yucatan (8.3%), known for its guacamole.

Safeway’s private label brand, Signature Select, offered a 5.20% discount. Additionally, Safeway provided deep discounts on brands like Pace, Herdez, and Taco Bell, indicating an aggressive discounting strategy. In contrast, brands closely associated with Mexican or Tex-Mex cuisine, such as Old El Paso, Mission, Rosarita, and La Banderita, offered relatively modest discounts ranging from 0.5% to 3.3%.

The discount patterns varied between alcohol and food categories, with food brands generally offering higher discounts. This trend may be attributed to pricing being regulated in the alcohol industry. These differing discount levels highlight how brands navigated the balance between driving sales and maintaining profit margins during Cinco de Mayo, particularly in the context of inflation affecting costs.

Impact of Inflation on Cinco de Mayo Prices (2024 vs 2022)

To gauge the impact of inflation on popular Cinco de Mayo products, we analyzed the average prices at Walmart and Target between 2022 and 2024. These two retailers were chosen due to their prominence in the retail sector and the robustness of our sample data.

At Walmart, the Tex Mex category saw the highest average price increase, rising by 22.51%. Other notable subcategories with significant price hikes include Condiments (23.21%), Vegetables/Packaged Vegetables (21.22%), and Lasagne (14.10%). Categories like Dips & Spreads (13.77%), Pantry Staples (14.92%), and Salsa & Dips (8.23%) experienced relatively lower increases.

At Target, the Snacks subcategory had the steepest average price rise at 27.94%, followed by Meal Essentials (16.07%) and Deli Pre-Pack (8.82%). Categories such as Dairy (0.51%), Frozen Meals/Sides (7.11%), and Adult Beverages (7.41%) saw smaller price increases.

Brands associated with traditional Mexican or Tex-Mex cuisine faced higher price hikes. Examples include Old El Paso (24.59% at Walmart, 8.70% at Target), Tostitos (35.44% at Walmart, 11.41% at Target), Ortega (30.59% at Walmart, 19.69% at Target), and Rosarita (14.39% at Walmart).

In contrast, private label or store brands generally experienced lower price increases compared to national brands. For instance, Good & Gather (Target’s private label) saw a 9.55% increase, while Market Pantry (Walmart’s private label) had a 17.27% rise. This trend is understandable as retailers have more control over their costs with private label brands.

The data clearly indicates that both Walmart and Target have significantly raised prices across various categories and brands, reflecting the broader inflationary environment where the cost of goods and services has been steadily climbing.

Interestingly, we observed higher price increases at Walmart compared to Target. Although Walmart is renowned for its consumer-friendly pricing strategies, it too had to elevate grocery prices post-2022 to combat inflationary pressures. As consumers become more cost-conscious and reduce spending on discretionary items, Walmart and other retailers are now cutting prices across categories to align with shifting consumer behaviors.

Mastering Pricing Strategies During Sale Events

Our pricing analysis for Cinco de Mayo reveals compelling insights into the dynamics of retailer landscapes in the US. It highlights the enduring relevance of private label brands, even amidst fluctuating demand, showing the emergence of local, national, and small players vying for market share.

As retailers navigate inflationary pressures and evolving consumer behaviors, understanding these pricing dynamics becomes crucial for optimizing strategies and bolstering market competitiveness. This analysis offers actionable intelligence for retailers seeking to navigate the intricate terrain of sale event promotions while addressing shifting consumer preferences and economic challenges.

Access to reliable and timely pricing data equips retailers and brands with the tools needed to make informed decisions and drive profitable growth in an increasingly competitive environment. To learn more and gain guidance, reach out to us to speak to a DataWeave expert today!

- DataWeave Marketing
22nd May, 2024

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