Tracking the rise of discount shopping in America

  • December 21, 2022

A closer look at discount store visitation in 2022.

Today’s economic climate could present an optimal opportunity for America’s discount retailers to grow and build a loyal customer following. As inflation has risen this past year, so has discount retailers’ share of wallet, as more consumers turn to stores like Dollar General, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, 99 Cents Only and Five Below for the best prices on everyday essentials.

In fact, according to NRF*, discount and off-price retailers account for half of the top 10 fastest-growing retail companies in the United States. Five Below, for instance, generated over 40% sales growth in 2021 vs 2020.

Many shoppers tend to turn to discount and off-price retailers in times of necessity. This makes it rather difficult for brands to gain and retain loyal customers ongoing. Today’s economic climate is an ideal time for discount retailers to shine, but looking ahead, what will it take for discount stores to retain newly acquired customers as conditions improve? To help answer this question, we set out to leverage Foursquare’s location intelligence to analyze key metrics such as share of wallet, share of category visits, venue count per capita and category foot traffic correlations to provide a more accurate assessment of the changing landscape and customer loyalty in America.

With a deep understanding of how people move around the real world, Foursquare is uniquely positioned to measure loyalty based on true consumer behavior, rather than reported behavior and brand perception. In our latest analysis, we unpack geographical nuances of discount store visitation over the past year, to provide deeper insights surrounding the competitive landscape and identify areas of opportunity for today’s discount retailers to capitalize on.