Cupcake sales stronger than ever

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Cupcakes have gained momentum in the bakery department, with a sales increase of 56 percent in the last five years. While cupcakes hold the third highest dollar share within the cakes category (behind decorated cakes and dessert cakes), cupcake performance drove category growth in the 52 weeks ending May 26, 2012, with a 17.1 percent dollar sales increase compared to the previous year. Cupcakes also continue to gain dollar share within the cakes category, up 1.3 percent, while decorated cakes lost 1.4 share points.

In the 52 weeks ending May 26, 2012, cupcakes’ national average contribution to in-store bakery sales was 3.7 percent, a 0.4 percent increase compared to the previous year. Cupcakes averaged sales of $388 per store per week, a 16 percent increase from the previous year.

The highest sales for cupcakes occurred the week ending Feb. 18, 2012, the week of Valentine’s Day, with $946 per store per week. Another significant peak week for cupcake sales was the week ending Dec. 24, 2011, when sales averaged $618 per store, or 28.4 percent growth compared to the previous year. Cupcakes experienced their lowest sales during the week of Dec. 3, 2011, with $255 per store. This week is traditionally low-selling for cupcakes, as it follows the Thanksgiving holiday when pies dominate bakery department sales.

Average weekly sales for cupcakes grew nationally and in each region compared to the previous year. The Central region had the highest average sales with $487 per store per week, well above the national average of $388. The East region also slightly surpassed the national average with $389 in weekly sales per store. Although the East region’s cupcakes had the lowest contribution to the bakery department with 2.6 percent, the East had the highest weekly dollar sales increase, up 18.1 percent. Both the South and West regions increased weekly dollar sales, up 17.7 and 12.7 percent, respectively. The South region tied the Central region for highest contribution to the bakery department at 4.3 percent.

Within cupcakes, assorted/variety cupcakes accounted for 27.1 percent of total cupcake sales nationally during the 52 weeks ending May 26, 2012, followed by mini cupcakes at 21.9 percent. The remaining varieties results included chocolate cupcakes at 14.4 percent contribution, yellow/gold cupcakes at 12.4 percent, white cupcakes at 9.9 percent, cupcake cakes at 8.6 percent and other cupcakes at 5.6 percent.

All cupcake varieties increased dollar sales during the 52-week time period. Nationally, other cupcakes had the most significant dollar growth, up 48.5 percent, followed by mini cupcakes, which increased 22.2 percent. Other increases by variety include assorted/variety cupcakes (16.8 percent), cupcake cakes (16.3 percent), chocolate cupcakes (13.0 percent), yellow/gold cupcakes (11.3 percent) and white cupcakes (8.2 percent).

This sales review is provided by Nielsen Perishables Group. Based in Chicago, Nielsen Perishables Group specializes in measurement, analytics, marketing communications, category development, promotional best practices and shopper insights. Reported results are for May 28, 2011, through May 26, 2012, representing more than 62 percent of national supermarket ACV share.

Source: Modern Baking