What We’re Reading: Packaged Facts research highlights top trends driving pet industry in 2016

What We’re Reading: Packaged Facts research highlights top trends driving pet industry in 2016

This article originally appeared in the January 2016 issue of Pet Product News.

Jan. 12 - Packaged Facts, provider of market intelligence reports focused on consumer packaged goods, recently published data highlighting the top trends that drove the pet products and services market in 2015 and will continue to do so in 2016.

By 2019, the industry is expected to hit $91.72 billion in sales. In order to increase revenue, more and more retailers are taking advantage of specific trends to maximize potential opportunities in the market.

Findings from the comprehensive report, U.S. Pet Market Outlook, 2015-2016 by Packaged Facts, explain the major trends that will affect pet product sales throughout 2016.

Premiumization of products and services continues, but all is not well. In an earnings conference call, PetSmart stated that it had been placing too much emphasis on premium brands and had not been paying enough attention to mass brands. But because most industry innovation occurs in premium pet products, we can still expect new products to continue to emerge in 2016.

  • The human and pet bond remains a major marketing theme. Pet companies understand that the love humans have for their pets is a driving factor in their spending. We will not see this marketing trend die down anytime soon.
  • Overweight pets are a major health concern for owners. A survey conducted in January 2015 found that only 11 percent of dog owners say they have an overweight dog and 20 percent of cat owners say they have an overweight cat. In reality, just over half of American dogs are overweight, and 58 percent of cats are overweight.

New trends that have begun to emerge and will drive the market in 2016 include:

  • Aging pets require more care. As of January 2015, 39 percent of dog owners have a dog aged 7 and older, while 43 percent of cat owners have a cat in the oldest age bracket. These pet owners are targets for manufacturers of senior pet products and veterinary services. Because older pets require specialized care, prices for senior pet products and services can be well above average, allowing companies to earn more revenue.
  • The pet industry attracts entrepreneurs. A variety of pet startups have opened up shop recently, and it doesn’t look like they’re slowing down any time soon. These new companies are entering the market with innovative products and services for all types of pet owners. Even shows like “Shark Tank” have seen high numbers of pet products looking to make it big, including Fresh Patch, Pet Paint, TurboPUP and more.
  • The pet industry banks on high-income households. The Packaged Facts report identifies upper-income households as a dominant force in the industry, estimating that three-fifths of pet market spending will come from this group.

All six of these trends will be seen this year as major drivers behind retail stores for pet supplies and veterinary and grooming services.