The Latest Market Intelligence on London Consumers

September 26, 2017 - 8 minute read

Do you sell to the  folks who live and work in the Big Smoke (aka London)? Then you need this insight about Londoners' views and beliefs.

We’ve taken a look across several of our recent surveys - on topics ranging from media usage to food preferences - and segmented them by London respondents to create a dossier of up-to-date London market research findings.

We’ve only included people who both live and work in London, so you can get clear cut facts about this key demographic. Before you get started on your strategy, check out these compelling statistics to learn more about how Londoners think, feel and act.

Media Consumption

London media consumption.jpg

London may be a fast-paced city but its inhabitants still feel like they watch plenty of telly. Live and streamed TV are both as equally popular, with almost 30% of Londoners reporting that they watch 3-4 hours of both each day.  While it's hard to believe that many Londoners do consume that much TV and streaming every day, it's interesting to note that they feel their consumption is so heavy.

YouTube is also a major source of entertainment for Londoners, 29% of whom report spending 3-4 hours per day watching videos on the platform!  Again, this seems very high, but goes to show how much video content Londoners feel they're viewing.

When it comes to social media, those in the capital are most likely to be found on Facebook (52% say this is the social media platform they use the most) and 35% check their news feed more than 4 times a day. However, Snapchat and Instagram are becoming more popular, with around 10% of Londoners questioned becoming users this year.

Looking at how Londoners find products when they want to make a purchase online, 40% report going straight to Google, with the next most popular platform being Amazon. If you’re thinking of targeting city folk online with popups, be warned, 54% say they have ad-blockers installed on their laptops or PCs.

It’s better to focus on mobile marketing, with only 19% of phones and 15% of tablets equipped with ad-blocking software. 

Want even more insight into the UK’s media consumption habits? Download our free, in-depth report now!

Food & Drink Habits

Despite the plethora of restaurants and takeaway options in the capital, most Londoners report eating out in the evening once a week (49%), preferring to cook freshly prepared meals at home.

Most Londoners say that they get their 5-a-day fruit and veg (41%), while a further 18% say they exceed this healthy benchmark. However, 39% admit to only consuming 1-2 pieces of fruit or veg per day.

For the most part, grocery shopping is still done on a weekly basis by 56%, with 42% physically going into a store and 14% shopping online. Others do their grocery shopping as required (19%) or have no consistent pattern (25%).

London shoppers are quite price sensitive, with 39% stating they would swap brands if the cost rose above 10%, and 13.5% reporting to have already swapped because of price rises. A brand that London dwellers would be reluctant to give up however, is Heinz.

They’re less concerned with penny pinching when eating out; spending £21-30 per head on food and drink excluding tip (40%). A further 33% report paying a little less (£11-20). However, there are very few who like to really indulge, with only 2% spending more than £50 per person on a meal out. When it comes to tipping, 10% is the standard (paid by 32%), although 13.5% admit to not tipping at all.

pizza.jpgTakeaways are the go-to choice for Londoners when they don’t feel like cooking, and most people get takeaway food once (51%) or twice (19%) a week. And while curry might be one of our nation’s favourite dishes, pizza is the top takeaway treat for people in London (25%), followed by Chinese (20%) and then curry (12%). They will spend £11-20 on a takeaway (45%) and order it online or via an app (68% combined).

During the working week, Londoners say they eat lunch at their desks (47%) and it will typically be something they’ve brought from home (35%) or got from a local shop (34%). 

Want even more insight into the UK’s food and drink habits? Download our free, in-depth report now!

Digital Preferences

Living in the big city and being bombarded with advertisements and marketing messages, you might expect Londoners to be fed up with brands trying to sell to them. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.

The largest proportion (28%) of London dwellers believe a brand should email them weekly after they’ve purchased from them. They don’t find personalisation creepy, they think it’s helpful (72%) and 48% actively follow brands on social media to hear about offers and discounts.

They’re happy to receive advertising if it means they can get something they want for free (73%). The medium that Londoners most prefer receiving promotions and marketing by is email (58%). Email is also the prefered channel for customer support (59%), with live chat second (55%).

When it comes to consuming advertising on social media, Facebook is the clear favourite (67%), with YouTube coming next (34%). While a social presence makes it easier for customers to complain publicly, only 32% say they have used it for that purpose in the last 6 months.

Despite the increasing sophistication of mobile web pages, Londoners still prefer to access digital services through a dedicated app (72%), so it could be worth launching one for your brand.

Another potential opportunity is engaging Londoners in developing your brand - 45% say they have never been consulted by a business they buy from. One easy way to involve your customers is by sending out consumer surveys seeking their views.

Perception of Innovative Companies

What companies do Londoners admire? We asked them which companies they believed to be the most innovative across industries including banking, insurance, fashion, telecommunications and automotive manufacture. Here’s what they said:

  • Bank Londoners think is the most innovative: Barclays (18.7%)
  • Supermarket Londoners think is the most innovative: Tesco (21.9%)
  • Insurance company Londoners think is the most innovative: Direct Line (26.4%)
  • Car manufacturer Londoners think is the most innovative: Audi (17.2%)
  • Fashion retailer Londoners think is the most innovative: Primark (22%)
  • Telecommunication provider Londoners think is the most innovative: EE (23.8%)
  • Entertainment provider Londoners think is the most innovative: Netflix (29.7%)
  • Social network Londoners think is the most innovative: Facebook (37.4%)
  • Consumer electronic company Londoners think is the most innovative: Apple (48.9%)
  • Online property service Londoners think is the most innovative: RightMove (27.2%)
  • Music service Londoners think is the most innovative: Spotify (37.1%)
  • Airline Londoners think is the most innovative: Virgin Atlantic (26.1%)
  • Event technology company Londoners think is the most innovative: Ticketmaster (43.9%)

View the full list of the UK’s most innovative companies, as voted for by 2000 consumers.

The Big Issues

What are the things that really make Londoners tick? What issues are on their minds, and are they fundamentally happy with their lives? These are the big questions, and the ones we answer here.

Stop_The_War_protests_in_London,_2007-02-24.jpgAccording to London dwellers, the number one issue that humanity should be focusing on right now is stopping war (24.5%). Curing diseases like cancer and alzheimer's are also up there at the top, cited by (18%), while only 3% think spreading democracy is a pressing issue.

In fact, most Londoners actually remain unsure of their political beliefs (42%). The second largest group (18%) define themselves as socially liberal and in favour of a free market.

They’re an optimistic bunch - with 69% believing their friends would describe them as optimists, and 51% believing their life will be better than their parents. To achieve success, they’re relying on their work ethic (25%) and intelligence (22%), which they believe are most likely to determine their achievements.

When thinking about satisfaction with their lives, the statement that most Londoners agree with is that they’re content in their relationship (50.5%). 33% believe they have a healthy work/life balance and 32% are happy with their appearance. When it comes to sex, 31% report to being satisfied, while only 27% think they get enough exercise.

Most Londoners believe being a good partner or parent is the most important thing in life, good health comes second, while enjoying life is third in order of importance. Giving back and helping others is fifth down the list, and 27.5% of people in London give to charity on a monthly basis.

When asked about topical issues, a whopping 60.5% said people should have a legal right to die with dignity, while 28% think transgender toilets are a good thing. Furthermore, 43% of Londoners believe marriage is an important institution, but only 15% think religion is a positive influence on the world.

Londoners remain unconvinced about Brexit, with just 27 believing it will be good for the UK.

Pre-register for our latest, most in-depth report yet, on the attitudes, beliefs and behaviours that define each generation, from the hotly debated ‘Gen Z’ cohort to the still economically mighty ‘Boomers’.


So there we have it; the latest pulse of London to guide your approach to this valuable target market. With this intelligence you can better tailor your product offering, make your marketing more effective, and improve customer communications.

Looking for something even more specific? Then why not send out a consumer survey of your own? With Attest you can choose to target respondents in any given geographic area or poll a representative sample across the UK and segment your findings.

It’s simple to break your responses down by home or work location, age, gender, employment status and much more, allowing you to drill down as far as you desire and discover a wealth of intel in your data.

Book a demo today or call us on 0330 808 4746 to chat to our team of consumer insight experts.

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