This is the second in a series of three posts after my visit to the grand opening of the Lidl stores in Greenville and Spartanburg, South Carolina. It has been widely reported that the store would have a very high penetration of private brand, and the reporting was accurate, the penetration easily exceeds 90% of the set.

But let’s look a little deeper, what makes up their private brand portfolio. The portfolio is organized into a rather traditional three-tiered structure. The retailer then adds specialty/niche or category focused brands or package designs for things like health and beauty, beer, and randomly nuts or seasonal products.

At its core, the portfolio is dominated by a national brand equivalent mid-tier that’s most surprising feature is that it is unbranded. The front of the pack is devoid of any name or logo. Not even the small wordmarks favored by Waitrose and Ikea. I cannot honestly say that I like this, the packs look fine on the shelf, but the unbranded products will certainly be lost in the average American pantry.

The only hint of the connection to Lidl is the distribution clause on the side, back or bottom of products.

Lidl US, LLC
3500 S Clark Street
Arlington, VA 22202


Some of the products also carry the “Lidl Love it! Guarantee” mark on the back of the pack as well as exclusively at Lidl lock up.

Best Preferred Selection Specialty imported food products from Belgium, Germany, Italy, etc.
Better Unbranded (Lidl)

Unbranded/Organic Design (Lidl)

Unbranded/Gluten Free Design (Lidl)

Traditional national brand equivalent private label products
Good Unbranded/Essentials Design A small selection of basic/extreme value products (coffee, condiments, salad dressings)


Perhaps the most exciting part of the entire private brand experience in the store is Lidl’s unabashed confidence and pride in their products. They always have prominent placement and every endcap and corner are used to promote their own products. From their premium Preferred Selection to their amazing breadth of Organic products.

The store also featured a large set of specialty Italian products using the Italiamo private brand. This set is supposed to change throughout the year and feature other brands and specialty products designed to drive traffic and energy in the store.

Finally, there are seasonal products, cleaning and HBC and beer, this is where the store feels the most like an Aldi. They have clearly adopted a similar strategy and created a large portfolio of category relevant, credible sounding brands that fit squarely into the expected space in each category.

The first story in the Series:

Previous articleVelocity Early Bird Pricing Ends Monday!
Next articlePB CAREERS: Amazon – Sr. Category Manager, Consumables Private Brands
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.