Wet markets and traditional stores remain the preferred retail channels for Vietnamese shoppers, though they are under threat as consumers shift away, according to a Nielsen report.

The two have seen a decline in sales of 5 percent and 17 percent respectively since 2012, said the report which was released on May 27, adding that the frequency of visits also decreased.

While consumers have become more "savvy" in their shopping behaviour in recent years, the need for convenience continues to grow.

In Vietnam, store expansion also continues to gain momentum, especially in urban areas.

Convenience stores more than doubled from 147 in 2012 to 348 last year, while mini marts increased from 863 to 1452.

This new demand is being led by time-poor and predominantly young shoppers in making everyday food and grocery purchases, and has been a key driver in convenience store expansion.

Some 22 percent of consumers shop for food and grocery more often at convenience stores compared to 12 months ago.

Food and beverages are driving convenience store sales, with 86 percent of consumers buying either and 62 percent of beverage buyers also buying food and 51 percent of food buyers also buying beverages.

Vaughan Ryan, Managing Director of Nielsen Vietnam, said: "Convenience is not a store front, but rather a way of life. Consumers are increasingly demanding products and solutions that help them in their increasingly busy life.

"As a result we will see the emergence in Vietnam of both the convenience channel and e-commerce to meet this consumer demand."

To address these shifts, retailers must deepen their understanding of this evolving shopper behaviour, foresee changing needs and develop strategies that are focused on differentiation in areas that matter most to shoppers, he added.-VNA