Consumers nowadays are more motivated than ever to make informed and mindful decisions in their purchasing behaviour. To keep up with these ever-evolving behaviours and influences, businesses require high agility and adaptability to facilitate essential reform. Stay on top of the curve with our guide to the pivotal trends impacting consumer attitudes and spending habits in 2022.
As consumers, our choices make a paramount impact on the trends and trajectories of future businesses and innovation. The paradigm shift brought during the pandemic caused radical change to our lifestyles, causing consumer behaviour and spending habits to pivot. In this new normal, consumers are increasingly being driven by altruistic motives and mindful approaches, carefully deliberating their social, as well as environmental impact.
Conscious shopping is the way forward for most modern-day consumers. A 2022 report detailed some interesting revelations on consumer trends in Asia Pacific, reporting that up to 95% of the respondents were willing to pay more for environmentally friendly products, while 46% of them listed health as their main purchasing criteria, followed by environmental and social benefits. The trend especially prevalent amongst younger mindful shoppers who are committed to driving intentional, sustainable, and meaningful consumption.
Aside from spending on greener solutions, consumers desire more connected and holistic offerings, seeking personalised experiences that go far beyond the traditional appeal of products and services. Moreover, being isolated for almost two years, our lives have been majorly shifted online, where consumers value and prioritise digital experiences. This rapid digital adoption and technological innovation has further prompted significant change in consumer behaviour and purchasing habits.
Needless to say, with the changing times, it has become essential for businesses to pivot and innovate new possible solutions, and address transformed consumer needs and demands, while driving real-time engagement and connections with their customers in the long run.
Being shut into our homes during lockdown caused many to reassess their priorities and living situation. During the pandemic, homes become more than just our sanctuaries where we eat, rest, and reset; offices pivoted their operations and offered their employees flexible schedules, prompting the growth of remote working and alternative work-from-home models.
As homes became the hub of all our essential activities, individuals required solutions to accommodate this shift. An Accenture study exploring the future of work reported that around 46% of the respondents planned on working remotely moving forward. Up to 28% of consumers have since invested in long-term household amenities, including home theatres, gyms, and even studios. Businesses need to take these homebodies into consideration and innovate solutions that cater to this emerging market.
Consumers are now seeking brands with meaningful stories to tell and a strong voice that appeals to them, deeming this essential to building a connection with the businesses they engage with. A humanised brand has a greater ability to convey their message more seamlessly, while offering a scope for personalised solutions, that create higher value.
Around 57% of customers are likely to shop at brands with strong personalities, while 51% have purchased with brands due to their online presence and the way they marketed themselves.
While consumers offer great input in deciding “what stays and what goes away”, brands hold the power to influence and implement those trends. A valuable brand story and well thought out marketing campaign can go a long way in not just attracting new customers, but also advocating for change and building the trends of tomorrow.
After almost two years of pandemic-induced isolation, individuals are looking to build a sense of connectivity and community, which heavily reflects on a brand’s ability to deliver this.While “community” has become a popular buzzword, many may still ponder what it truly means. For most, “brand communities” exist within digital and social realms, where consumers from all walks of life can connect and build on their fondness for the brand, or a certain product, and even a particular campaign that stuck with them.
Consumers are no longer buying products as mere solutions to their immediate needs, but are rather leaning towards what keeps them inspired, and makes them a part of the big picture. As businesses seek to build on this narrative, it is important to first streamline branding, while strategising their product, marketing, and placement to directly appeal and build up a greater community that they aspire to build.
People who truly resonate with a brand’s vision and product are inclined to further spread the message and connect others with their mission, which is why community building plays an integral role in engaging customers, narrating stories, and building loyalty in the long run.
Hybrid Shopping Experiences
While most are well-acquainted with hybrid work culture, similarly, hybrid shopping experiences offer consumers the option to seamlessly switch between traditional brick-and-mortar stores, online e-commerce platforms, and other alternatives. Up to 46% of modern-day consumers have expressed their preferences towards the classic way of shopping in person, and enjoy an interconnected shopping experience, from touching and feeling, to trying products. Those who prefer online experiences over in-person shopping indicate that they do not limit their options to digital commerce exclusively.
For many shoppers, having a physical presence is still crucial to their shopping experience, as it brings back a sense of nostalgia. Even though online shopping offers consumers more options to select from as well as improved accessibility and usability, in person shopping is still here to stay.
Sustainability and Transparency
Consumers now take an active approach to carefully deliberate and research brands to find alignment with their personal values and beliefs. At present, sustainability and holistic wellbeing are at the forefront of consumers’ decision-making, given the heightened attention and prevalence of global health and climate crises. In 2021, 85% of global consumers made an important shift towards “greener” consumption of products and services.
To facilitate this, consumers require high levels of transparency on the sustainable practices within a brand, regarding their product manufacturing, employee wellbeing, operational, as well as other undertakings. These shifting consumer trends further emphasise changing world dynamics and the significance of prioritising customer satisfaction, driving brands to adopt sustainable and environmentally friendly initiatives in order to stay relevant.
Customer experience has swiftly evolved, and taken on a new course, triggering important reform to our shopping behaviour and habits. Consumers now hope to impact change with their every purchase, and are more aware and sensitive of their consumption than ever.
In response, they are seeking brands that can cater to their holistic and mindful approaches. While a business’ success is greatly dependent on its ability to deliver an on demand product or service, it goes without saying that brands need to enact necessary change to keep up with evolving consumer behaviour.