Top 10 consumer global trends for 2021

The coronavirus pandemic is shaping this year’s top global consumer trends, including building back better and shifting to safety and hygiene, which brands can take note to further improve their products.

The Euromonitor Digest said consumers demand that companies care beyond revenue, and they no longer perceive businesses as profit-driven entities.

It said protecting the health and interest of society and the planet is the new expectation following coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), in order to Build Back Better.

Companies should help reshape the world in a more sustainable way, leading a shift from a volume- to a value-driven economy and turning the tide on social inequity and environmental damage,” said the monthly online publication of the Department of Trade and Industry-Export Marketing Bureau (DTI-EMB).

The report said consumers are Craving Convenience of the pre-pandemic world, longing for the ease taken for granted before daily habits were upended.

“Businesses are under pressure to rapidly adapt their operations to develop a resilient customer experience while maintaining convenience. Companies must preserve the swift and seamless shopping journey across all channels,” it added.

Amid the pandemic, health threats, indoor meeting, mobility restrictions, and the rise of remote working results in consumers turning to an Outdoor Oasis for leisure and recreation.

While some others are even considering moving from densely populated cities to rural areas.

“Businesses incorporated advanced health measures and moved events outside, allowing consumers to reconnect out of the home more safely. Companies should pivot their product development strategy to encompass the tranquillity of rural living in urban environments to better satisfy city-scapers,” the Euromonitor Digest said

The report also underscored the collision of physical and digital worlds.

Phygital Reality is a hybrid of physical and virtual worlds where consumers can seamlessly live, work, shop, and play both in person and online.

“Businesses can integrate virtual processes into their physical spaces to give consumers who prefer to stay home the comfort to venture out instead. Delivering virtually enabled at-home experiences remains imperative to drive e-commerce sales and gather data,” it added.

Playing with Time is another global trend as consumers are now both able and forced to be more creative with their time to get everything done.

The report said firms thus need to provide solutions that address the consumer desire to maximize time, offering increased flexibility, especially with products and services that can be accessed from or near the home.

It said more consumers are “fed up” as distrust in leadership has become the norm and bias and misinformation are causing a crisis of confidence.

“Companies can cater to the Restless and Rebellious via more precise marketing on social media and gaming, where they can give consumers a voice and pressure social giants to take on misinformation,” it added.

As Safety Obsessed is the new wellness movement, the Euromonitor Digest said the fear of infection and increased health awareness drive demand for hygiene products and push consumers towards contactless solutions to avoid exposure.

To meet these needs, the report said it is imperative to implement enhanced safety measures and innovations that target concerns to reassure consumers.

It said the global pandemic has reconfigured daily lives, testing mental resilience, restricting experiences, and provoking economic shocks.

“Businesses must provide products and services that support resiliency for mental wellbeing and to help Shaken and Stirred consumers weather adverse circumstances to gain trust,” it added.

Moreover, the Euromonitor Digest said they should also pivot towards value-for-money propositions, offering affordable options without sacrificing quality, with the rise of thrifters who are prioritizing value-added and health-conscious products and services.

“Premium attributes should be reinforced with a new empathetic story and have a strong tie-in with health and wellness, self-care or mental wellbeing,” it said.

The report further cited the trend to recreate the office environment remotely as Workplaces in New Spaces had a rippling effect on consumer life, from clothing choices to technology spend to eating habits and beyond.

“Businesses must support work-life balance, productivity and communication needs. Understanding the benefits and challenges of working remotely allows companies to bring the best of the office into the home,” it added.

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