Social media influence, personalization, uniqueness—we already know the consumer trends in the Asia-Pacific region. Now, it’s time to look at what the whole world is expecting from businesses.

Global market research company Euromonitor International conducted a survey in 100 countries to find out what consumers are looking for this 2021. Here’s what they found out.

More than profit

Consumers will opt for more sustainable ways of purchasing, especially if it’s a company that’s more value-driven instead of being solely profit-oriented. The top priority of consumers pre-pandemic was to reduce plastic use, followed by concerns over climate change, and this will continue in 2021. They also expect brands to protect the well-being of their employees while also aiding local communities. In essence, having a social purpose will win over more consumers.

Swift and seamless

With usual activities suspended due to the pandemic, consumers will look for experiences that are fast yet uncompromising. Most events won’t be by impulse anymore—they have to be pre-planned. Digital commerce will also provide a way to cater to customers without slowing down any of the original processes. Basically, there has to be a resilient customer experience.

Necessary escape

With consumers spending most of their time indoors, they will need  an avenue where they can feel free without neglecting health and safety protocols. Dining outdoors is an opportunity for people to reconnect outside their homes, support their mental and physical well-being, and satisfy their need for human interaction.

Consumers will turn to brands that stand for self-improvement and balance. With all the adversities the world has struggled to weather, businesses must gain consumers’ trust by prioritizing their well-being.

The phygital state

The physical and digital worlds will unite to provide consumers a way to live amid a crisis. Businesses can deliver at-home experiences by enabling virtual processes to be part of the lifestyle such as ordering, booking, and scheduling online. The phygital reality will recreate in-person occasions until it’s time to return to physical spaces.

Telling time

Work and personal life tend to blur the longer the work-from-home setup drags on. The challenge is multitasking and being creative in the way they handle time and identify priorities. Because of this, businesses need to be flexible in order to fit the needs of their customers. One solution is to create a 24-hour service culture. Footfall is decreasing and customers are staying indoors as much as possible. Brands have to keep themselves visible online where consumers are always on the lookout for products and services.

Social involvement

Brands can cater to the youth market, which are more vocal about their social and political stance. They expect facts and want brands to act. In the age of misinformation, social media marketing has to be precise and personalized to remain relevant.

Safety first

The answer is more contactless solutions. There is heightened consumer awareness, and efficiency and cleanliness aren’t something to be hailed—they are expected. Consumers will scrutinize safety standards and demand necessary procedures, which is why businesses must quickly adapt to their health-conscious needs. A safe and trusted brand image is a valuable asset for any business.

Overall well-being

Consumers will turn to brands that stand for self-improvement and balance. With all the adversities the world has struggled to weather, businesses must gain consumers’ trust by prioritizing their well-being. Functional food and other products that support mindfulness will aid in dismantling stress factors such as isolation, routines, and economic hardships. Consumers will need to reconfigure their life in order to cope, so businesses will have to focus on these lifestyle conditions.

Value for money

A recessionary mindset is now instilled among consumers. Affordable options with the right quality is a key attribute businesses should pay attention to. It has to be tied with health and wellness, mental health and self-care. The economic uncertainty has driven most consumers in a state of frugality, which is why there is decreased consumer confidence. With this, businesses should identify which among their market are willing to pay a premium and then adjust their portfolios along the way.

Recreating the workspace

What would define the start and end of a person’s regular work day now that it’s a remote setup? What businesses can do is support the productivity, communication and work-life balance of their consumers. It’s time to rethink product positioning and work on improving efficiency without losing the human element. Food businesses can specifically focus on creating restaurant-quality meals at home and making them more accessible.

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