According to Euromonitor, the highly respected research group, “The looming uncertainty over the global economy has turned consumers into more value-conscious, mobile, experience-hungry, social sharing, green enthusiasts.”
Their report “Global Consumer Trends for 2012” lists over 20 trends that they believe will affect us and our economies. But unlike the usual good news predictions that we get this time of year, Euromonitor also predicts the downsides. Here are some of their points:
● Although many consumers cannot always afford to “buy green”, they will still expect manufacturers to be committed to the environment and recycling.
● Surprisingly, it is predicted that companies will help their customers to consume less of their products.
● Low income urban consumers are now one of the largest markets
● Companies that are transparent with a caring and human side will attract consumer respect. Companies that are not will continue to attract the consumer vigilantes.
● Conscious consumption will replace unnecessary consumption. The search goes on for a more meaningful life.
● More goods will be shared through rental rather than purchased for sole use. (This was also a prediction made for the 21st century by other organisations in the 1990’s.)
● Income inequality will increase in 2012. An example from the US is quoted where the richest 10% earn 37 more times more than the poorest.
● Unemployment, but mainly youth unemployment, will escalate into a very serious problem. Already in Spain over 50% of young people aged between 15 years and 24 years are without work.
● Grocery retailers will continue their expansion, probably by taking each other’s customers.
● Jewellery sales and warehouse clubs will prosper. And more people will be buying online using their mobile.
● Convenience foods and snacking will continue to be increasingly popular, making eating and drinking while you work, shop or whatever you do on the go to be the norm. Time, perhaps, for those “no-eating-or-drinking signs” to come down from shop entrances, if you want the customers to come in.
This is the link to the full report: http://blog.euromonitor.com/2011/12/predictions-for-2012.html