Analyst Insight by Daphne Kasriel-Alexander - Consumer Trends Consultant
The consumer desire to be thrifty, kick-started by the ‘Great Recession’, has not dissolved as the financial health of many consumers slowly improves. An interesting and growing trend sees the development of more real world and online brands meeting the consumer interest in substantial savings on essentials, whether this is expressed via interest in ‘substandard’ just-past its sell-by date produce, “ugly food”, or in welcoming ‘pre-loved’ branded goods resold by the company that originally made them, or by other consumers.
Continue reading "Consumers Sense Frugal Beauty in Imperfection" »
Frugal innovation, or removing non-essential and often costly features from a product or service, can be a win-win for business – because it’s a process which is sustainable, cost-effective, and potentially very rewarding in terms of extending reach to new consumers. At its heart, frugal innovation is about focusing on customers, observing their core needs and designing products, services and business models that meet these needs.
Not just for emerging market consumers
In the past, frugal innovation has been seen as an idea for emerging market consumers and indeed many impressive ideas have come out of emerging and developing countries.
Continue reading "Frugal Innovation: When Less is More and Simplicity Sells" »
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As internet penetration grows in both emerging and developed markets, consumer concern about privacy and safeguarding personal information grows alongside it. This topic has been highlighted by a number of recent scandals regarding privacy breaches from both government organizations and from brands. These have pressed both consumers and brands to consider the ethics surrounding the use of consumer data. Listen to the podcast for complete insights.
Continue reading "Why Online Privacy Matters to both Consumers and Brands" »
As most expected, the UK budget was not characterised by endless pre-election giveaways, however an important point was the forecast reduction in public debt. A sign of austerity working? More a sign of low inflation, reducing debt repayments, asset selling and real GDP growth. In 2014, UK public debt was the ninth highest in the EU, slightly above the EU average, but lower than France, Spain and Italy. In constant terms it increased by 75% since 2008 and reached £24,313 per capita last year. The government’s forecast of 71.6% of GDP in 2020 will take it back down to 2009-2010 levels, but remaining way higher than pre-crisis.
Continue reading "UK Budget 2015: Debt Reduction is Not Assured" »
Analyst Insight by Ugne Saltenyte - City Analyst
During the global economic downturn, household incomes fell in most of the developed world. Seven years later, in 2014, key North American cities had mostly recovered, with their average household disposable incomes being on average 4% higher than before the crisis in 2007. In Western Europe, household incomes exceeded the pre-crisis levels in a third of the major metropolises. However, regardless of the development in the average living standards, the urban poor (defined as the lowest-earning 10% of households in the city) still found themselves earning less in 2014 than they did in 2007 across both North America and Western Europe.
Change in Average Disposable Income of the Lowest-Earning 10% (decile 1) and the Highest-Earning 10% (decile 10) of Households, 2007-2014 (Constant 2014 Values)
Source: Euromonitor International
Continue reading "Urban Poor to be the Last to Climb out of the Recession" »
In the post-recessionary landscape, generational divides are looming larger. Crudely put, in many minds, the Baby Boomers correlate with the “haves” and the Millennials or Generation Y, to the “have nots”. This may be an over-simplification; Baby Boomers are not all wealthy, with the added complexity that some are spending significant amounts supporting their Millennial offspring. Nevertheless Millennials, the majority of whom have entered the labour force since 2007, are clearly at the forefront of significant change in consumer behaviour, driven in part by their recessionary inheritance.
A lost generation?
In Europe, challenges faced by Millennials are compounded by government austerity policies, which many believe have hurt the young the most. This is borne out by spectacular rates of youth unemployment – more than 55% in Greece in 2014 and 51.2% in Spain. It is not solely a European problem though, the rate of youth unemployment stood at 13.0% in the USA in the same year – more than twice the overall rate of unemployment.
Continue reading "Generational Divides: Millennials, Austerity and Consumption" »
Analyst insight by Damian Shore - Contributing Analyst
It has often been speculated that increased levels of pet ownership among young women are related to the fact that they are starting families later in life. This contention is now backed by a small, but growing, body of scientific research, shedding new light on recent trends in the pet care market.
Family life delayed
Largely as a result of changing social mores, the increased availability of contraception and a long-term increase in the proportion of women in the labour force, the average age of women at first childbirth has been steadily increasing. In Japan, the average age of women at first childbirth rose from 29.7 years to 30.2 years between 2009 and 2014. Women tend to start their families at a younger age in the US, but the gap is narrowing: the average age of women at first childbirth in this country leapt from 25.2 years to 26.8 years over the same period. In most of Western Europe, this figure is now around 30 years.
Continue reading "Pet Parenthood is Not Just a Figure of Speech" »
Analyst Insight by Ronald Tinashe Mapiye - Research Analyst
Customers are generally influenced by a series of issues when making purchasing decisions. This is true across the globe, and as such Sub-Saharan Africa consumer is no different. However, in Sub-Saharan Africa, one finds that some factors that influence consumers’ purchase decisions are unique to this region.
Demographics play an integral role in the decision making of the Sub-Saharan Africa consumer. In a market like Nigeria, there is little racial diversity as the black race makes up the majority of the population. This makes it relatively easy for food manufacturers to target consumers as a common food culture and consumption pattern can be easily identified. There are less ethical issues to address where there isn’t much diversity, although you find that there are also limited opportunities to diversify in a country that is not multi-racial. South Africa, on the other hand, has much more opportunities for retailers to diversify as the country has multiple races. Since people are exposed to many cultures, they are more open minded to trying out different foods and therefore it makes it relatively challenging to enter markets such as food retailing and apparel, as a clear understanding and knowledge of the market is needed.
Continue reading "The Impact of Country Specific Demographic Factors on Consumer Behaviour in Africa" »
With China continuing to slow, the oil price around US$60, and other key commodities down – including tea, gold and copper - some of Sub-Saharan Africa’s largest economies are facing strong headwinds this year.
Real GDP Growth in the 10 Largest Sub-Saharan Economies in 2015
Source: Euromonitor International from national statistics/Eurostat/OECD/UN/IMF
Note: Data are forecast
Continue reading "Sub-Saharan Africa Can Ride Out Commodity Price Losses" »