Time is increasingly a crucial commodity for today’s consumer – and a luxury in today’s connected world. As a result, time is something that more and more people are willing to buy. More of us are prioritising time to relax, to spend with family and friends, or to experience new things, over and above buying more goods (that we don’t really need or even have space for) or spending time on chores and everyday tasks.
Convenience is central to buying time
Saving time is impacting on retailing in a big way. It drives the growth of both local and online shopping. It’s a major factor in the trend for convenience, a trend which withstood the recession. Convenience impacts across sectors, being a factor in the sales of ready meals, multi-functional appliances and beauty products.
- The Bimby, aka Thermomix, combines 12 appliances in one with functions that include weighing, mixing, chopping, blending, steaming and cooking. Manufactured by Vorwerk, It is marketed as a money and time-saver. With the 3rd longest working hours in the eurozone, Portuguese consumers have embraced this time-saving appliance costing around the same as the average monthly disposable income of €1,000.
Technology can supply the luxury of time
Convenience is king for connected consumers at home, work and play and technology can play a central role in making our lives easier.
- The Apple watch is at the heart of the trend for “convenience tech”. Time and timing are increasingly crucial and the smart watch enables consumers to access goods and services when they need them. Globally, US$12.5 billion was spent on wearables in 2015. More than 1-in-2 dollars of which, was spent in the USA.
The “C” word should be at the heart of business
The consumer goods sector should embrace this trend by focusing on convenience in each and every aspect of the consumer experience. The key question is: How can the business make it easier for consumers to choose, purchase, use and re-use their products and services?