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Consumers increasingly report the growing importance of time and experience versus possessions. Along those lines, the increased importance of time (and its perceived scarcity in daily life) has supported a concomitant lift in the consumer desire to fund endeavours that preserve it.

As a reaction to modern life, consumers value time as a top priority

Source: Euromonitor International

To ease daily pressures, consumers are on a quest for simplification

It is interesting to note that even the desire for exploration (e.g. “try new products and services”) falls below that of simplification. It is as if the respondents acknowledged a sense of trade-off; that streamlining is necessary to allow for meaningful discovery. So, what does simplification entail? It seems to stem not from a desire to do less. Rather, it appears to be grounded in longing to do more with less. And “less” has to do with the commitment level of the individual. Attractive methods of simplification leverage outsourcing to shift undesired activities away from the individual, leaving bandwidth for meaningful actions. The successful output of simplification is more time. Nowadays, consumers are willing to buy time, especially as time is increasingly viewed as the new status.

Time is the new status: the premiumisation of the hourglass

Perhaps buried in the wake of the Great Recession is the idea that more time equals more status. Nowadays, experience is its own currency, and one that often exceeds the value of purchased products. Ample quantities of time allow for greater experience, which may or may not ultimately live on forever on social media. As discussed, the stripping away of a time commitment involved with a product or service is highly desired. Yet the value of pursuing strategies that give back time offers benefits to companies and brands far beyond just meeting consumer demand. Addressing a key concern of today’s consumers by matching acknowledgement of this reality with a solution elevates a product or service in consumers’ mindset and affords a premium shine.

Transactional: relieving pain points go a long way

People want the convenience of not having to leave their homes, and are willing to pay for it. Furthermore, they are ordering from a wider range of devices and platforms. This expansion in the types of ordering will increase as IoT becomes a greater part of people’s lives. Even so, issues of privacy and security will remain obstacles to companies pushing the boundaries. In the future, restaurants and retailers will have to appease the consumer who is always on the go at places other than their homes, in shorter time frames and provide a wider variety of products. Currently, Amazon Prime will deliver wine in an hour in selected US cities. KFC allows its Chinese customers traveling by train to order on their mobile phones and have food ready at predetermined stops on their route. In Dublin, customers can have cocktails delivered to their homes.

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