Trends - Just can’t wait

Want consumers to care about your products in 2016? Make them instantly available, and disarmingly honest.

We all know that technology has become an integral part of our everyday lives. Online shopping, electronic payments and virtual vendors are not exactly new any more. The ability to search for and purchase almost anything instantly, is something that we increasingly take for granted. It frees up time in our busy lives, supposedly giving us time for the ‘things we love’. Traditional online shopping (a term to make us feel old if there ever was one) has not quite satisfied our desires for instant gratification. Now we are being conditioned to believe that once we find that perfect product, we expect it to be with us immediately. With our expectations shaped by our anytime, anywhere access to information, we now want all aspects of our lives to be ‘on-demand’.

The Instant trend has three threads which enable us to move quicker than ever before: instant delivery, instant payment and instant collection of goods. For example, BottlesXO in Shanghai, allows wine drinkers to order their wines and have it delivered within 60 minutes at the correct temperature, ready for instant consumption. And this service is not alone, instant delivery of everything, including wine, is springing up across the globe, raising our expectations of with every new promise of ever quicker services.

Alongside the importance of Instant is the reality of Transparency. 2015 saw high-profile scandals which cost several multinational corporations not only significantly financially, but also cost the wavering trust of an already sceptical consumer base.

Today’s consumers can be more discerning than previous generations – with product reviews, opinion pieces and insider information just a mouse click away, covering up mistakes and putting a spin on the truth is no longer a viable option for businesses. We have the power to purchase by conviction, looking at what is behind a brand. If what we find is openness, honesty and responsibility in all areas of the business, we’ll take that to heart.

Transparency is manifesting in many ways across a broad cross-section of geographies. The Union Square Hospitality Group, led by Danny Meyer in NYC for example, are leading the way in making a difference to tip-driven restaurant industry by eliminating all tipping in their restaurants in favour of factoring a ‘hospitality’ cost into the prices of all dishes. Staff wages will rise accordingly, enabling all workers to earn a fair, stable salary without the need to rely on tips. The initiative was introduced first to the Modern, inside the Museum of Modern Art, with Gramercy Tavern, Union Square Café and 11 other restaurants following.

To find out more, don’t miss our Global Consumer Trends 2016 Report, out now.

Author: Lulie Halstead