The coronavirus pandemic has changed our lives and consequently our spending habits. Here are three of the biggest consumer buying trends for 2021.
What are consumers spending money on?
- Home gyms
Due to closure of gyms and sports facilities over the winter lockdown, many people are buying home gym equipment and dedicating space to home gyms. The coronavirus pandemic has drawn attention to the need to stay physically fit. After all, staying active is proven to boost mental wellbeing.
- Home offices
Working from home is now the norm, but before the pandemic, most people didn’t need a home office. Beyond Covid, many companies will continue to offer a hybrid model, with people working from home some of the time for the foreseeable future. For long-term WFH, a purpose-built workspace increases comfort and productivity.
- Large-scale home improvement
Being stuck at home for months on end has likely brought a few things to your attention – for example, how efficient is your heating system? We’re not used to having to heat our homes for the bulk of each day. After all, many of us worked in an office or workplace that would take care of this for us.
Similarly, we are not used to our homes having to meet so many needs (for all occupants) simultaneously – home office, playroom, gym, bar, classroom etc. This change has forced people to reassess their use of space and we’re seeing a shift away from the open-plan living trend of the last couple of decades in favour of a new trend – zoning.
Outdoor space is a priority for consumers who have returned to gardening as a lockdown hobby, or have transformed gardens to provide a much-needed space for relaxation, adding luxuries like hot tubs and tiki bars.
Shopping online vs in-store
It’s not just what we buy that has changed but also how we shop. Ecommerce was already growing steadily, but shop closures, social-distancing and mask-wearing accelerated the shift to online shopping. In the digital, always-on culture, we’re used to browsing and shopping on smartphones 24/7.
Increasing demand for consumer finance
The last year has changed what we buy, how we shop… and also how we pay. The pandemic has affected people’s finances to varying degrees – the public has dealt with furloughs, panic buying, job insecurity and economic uncertainty. This, in conjunction with changing perceptions of finance, means a higher percentage of consumers are opting for a ‘monthly budgeting’ approach over traditional savings, using finance to purchase goods.
72% (of consumers) would be more likely to buy a high-value item if 0% finance was offered on monthly repayments – according to a survey by Barclays.
With this in mind, offering credit to consumers can be an effective way to increase sales. It’s essential to keep up with consumer trends like the increasing demand for flexible payment options to stay ahead of your competitors and remain relevant.Find out if consumer finance is right for your business here.