As a business owner, understanding how consumers react and purchase is a core goal for marketing and branding. However, today’s consumers are not the same group of buyers that they were a decade or even a couple of years ago. They have new interests, new habits, and different ways of making purchase decisions. Take a look at the latest habits the modern consumer has adopted and see how well your marketing matches up – and remember, FranchiseExpo.com has advice on marketing and much more when it comes to picking a franchise.
1. More Age-Disparate Buying: Markets, especially technology and information markets, can move fast. This is leading to a market situation where age demographics play a very important role. There’s a reason so many people talk about millenials vs. baby boomers vs. sensiors and so on – they each have very, very different buying habits and ways of making purchasing decisions. Millenials and baby boomers remain the key target markets, but these people groups are growing more different all the time in their needs or habits, so targeted marketing is becoming even more important.
2. More Flexible Purchasing Times: Brick-and-mortar stores have set store hours, but today’s modern consumer is used to buying products when they want to – and that often means in the evening or late at night when they have time to shop online. Consumers are now used to buying at these times, or at least learning about deals and making purchasing decisions during off hours. As a result, companies that want to appeal new consumers need to offer options to buy throughout the day, even when the store is closed. This is important for selling business services too, making online registration and phone answering services an important part of marketing strategies.
3. Mobile Decision Making: Mobile purchasing is bigger than ever before, and the trend is only growing thanks to the ubiquity of smartphones, not only among millenials but also through all age groups. It’s no surprise that the prevalence of on-the-go shopping has risen as consumers can now make snap decisions and buy right from their phones. In response, many brands have created apps and mobile optimized sites to make buying easier. Keep in mind that even if consumers don’t purchase from their phones, they still often use mobile devices in the decision making process, comparing prices and searching for more information.
4. Multichannel Shopping: Modern consumers can originate almost anywhere. They may read a social media post, follow an online ad, open an email newsletter, drive by a billboard, get suggestions from their friends, and much more. Buyers are increasingly likely to consult some or all of the channels available to them when making a purchase decision. In other words, they are getting information from a lot of different sources before making up their minds.
5. Collaborative Buying: Collaborative buying has gone through several different cycles, but appears to be here for the long-term in whatever form it takes. Collaborative buying occurs when consumers join together to buy a particular item or service, when and how they want. Prices vary based on the number of consumers and what they are willing to buy. From Uber to crowdfunding sites, collaborative buying is a whole new model quickly gaining a major place.
6. Lifestyle Shopping: Lifestyle shopping has grown more possible than ever before with the rise of many niche markets. Whether consumers are buying green products, eating vegan food, choosing handcrafted products, or picking more local stores, the options have never been more abundant. The result is a consumer that makes shopping decisions based on their lifestyle, not vice-versa.