October 29, 2021

New Shopper Report: Consumer Expectations Are Changing

By Matthew Tilley
Categories

People change. And that’s proven to be even truer during a global pandemic.

The 2021 CPG Shopper Report from Vericast sheds insight into those changes and how brands should meet buyers’ new expectations.

Here are just a few things we learned about people’s newest habits and consumer mindsets from our recent survey.

Consumers know they are more than a number

More than half (51%) report fading loyalty to food brands in the face of rising prices. Yet, this seems to be a trend as many say they’re less loyal to specific brands in general.

People have options, so they expect brands to treat them like people — not just sales numbers. In response, brands should approach customers with this reality in mind. For example, they should communicate responsibly and offer empathetic support to show customers are more than a dollar sign. Also, offering special deals will go a long way to making customers feel valued, whether shopping in-store or online.

Consumers want to be at home

If people learned one thing during the pandemic, it was that they enjoyed being home more. A whopping 58% of respondents indicated they enjoyed staying at home more, even as businesses were reopening. This has resulted in eating out less and cooking at-home meals more frequently.

Brands may be able to take advantage of this by offering products or services that help support the customer’s newfound love for staying in. While some people are itching to get back to normal life, others find “homebody” has become their new norm.

Consumers demand convenience 

For years now, you’ve probably heard “content is king.” But we see the real king is convenience — in everything. According to respondents:

  • 77% find it easier to read about health and beauty products online.
  • Only 9% reduced their online shopping when the stores reopened.
  • When shopping for groceries, 49% want their experience to be quick and convenient.

Consumers are segmenting along generational lines

According to our report, there are significant differences between generations. Understanding your target audience will impact how you approach your marketing. For example:

Gen Z (born 1997–2003) consumers like to pamper themselves, often searching for a “treat” and are heavily influenced by social media.

Millennials (1981–1996) are currently into their homes and living a more natural life and looking for brands that live up to their values.

Baby Boomers (1946–1964) are all about deal shopping and saving money — they will shop generic brands or look for coupons to save money.

How brands can ride the waves of change

Adapting has been key for brands since the start of the pandemic in 2020. First, brands had to adjust to a locked-down world, and now they must continue to roll with the punches. Not only are regulations and supply chain demands changing, but buyer expectations are also shifting. Understanding these changes will help brands adapt accordingly.

Check out the 2021 CPG Shopper Report to learn more about how your shoppers have changed.

Matthew Tilley is senior director of content marketing for Vericast and leads content marketing for the company. He has more than 20 years of experience in digital advertising and consumer promotions to develop, communicate, and distribute ideas to make modern marketers more effective. 

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