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The retail categories excelling at personalization are…

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Consumers — especially Millennials — increasingly favor personalized products and experiences.

The top five retail categories that excel at offering personalized offerings are apparel and footwear, food and beverages, technology products, vacation and travel experiences, and household goods, according to “Made to Order: An analysis of U.S. consumers perceptions towards personalization,” a report from YouGov.

According to the data, 29% of American customers have personalized apparel or footwear, or food and beverages, respectively; 27% have customized technology products; 25% have created personalized travel and vacation and travel experiences, and 22% have customized household goods.

Interest in personalization is so high that the process is expected to have staying power in the current economy. One in 10 Americans (10%) consider personalization as a top interest, and overall, nearly one in three (30%) express some interest in the offering.

Millennials (40%) are most attracted to personalized merchandise and experiences. Thirty one percent of these shoppers are highly educated, and 31% posses $1,000 or more of monthly disposable income.

Part of the appeal of personalization is its ability to turn a product into a gift, allowing it to be both unique and special. This may be why 8% of Americans said they have personalized a product for someone else. These “gifters” make up 28% of personalizers in the U.S., and 52% of this group said they are willing to pay for premium personalization.

“The personalization economy will continue to grow and shape what consumers expect from products and services. Whether a brand already offers personalization or is still testing the waters, looking to what makes the consumer tick is the key, the study reported. “From an opportunity perspective, brands can get closer to their customers by using personalization as a transformative tool, one that turns a product into a shared experience using a brand’s resources and consumer’s sense of identity.”

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