Top 10 global consumer trends for 2017
Faster shopping and the transformation of old age are two of the trends identified by Euromonitor International on its annual report of the trends that will shape the consumer landscape this year.
The “Top 10 Global Consumer Trends for 2017” report noted that 2016 was defined by uncertainty with growth in global consumer expenditure slowing to 2.4% in real terms – the lowest rate of growth since the financial crisis.
“Consumers are now more demanding of products, services and brands than ever before and are using digital tools to articulate and fulfil their needs. They want authenticity in what they buy and expect elements of personalization in mass produced as well as upscale items,” stated Daphne Kasriel-Alexander, consumer trends consultant at Euromonitor International.
Euromonitor’s 2017 top global consumer trends include:
Ageing – A changing narrative: Transforming what it means to be older;
Consumers in training: Giving children more decision-making power;
Extraordinary: Expanding the mass to accommodate needs of a larger consumer base;
Faster shopping: Speeding up business models to provide the rapid convenience consumers demand;
Get real – The allure of authenticity: Exploring the increased desire for “real,” “genuine” and “natural;”
Identity in flux: Consumers looking for their identity in a post-gender world;
Personalize it: Shifting from “having to being” with customized products and experiences;
Post-purchase: Beyond fulfilling to predicting;
Privacy and security: Personal safety and the allure of home; and
Wellness as a status symbol: Looking wellness-ready and the rise of boutique health.
Click here to download the report.
Accenture in tech collaboration with Council of Fashion Designers
The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) and Accenture are collaborating to help shape how the fashion industry integrates technology and consumer insights into its business practices.
Combining the creativity within CFDA’s membership with Accenture’s expertise in customer experience, strategy, insights and technology, the two organizations will create talent-development programs for today’s designers and tomorrow’s retailers.
In addition, Accenture and CFDA will develop a series of thought leadership articles and hypotheses on the future of the fashion customer experience and test these ideas in live pilots with members of CFDA. This will provide CFDA with a new method to deliver value and insights to its members and, using the insight and feedback, help Accenture create solutions that it can share with its clients.
Last year, the CFDA launched Retail Lab with Cadillac to help emerging talent make their foray into the retail world, with Retail Lab’s first physical store at Cadillac House, in New York. The program enables select designers to open a retail installation for three months and learn skills integral to succeed in the industry, under the mentorship of fashion industry experts.
As the first official “innovation partner” of CFDA’s Retail Lab, Accenture will work closely with the Lab’s select group of emerging fashion designers to develop customized retail strategies and equip them with the critical business knowledge and digital skills required to stay competitive in today’s challenging retail market.
“CFDA’s new collaboration with Accenture will provide our design community with an invaluable resource to help navigate retail and business technology,” said Ashley-Brooke Sandall, CFDA’s director of strategic partnerships.
The collaboration will be supported by Fjord, the design and innovation unit of Accenture Interactive, and Accenture Labs, which prototypes and pilots new concepts through applied R&D projects. Plans include inviting fashion designers to participate in Fjord’s design studio in New York and leveraging technologies like artificial intelligence and mixed and virtual reality from Accenture Labs to bring customer engagement to the next level.
Select designers will engage with a design challenge that extends their academic work in a fast-paced design-intensive program. Outcomes range from enhanced research to physical prototypes, with the benefit of collaboration and input from Accenture.
“The CFDA represents the fabric of the fashion industry and has been instrumental in giving emerging talent a series of platforms to gain real-world business and retail experience,” said Jill Standish, senior managing director of retail at Accenture. “Working together with such a prestigious organization, we can help these designers acquire highly sought-after digital skills needed for them to be at the forefront of industry innovation, grow their businesses and drive tangible business results.”
Sears taps AI to sell tires
Sears has a new strategy to help rebuild its brand and drive profitability: artificial intelligence.
Eyeing relationships with its Sears Automotive customers, the embattled retailer is piloting its “Digital Tire Journey,” a web app that relies on IBM Watson to help shoppers buy tires. Unlike typical ecommerce websites that often rely on a drop-down menu of pre-selected tire terms, Sears’ artificial intelligence-based web app delves into the driving and lifestyle preferences of shoppers.
To find the best tire, Sears analyzes the vehicle's make, model and tire size, and how it supports their shoppers’ everyday routines and hobbies. Leveraging IBM’s Natural Language Classifer, a service that analyzes and understands the intent behind text and returns a corresponding classification, Sears can identify the appropriate tires to fit shoppers’ driving preferences within the following categories: Comfort Warrior, Value Seeker, Off-Roader, High Performer, Safety Seeker and Winter Warrior.
When launching the online app, shoppers are asked, “When it comes to tires, what's most important to you?” Based on their reply, the Digital Tire Journey shows what type of driving style they have, and recom-mends tires with consumer ratings to assist drivers in making an informed purchasing decision, the retailer said.
"Our vision is to put our members' lives in drive. We do that by investing in people, products and technology to keep them moving safely on the road of life," said Brian Kaner, president of Sears Auto Centers. "The Digital Tire Journey is an innovative service that helps customers cut through the clutter while integrating digital, mobile and online with in-store shopping."
The solution also offers shoppers the option to buy the tires online, schedule an appointment for installation at the nearest Sears Auto Center or reach a call center agent to ask additional questions and purchase the tires by phone, Sears said.