Confirming that consumers have permanently reprioritized everything from how they work to how they spend, Accenture’s recent consumer survey found that despite financial concerns, consumers are not willing to reduce budgets for health and well-being expenses.
The survey, which polled more than 11,000 consumers across 16 countries, was the latest in a series of consumer surveys that Accenture has conducted throughout the pandemic to test the pulse of consumer outlook and sentiments.
“Retailers and brands can manage the impact of the evolving consumer trade-offs by staying close to consumer trends and pivoting quickly to respond to them,” said Jill Standish, a senior managing director at Accenture. “While there’s an undeniable headwind, retailers have always been good at innovating to solve problems, and innovation will become increasingly important to create new levels of value, drive down costs, and do the right thing for society and the planet. It calls for extraordinary levels of collaboration, commitment and consumer engagement — not to mention technology and business innovation that is grounded in insight from reliable data sources.”
Overall, the research findings showed that even as uncertainty looms over personal finances — 66 percent of respondents said they feel financially squeezed — consumers consider health and fitness to be an “essential” alongside groceries and household cleaning products. In fact, 80 percent shared they intend to maintain or even increase spending on areas related to health and fitness in the next year. These expenses include exercise classes or vitamins and supplements.
“Despite hard times, it is clear that people have redefined health and well-being to be an essential good and plan to maintain or increase their spend in this area this year, regardless of income levels,” said Oliver Wright, senior managing director at Accenture. “With the health and wellness market expected to increase to more than $1 trillion in spend globally by 2025, consumer-facing companies must tap into cross-industry expertise and scientific and technological breakthroughs while also considering consumers’ changing priorities when designing new offerings.”
Notably, Accenture also found that respondents are taking a more holistic view of wellness, where it is being reframed as more of a consumer staple. As such, 42 percent of respondents said they are increasing their amount of physical activity while 33 percent also said that they are putting more focus into self-care, including “indulging in a bath or beauty treatment,” than they were a year ago.
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