Six things that have changed about customers

I found an interesting (PowerPoint) presentation about the retail strategy of US retailer Family Dollar. In it they note a few things about consumer behaviour in the current climate. You can download the presentation at retailsmartresults.)

Based on that analysis, and a few additional resources, I have compiled this little list for you.
Doing more things at home

This does not only refer to the ‘cocooning’ indentified by futurist Faith Popcorn, but rather about how consumers are spending their money. In a recent survey , the researchers found in particular that it is affecting dining habits.
Using more coupons and discounts

US-based stats, but at the same time, internet-based coupon sites are spreading their tentacles. For instance, see what Groupon is doing.
Want ‘green’ but don’t want to pay for it

Rather than quote research, let me ask this: When you booked your last flight (online), did you tick the box that allowed you to offset your carbon footprint? Click here to answer the quick poll (just the one question) and I will share the results with you next week.
Combining errands and shopping trips

Family Dollar research.
“Trading down” to less expensive items (anti-consumption mindset)

Last month, the McKinsey Quarterly released a report about changing  consumer behavior.  Of the consumers that they surveyed, 18% traded down in their categories, and the majority of those who traded down did not find any difference between the lower-priced brands and the brands they had traditionally used.  Over 75% of consumers who traded down were going to stay there, very happily.

 Just last week in Inside Retailing, a commentator said there has been a shift in the consumer's psychology of acquisition. "The wild days of abundance and status for status' sake are no longer relevant. Customers are more discerning in both their product choices and with whom they choose to have a relationship."
 Greater reliance on social networks and word-of-mouth for final decision making

Again, if you have not seen Dan Zarella’s presentation on the science of social media, you can download or watch here at retailsmartresults.)

The question is of course; if this is so, then how has that changed how you do business?