Changing consumer behaviour in developed and emerging markets

In a 2013 report by Accenture, (a global consulting and research leader in consumers trends, technology and oust sourcing) a survey of 10,000 consumers worldwide highlighted some interesting disparities between those in developed countries (Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United
States) and those in emerging markets (Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, South Africa and Turkey).

Pace of change in consumer behaviour in those emerging markets is far greater than in developed markets.

Consumers are increasingly “connected” – often online, interacting with companies and other consumers to research and purchase products, share advice, and praise or criticize a business. Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of the consumers surveyed said they use the Internet to research or purchase products or services more than they did three years ago. Consumers are also increasingly using social media as a tool in the purchasing process.

  • Consumers are increasingly “demanding” – seeking products and services customized to meet their specific needs. Approximately two-thirds of consumers surveyed said that it is important to be able to buy what they want when they want it (68 percent) and to be able to customize the product or service to be exactly what they want (63 percent).
  • Consumers are increasingly “conscientious” – seeking sustainable goods and services, they are focused on where and how their products are made and on doing business with companies that make a positive social and/or environmental impact. Half (51 percent) of consumers surveyed said they consider the environmental impact of the product or manufacturer before purchasing a product more often than they did three years ago.

Emerging-market consumers are becoming more sensitive to the wider impacts of consumption and adjusting
their behaviour to be more considerate of others.

In emerging markets, consumers are communal,conscientious, individual and social

In developed-markets consumers—connected, resourceful, conscientious.

Below is a snap shot of consumers profile and associated behaviour.

Although the pace of change in developed markets may be slower than in emerging economies, consumers
in developed countries are not standing still. The role of technology in facilitating connected consumption is burgeoning quickly. Nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of developed-market consumers are using the Internet more to research products and services than they were three years ago.

Consumers in developed markets have become more resourceful, with 27 percent choosing to repair or refurbish more frequently than three years ago, and 25 percent reselling or exchanging goods more often.

Localism is acute: 35 percent of developed-market consumers buy locally sourced or locally made products
more often than three years ago.


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