Towards 2022: What is Changing in the Consumer?

“Me, My Life and My Wallet”

gündüzleri gri beton kaldırımda duran beyaz önlüklü ve mavi kot kotlu kadınTechnology is advancing at a disruptive pace, fundamentally changing shopping habits.

Today, where the most valuable resource is information, consumers can quickly get information, access the product or service they want, and change the preferences of other consumers with their sharing.

Consumers attach importance to trust, reality, and social values ​​when making decisions, and these points are gathered under the title of “my motivation.” The dimension of “my attention” is determined as the struggle of companies to attract the consumer’s attention in the face of the large volume of content available to the customer.

Undoubtedly, the pandemic period has begun to change many things in our lives, from economy to politics, from education to consumption. We are in a period where many things that were not our habit in the past are or will be our new regular. Of course, the change in our thoughts and behaviors will also affect our consumption habits. Therefore, understanding the new normal and correctly interpreting the effects on consumption psychology are the most significant needs of brands these days. At this point, two critical questions on everyone’s mind are: How does the pandemic affect consumer thinking? How should brands change in this process?

It is necessary to understand the irrational, emotional, and subconscious processes that trigger behavior and shape our perceptions rather than rationality to understand changing consumer behavior. For example, we know that the brain’s fast–thinking autopilot system makes more than 95 percent of the decisions we make during the day. On the other hand, our limbic system, responsible for our vital functions and emotions, plays a crucial role in making these decisions.

In addition, the discourses published in the media and circulating can also affect the psychology of consumers. We come across two critical cognitive concepts: Fear of missing out and the bandwagon effect (follow the crowd). For example, a consumer who thinks that they can go to the market as needed may exhibit the behavior we call panic buying when he sees that the majority of them go to the market and buy many things, thinking “I’m missing something,” “I need to buy something and stock up.”

Social responsibility work before Covid–19 was a factor that created emotional bonds and loyalty between brands and consumers. Social responsibility awareness will now be even more critical for consumers and brands. Especially in this case, how much brands care about public health and what kind of work they do to create benefits will affect the consumer’s brand preference.

For example, things like the production of masks by brands, the supply of free cologne, or the car rental companies offering accessible vehicles to healthcare professionals have increased the value of brands in the eyes of consumers.

E–commerce Leverage: On the other hand, we are experiencing essential developments on the digital transformation side. Digitization was a part of our lives before the coronavirus. However, the digitalization of consumption and the importance of e–commerce gained exponential momentum. In addition, we see that certain age groups who do not have e–commerce habits tend to e-commerce for security reasons. These digital consumption behaviors will become habits throughout the pandemic, which will continue after the pandemic.

Digital Transformation: Of course, digitalization has begun to show its effect not only in e–commerce but also in fields such as education and health. Currently, mobile health applications and IoT tools developed to find solutions to the pandemic are part of this digitalization. There is also reform in the field of education. Online education is rising, and people will realize that teaching can also be effective online. This may cause radical changes in education models after the pandemic.

We are Paying System: We can foresee that the global spread of the epidemic will create some changes in the financial systems. The importance of social distance and hygiene will continue to be effective for this period and after this period. Among the preliminary estimates, contactless payment options will be preferred to prevent contact, and cash usage will decrease by using online channels.

We see that financial technologies are also preferred to maintain social distance in the global epidemic. Rather than taking the risk of catching a virus by going to the market, the opportunity to meet the needs quickly through mobile channels, and even by placing orders with online payment to the addresses of those who are riskier to leave the house (without any extra contact by leaving the products at the door), seems to lead to significant changes in behavioral economics.