Half of the UK population (49%) say health and wellbeing is the most important factor when making buying decisions, according to new research conducted by Product of the Year, the UK’s biggest survey of product innovation.
Conducted by leading data and insights company Kantar, 10,000 British consumers were asked to identify factors that would encourage them to buy a product. Two-thirds (61%) cited a well-known or reputable brand as a determining factor and over a third (33%) said product innovation was key to their purchasing decisions. Other important factors included: ethical sourcing (31%), products recommended by friends and family (29%) and eco-friendly packaging (25%).
Consumers are seeking trust and familiarity more than ever after a difficult year. It’s a mood reflected in the research, with the majority of consumers opting for brands and products that have always served them well. The appetite for health and wellness products among those surveyed reflects a growing concern for mental and physical health among Brits who are still grappling with the effects of the pandemic. We’ve also seen the continued rise of alternative diets with veganism being more popular than ever.
2019 v 2020: how has the consumer landscape changed?
In 2019, Product of the Year carried out the same research exploring what motivates people to buy the products they do. Comparing the 2020 research with the figures from 2019, there’s a clear shift in buying behaviour. Pre-Covid, value for money was overwhelmingly the most important determining factor, with four-fifths (78%) citing this as the key reason they buy products while health and wellbeing was far less of a priority with only a third opting for healthy products. As we fast forward to the 2020 results, we can see that in spite of the wide-reaching financial impact of the pandemic, consumers are spending more time and effort to get in the best shape they can with health and wellbeing products high on their agenda.
“After 17 years of tracking consumer habits, we’ve seen trends arise, shifts in shopping habits and changes in attitudes,” says Helga Slater, MD, Product of the Year. “Every year, only the most innovative products win the approval of the voting public and it’s often the small, incremental changes that make the biggest impact on our lives. These products help make life that bit simpler allowing us to deal with life’s hurdles.”
Other findings revealed by the 2020 research included: brands that supports good causes (24%), brands they have an emotional connection with and eye-catching packaging (both 22%). And while we may live in a celebrity-driven world, the research reveals that only 5% would buy a product based on influencer endorsement.
Breakdown of the 2020 research findings:
The most important factors to consumers when buying a product:
- A well-known, reputable brand (61%);
- Whether it will have a positive impact on my health/wellbeing (49%);
- How innovative a brand/product is? (33%);
- Ethical sourcing (ie Fairtrade) (31%);
- Recommended by friends/family (29%);
- Uses eco-friendly packaging (25%);
- The brand supports good causes (24%);
- A brand that you have an emotional connection with (22%);
- Eye-catching packaging (22%);
- Is endorsed by a celebrity/influencer (5%).