Meet the 2030 Consumer

2030 will be an important year for a couple of reasons. For starters, every boomer in the U.S. will be over 65 years of age, meaning that 20% of our entire population will have reached retirement age. It will also mean that millennials will be approaching 50 years of age. They and Generation Z will make up most of our workforce. These facts, along with the findings of a study into how the customer experience will be evolving by 2030 give a hint as to how brands might begin preparing to meet these upcoming challenges.

The Study

Analytics software firm SAS partnered with Futurum Research in May 2019 to survey more than 4,000 consumers, tech professionals, and marketers. They discovered five key areas of technology they felt would drive the evolution of customer experience by 2030. Here’s the five.

Mobile

Researchers discovered that 33% of those polled were already using three or more mobile phones in their households and that 41% anticipate more by 2025. In fact, many said they expect to see further increases by 2030. These findings validate and strengthen studies during the pandemic that an increasing number of consumers depend on digital devices. What this means for brands is that they must adopt mobile-first marketing strategies and possibly consider mobile-only as well.

Wearable Devices

44% of respondents reported having at least one wearable device like a fitness tracker or smartwatch in their household. What’s more? More than 50% said they anticipate using wearable technology to start or increase by 2025 while 78% said they expect to control other devices with their wearables.

These findings are invaluable because brands can capture more data and provide real-time feedback and information to consumers. Fitbit has already launched a voluntary study of its wearers to see if their device can detect early stages of infectious diseases and atrial fibrillation. Wearable devices provide brands an opportunity to not only help consumers complete tasks but another way to engage with them in positive ways.

Smart Assistants

An overwhelming number of consumers expect to utilize smart assistants to make online purchases or control smart homes by 2030 – a whopping 80%. Of those polled, 35% of households said they already employ two or more smart assistants, while 50% said they expect to see the number increase through 2030. Like wearable devices, brands have the opportunity to gather and analyze data that can help generate better-personalized consumer experiences.

App Tech

According to the study, about a third of consumers already use three or more financial apps regularly, and 45% expect their usage to increase in the next five years. Industries in this area have an excellent opportunity to expand their market but need to work hard in establishing digital trust between them and their customers.

AR and VR

Augmented and virtual reality may be the next wave of digital consumer popularity. While this has yet to happen, 78% of those surveyed said they anticipate using AR or VR by 2030. Another 56% expect to participate in vacation and entertainment events through one of the devices by 2025.

AR has already made inroads and demonstrated its popularity on mobile devices with such things as “see” directions. These allow consumers to try on clothing and even eyeglasses without leaving their homes via the camera on their phones. They can see how furniture or another product might look when placed in one of their rooms, which is a great opportunity to reach consumers who may be unable or unwilling to venture out. What a novel way to generate customer interest while promoting compassion.

In case it’s been forgotten, the millennials and Generation Z mentioned earlier also depend more on digital technology than older generations. Get ready for 2030!