Consumer Trends in the Downturn

Two years ago, consumers where prone to spend above their means. Today, they’re more likely to be more conservative with their finances. While most aren’t spending as freely as before, many are learning to be happy with less.

New research suggests that while post-recession consumers may continue to keep a tight hold on their wallets, there are new consumer characteristics emerging that marketers can tap into to drive sales. There are some useful pieces of information for bicycle dealers.

How have consumers changed?

Consumers who recently embraced frugality plan to continue in that vein. Seventy-eight percent believe the recession has changed their spending habits for the better.

People are more conscientious and deliberate when it comes to financial matters than they have been in years. This behavior will not quickly evaporate.

To entice frugal consumers to buy, marketers should to focus on value in their messages. The study found that while 92 percent of respondents are using coupons, those shoppers are typically not willing to sacrifice quality for price.

Buying fewer but higher-quality products was preferred by 73 percent of respondents.

What should bike shops do?

Understanding this balance between using coupons as a price incentive and high-quality products as a value incentive is a winning formula for bike shops in today's economic environment.

Respect the changes in your customers' buying habits and shift your marketing to appeal to their changing needs.

About The Author

Ryan Atkinson

Ryan Atkinson

Ryan is a proven marketing professional who entered the cycling industry in 1994.