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How increased complexity in consumer decisions is impacting business

Authored by Shaleena Kaura, Senior Vice President and Head of All India Qualitative Research Practice at Hansa Research.

The consumer decisions became complex and have an excellent more unbalanced mixture of emotions and rationale counting on the categories the consumers are interacting with. Consumers also are prioritizing and deprioritizing some categories in terms of engagement and share of wallet.

What are a number of the key factors that are influencing choices and impacting businesses?

Increased concentrate on Health and Safety

According to the newest Pan-India survey done by Habit Health and Nutrition, 60 percent people had increased their reliance on nutrition and wellness experts and leaned towards preventive healthcare rather than curative. And 70 percent people said they're going to prioritize eating healthy (even over gyms and fitness centers because of social distancing) to enhance overall health, immunity and lower stress and anxiety levels.

Due to social distancing virtual consultations, e-labs and e-pharmacies became the choice seizing mindshare of individuals hitherto at home with visiting hospitals, collection centers and pharmacies. The increasing concern of Indians, of all ages, about their health and food is borne out by the emergence of the FMHG (Fact Moving Health Goods) segment. Many businesses from pharma, OTC, nutraceuticals/ dietary supplements, functional foods and FMCG are making a intrude on this high growth segment. However, having such a lot of options with confusing technical details exacerbated by the poor taste of some health products is making choices difficult.

Empathy, an overarching need

Consumers became more conscious and sensitive and that they want to rally around causes for the greater good and need brands to try and do the identical. Empathy is yet one more important parameter that brands are being measured on.

For example; Mondelez India demonstrated empathy when it reached intent on 1800+ local retailers, across 260+ pin codes, whose businesses were promoted locally through the most recent Cadbury Celebrations ad. It leveraged technology and AI to make India’s first hyper-personalized ad ending with the message – ‘When all folks support our local stores, all people can have a cheerful Diwali’.


The value of individual expression and ‘be yourself ‘has never been more true than it's now. Consumers want products and services to spotlight their individuality and also reflect their values. The Tanishq Ad with its message on inter faith marriage found resonance with individuals despite the polarizing hastag of ‘Boycott Tanishq.’ Despite the removal of the ad, in keeping with the Google Trends data the explore for Tanishq doubled.


Consumers are now more protective of their privacy despite seeking hyper personal experiences and a way that the brand is connected with them. What they don’t want could be a feeling of intrusion or being stalked. The privacy issue of WhatsApp sharing private chat data with Facebook negatively impacted how the patron saw the brand. It resulted in several people moving to other apps like Signal.

Accelerated shift to Digital Shopping

India’s digital shopping was accelerated vis a vis other countries within the world, albeit from a coffee base. In nine of thirteen major countries surveyed, a minimum of two-thirds of consumers say they need tried new varieties of shopping. all told thirteen countries, 65 percent or more say they shall still do so. Specific to online shopping the survey did show a conspicuous lack of name loyalty among online buyers. A pan India Consumer Connect program in dire straits a significant E- Commerce player by Hansa Qualitative showed similar findings.

The access to numerous e-commerce sites on their fingertips and also the ability to e-browse and compare products at a pace that will be impossible to try and do while physically shopping has the buyer spoilt for choice.

Conscious Consumption

Climate change is becoming a giant consideration and impacting decisions. dissembling and greenwashing by brands won’t pass muster because of the well informed consumer. Amazon has been among the companies in India that has eliminated use of plastics in packages delivered to customers. 65 percent are willing to shop for alternative non-plastic products or packaging rather than plastics and 68 percent are looking to boost the employment of local products considered to be “safe and sustainable”

To sum up, deciding isn't any longer only about how good the ultimate product or service looks, its quality or maybe what quantity it costs. the patron values, now over ever, what's the whole story of a product or service and being aligned thereto within the ways in which matter. Where the brand has come from, whether its journey was ethical and sustainable, whether it promotes local communities, does it highlight one’s values and beliefs etc. are the various considerations. And with the buyer needing to make an informed and conscious choice the complexity in higher cognitive process is certain to increase.

DISCLAIMER: The views expressed are solely of the author and does not necessarily subscribe to it. 


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