Consumer behavior changes drastically during a recession; at the center of this change is uncertainty. It is essential for your business to recognize this shift in consumer priorities and to pivot your solutions in a way that helps simplify decision making. Consumers become more risk-averse, willingness-to-pay falls and, with it, perceived values shift to prioritize the fundamental aspects of products and services.
The fundamental markers of simplicity:
- Trust: Build trust with your customers while they need it most.
- Value: Find ways to add value for your customers and, in turn, your brand.
- Choice: Simplify the choices your customers have to make and avoid instigating decision paralysis
- Service: Focus on providing great customer service and become known for it.
- Communication: It is better to over-communicate and be transparent.
The best move you can make is to be proactive in your understanding of people’s uncertainty..
It’s important to remember that this goes for your employees as well, as they are consumers in their own right. The best move you can make is to be proactive in your understanding of people’s uncertainty and to shift services toward providing value to customers and employees. We have seen some great examples of this. In the restaurant industry, for example, some restaurants have taken it upon themselves to shift services from fine dining to drive-up family meal prep. Addressing shifts in consumer dining behavior while finding a way to provide essential services to an expanded market and further support employees.
My Advice: Reach out to your customers and employees, let them know where things lay for you and be proactive in finding ways for your business to add value.