Insight

Insight: WGSN releases their flagship Asia Shopper Forecast 2022

SINGAPORE – WGSN, the global authority on consumer trends has published its flagship report “Asia Shopper Forecast 2022”, calling out the key Asia shopper trends and analysing consumer profiles that will impact consumer decision making in 2022 and beyond. This definitive annual report helps brands, businesses, and marketers to innovate with purpose and create meaningful products and experiences catered to the consumers of tomorrow.

“Asia-Pacific has experienced an unprecedented technological transformation over the past decade, and consumers are quick to adopt new digital technologies – a pace that has been accelerated by the global pandemic and the uptake of digital solutions. This also offers a promising future for the region’s digital economy and growing creator class, which is informing a new wave of Asian culture which will play a key role in propelling future growth opportunities in APAC. While Asian shoppers will continue to shape the future of retail as they actively embrace digital payments and omnichannel retail, brands must engage authentically with and fuel the creativity of Asia-Pacific youth as they try new things and take inspiration from different styles and genres,” said Athena Chen, Senior Strategist of APAC, WGSN.

Athena Chen, Senior Strategist of APAC, WGSN

With the consumption of digital services becoming integral to everyday life, consumers are placing greater value on satisfaction when it comes to deciding how much they spend, and which brand they spend on. A sense of optimism is also surfacing as consumers are aligning purchases with their values while seeking to deepen their connections with local culture. It is now essential for businesses to strengthen local ties via both online and offline presences while offering personalised products and services to support creativity and cater to the emerging group of younger Asian shoppers.

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The key Asia shopper profiles to watch for 2022 and beyond are:

  • Digital streamliners – APAC‘s digital shoppers who may have begun their online journeys due to necessity are committed to digital-first lifestyles amid the hyper-connected landscape of the regional market. This shift is driving new expectations around frictionless commerce, anywhere and anytime.
  • Social explorers – These shoppers are looking for hyper-personal and interactive brand experiences online, and purchase decisions are driven by new trends, peer groups, and micro-influencers.
  • Ultra-value seekers – While 2021’s Affordability-Seekers recognised the need to plan for unexpected downturns, the prolonged impact of the pandemic is driving shoppers to search for value whenever possible.
  • The self-rewarders – This optimistic cohort is adopting savvy digital shopping habits to afford premium purchases and treat themselves after years of uncertainty.
  • Joyful escapists – A growing number of APAC shoppers are looking to escape from daily pressures and turning to the alternative realities of anime, which is driving IRL influence for novel products and experiences.
  • The creative class – The recent boom in craft and DIY has paved the way for the experience-focused consumer who is looking for creative engagement, artisanal connections, and values unique IRL experiences.
  • Changemakers – A growing cohort of younger shoppers in Asia are socially conscious, well-informed with more progressive values, and strive for the greater good. They are expecting retailers to combine purpose and profit in engaging and creative ways.
  • Luxury reflectors – Wealthier shoppers in the region are embracing introspection and moments of pause, and are expecting brands to act as value creators and support culturally relevant production.

WGSN’s reports are developed using its proprietary methodology that allows WGSN to identify the signals of change and evaluate, verify and forecast trends. The group works with over 250 industry experts globally to map influencers, disruptors, and changemakers to deliver clear and specific action points. WGSN also looks into culture and creativity, specifically in arts and cultural advances that would potentially impact product design and consumer preference.

Predicting a shift in focus on frictionless commerce and further pursuit of tech-enabled lifestyles while still deepening their connection with local culture, WGSN’s Asia Shopper Forecast 2022 reveals what the future of Asian consumers will look like, today.

According to the latest e-Conomy SEA report by Google, Temasek, and Bain & Company, the internet economy of the region is projected to reach a $1 trillion gross merchandise value (GMV) by 2030. As the world recovers from the pandemic, the region is set for steady economic growth, with the Asian Development Bank forecasting growth of 5.3 percent in 2022. Euromonitor also projects Asia’s retail industry to post a robust growth rate this year.

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