The latest Insight Report from Experian
has found that the recession has caused a huge section of the UK population to radically rethink how, when and with whom they spend their money.
According to the report's findings, 'bounce-back consumers' will maintain a 'more for less' mindset but this will not simply translate as 'cheap'. Instead, they will think twice about buying the cheapest item they can find and rather apply specific selection criteria to shop around for the best value, on everything from shampoo to washing machines.
These 'maximizing behaviours', where consumers demand the best of everything across the price/service/quality/value spectrum, are already beginning to emerge.
Experian's research highlights that more than a quarter (27%) of UK consumers are more likely to have shopped around for the best deal over the last six months, and 25% now take more time over choosing products.
In addition, more than 80% of consumers claim to be increasingly aware of the price of goods and services, and this emphasis on value is not likely to change even as the economy improves.
Even among historically brand-loyal consumer groups, Experian says increasingly volatile and promiscuous behaviour is taking place. More than half of consumers have moved to using a different shop in the last year because of poor or indifferent service, and up to 63% claim to be less loyal to companies now than they were previously.
This decrease in loyalty is also linked into an evaporation of trust, says Experian, with UK consumers more suspicious of companies and big business than ever before — 40% now say they believe companies are not fair to consumers.
Readers can download the full report free of charge from Experian's website