The Role Of Technology In A New World
As I am sure many of you will agree, there has not been a more apt time to discuss this topic as the global pandemic has made the impact of technology on all our lives more relevant than ever before.
Never in a million years did I think that a series about the royal family or a Mexican drug cartel would dominate the main topic of conversation between me and my friends, that I would be forced to stare at my own reflection for hours on end during online meetings or that downward dog would replace my morning latte but here we are in 2021…. if I had 3 words to literally sum up the past year, they would have to be Netflix, Zoom and Namaste!
So while the impact that technology has made on our lives over the last year especially has been pretty dramatic, it has actually been a wave that has been rising really gradually for decades now.
The Evolution Of The Internet
Since the birth of the internet in 1983, the online platform has grown exponentially in the last two decades with;
- 5,053 millions of users worldwide at the end of 2020 compared to just
- 1, 018 in 2005.
The Growth Of Digital Devices
We now use devices that we never even conceived imaginable with;
- 60% of people using what we now know as the smartphone to connect to the internet,
- only 16% of people using laptops and portable computers,
- and just 12 % of people using tablets.
The Acceleration Of Digital Channels
Did we ever think that we would be using Google to find out about the latest advancements in orthopedic mattresses for example, (yes that’s what I was bust googling last night) or that we would be using Facebook to look for a local Plumber but these are the tools we use when we want information on buying a product or service with;
- 89% of consumers begin the buying process with search engines such as google or yahoo and
- 75% of consumers say they use social media as part of the buying process
The Inflation Of Digital Necessity
Did we ever imagine that we would be using the internet to buy simple things like our children’s socks, or to deliver a cooked meal…
Well in Britain last year;
- over 50% of online goods purchased included shoes, clothing and accessories
- and over 30% included deliveries for restaurants,fast food or catering.
The Rise Of Video
All this research suggests that buying goods and services online supports the lifestyle of a modern day consumer but what it also suggests is that the modern consumer is now more comfortable and confident in buying online than ever before.
The Impact of Video On The Consumer
This leads me on to one of the biggest impact’s technology has had on our lives as consumers and that is the rising trend of video content!
- Video is now the number 1 source of information for 66% of people
- More than 75% of Video comes from mobile devices
- More video content gets uploaded within 30 days than the major US Television networks have broadcast in 30 years.
The Impact Of Video On Businesses
There is also some huge opportunities for businesses in there with
- 93% of businesses gaining new customers as a direct result of posting branded video content to social media platforms.
How Consumer Behavior Has Impacted Technology
I think while it’s important to recognise that technological advancements have been a driver in our lives as consumers, there’s also been a big aspect of consumer behavior driving technology.
In 2018, some of the top consumer trends included the call out culture online spurning the need for brands to be more accountable to their audiences. Similarly, the rise of adaptive entrepreneurs and millennials seeking alternative ways to earn a living has undoubtedly led to an abundance of new and inspirational online goods and services across the globe.
And most recently in 2021, we have the growth of the stay at home economy which has driven the rise of streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime, and the shift towards e-commence platforms such as Amazon. Similarly the sudden stress of the pandemic on all our lives, unarguably made the ‘minding myself mentality’ more relevant than ever before with an increase of online meditation platforms like the App, Calm as well as other wellbeing programmes and lifestyle accessories.
This brings me to the close of my discussion as I summarise the main impact that technology has made on our lives as consumers.
The Real Impact Of Technology On The Life Of The Consumer
Technology has given us more ways of researching the information we need through the use of social media and video marketing. It has given us more choice of goods and services, more convenient ways of purchasing and more accessibility to those goods and services we desire.
Technology has created the modern-day consumer, an assertive, empowered and savy shopper in all of us. For businesses, there is increasing challenges to adapt to this new consumer, new technology, new trends, new ways of marketing and selling but if they do it effectively, evidence has proved that there are perhaps more opportunities than ever before. While technology has certainly impacted our lives as consumers, our lives continue to impact on technology as the two feed of each other and create a cycle of new innovations and online consumer experiences as we have seen from the new trends which have emerged in the last number of years.
If there is one thing for sure, the impact of technology will keep advancing our consumers habits however we as human beings and the world we live in today will continue to shape the technology of tomorrow.
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