March 5, 2013

Rain In The 2013 Consumer Spending Forecast

consumer spending small businessData coming out of the Commerce Department shows something interesting – consumers are saving more than ever before.  That sounds, on the surface, like great news but it is something that should make anyone who makes and sells a product a little bit nervous.

The Robin Report had a great article, titled Nervous Consumers Go To The Mattress, about this trend of increased consumer savings.  While I’ll encourage you to read the entire article (it’s really not long), in a nutshell the author says that the reason consumers are saving more is because they have a pessimistic outlook on the economic future.  And by saving that means they are spending less.

This may be in contrast to the Specialty Food Trade report which indicated that spending for gourmet and specialty food products was up last year (I believe I used the word ‘thriving’) but keep in mind that food is just one very small line item in the overall consumer budget.

So will decreased consumer confidence in the overall economy slow down spending on specialty food items?  Hopefully not but this quote from the Robin Report sums it up nicely.

Those marketers who create compelling shopping experiences, and who offer unique and innovative products and services, and at good value, stand the best chance of gaining market share in the current no-growth, low-spend environment.

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