How does the health crisis encourage Europeans to adapt their consumption habits? The Cetelem Observatory wanted to find out about it and this fall launched an additional version of its barometer pending its annual publication scheduled for February 2021.
If the study, conducted with Harris Interactive in nine countries, took place at the beginning of September, it nonetheless draws up major trends that the re-containment, which extends over the Old Continent, will further accentuate.
Savings on the rise
Not surprisingly, morale is slowing down. Compared to the end of 2019, it is down sharply when Europeans are asked about the situation in their country, in particular in the places most affected by the health crisis such as Belgium, France, Spain or the United Kingdom. United. On the other hand, they are much more optimistic about their personal situations. A particularly marked phenomenon in France.
On the financial side, the sums saved during the first confinement were not really spent. ” Savings intentions are on the rise, particularly in France. And we can think that with the new confinement, the one that was forced will become a precautionary savings for the middle classes “, Foresees Flavien Neuvy, director of the Cetelem Observatory. He also believes that Christmas will not be the occasion for catch-up shopping.
Among the projected expenses, few sectors are doing well. Travel and leisure are, one would have suspected, the most at half mast. Even household appliances and furniture saw their purchasing intentions decline. Only paid subscriptions to a video streaming platform, game consoles or motorcycles and scooters attract a little more than in 2019.
Since March, the bike is the star product in the minds of consumers. No less than 21% of Europeans surveyed plan to buy one in the next twelve months! One in five people are also interested in the faster Internet subscription. “ People have put themselves in a crisis management mode », Notes Fabien Neuvy.
On the purchasing power side, the dominant feeling in the nine countries studied is stagnation or decline. Food is the item of expenditure which, in the eyes of the public, has particularly increased.
Another even more emerging trend in the time of Covid: the consumption of local products, considered a priority by 43% of Europeans. ” She ticks all the boxes. Economic patriotism is part of the debate. The crisis strengthens the movement », Observes the director of the Cetelem Observatory.
Local purchasing is first perceived as an act in favor of the environment but also, to a lesser extent, as a duty. According to the general public, it allows jobs to be kept in the country or created. But it is also largely used to make sure to know the origin and the traceability of its purchases (an even more fundamental dimension in France) and to consume quality products.
Adapt to digital
As for the use of digital technology, 8 out of 10 Europeans – and a little more than 7 out of 10 French people – consider that its increased role in daily practices is a good thing. Overall, they don’t find it too difficult to adjust to the rise in online shopping. While for relationships with loved ones, they find it much more difficult to cope with the decrease in contact.