Europe : Evolving consumer usage patterns in the telecom sector (McKinsey study)

You may say that this study focuses specifically on the telecom sector and therefore doesn’t really concern you (unless you work in that industry).

But in truth, consumer habits in this sector indicate how things will evolve for many other areas of activity.

At a time when mobile operator revenues are in freefall despite healthy sales (if you follow the news, you can’t possibly have missed this), this study may identify new margins of opportunity, which in fact it does.

In the telecom sector, it seems pretty logical that sales via digital platforms should be quickly increasing (+33% per year for the past 5 years) and will soon account for 30 to 40% of the market, according to McKinsey.

Not only do 60% claim to search online when considering a purchase in this area, but an increasing number of these purchases are made from a smartphone (although this is less the case in France than in Holland).

For the time being, there are still variations in the socio-cultural background and the usage patterns of those who purchase phones online. This consumer is on the average older, “richer”, a big consumer of digital media and of applications (61% vs 37% on the average).

McKinsey emphasizes that online consumers are often seen as bounty hunters, when in reality they are the ones with the greatest buying power and the highest levels of usage…

This misconception is probably largely due to the general apprehension concerning digital commerce and its “low-cost” image.

These consumers, as a result, are looking for additional services and unique products.

But even in the group of smartphone owners, there are still major variations. For example, iPhone owners spend on the average 33% more per month than those on Android (although I suspect that will soon equal out).

There is considerable diversity in the way people use apps, which would suggest that operators should perhaps tailor their offers to the type of telephone owned by the consumer.

In fact, if we focus on multi-screen consumers, 54% say they would be willing to pay more for services that would allow them to manage their multiple devices.

Similarly, 50% of video console owners claim that access to advanced TV services are a key factor when choosing their provider/package, whereas 37% feel that access to social networks is important.

According to the study, this pushes providers to propose varied packages tailored to specific use.

This might make choosing one’s package more complicated, but for a certain category of consumers, it’s worth looking into. McKinsey goes even further by explaining that this evolution is critical because the market is increasingly dependent on data consumption.

gregfromparisAuteur: Grégory Pouy
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