From a global perspective, conditions and prospects for the remainder of the year appear largely positive. In Q1, confidence grew across Western Europe, economic recovery in Latin America looks promising in key markets, FMCG sales in North America performed well, and growing disposable incomes across Asia-Pacific are having an effect beyond the immediate region.
2017 was a good year for global consumers, with consumer confidence ending the year at a near-record level. Notably, 51 markets finished the year with higher confidence than they did in 2016, and the gains were bigger than 2 points in 46 markets.
In the face of rapidly evolving business and economic landscapes around the world, the importance of organizational intelligence and foresight thinking as a tool to unearth early indicators of change and unlock growth has never been greater.
Global FMCG retail is pegged at $4 trillion today, growing at a rate of just 4%, with signs of continuing sluggish performance in developed markets. On the other hand, total retail e-commerce is predicted to grow by 20% (combined annual growth rate) to become a $4 trillion market by 2020.
While unexpected by many, the Amazon-Whole Foods linkage highlights just how profoundly consumer expectations are changing with regard to food and beverage shopping—and will continue to do so moving forward.
Among global respondents, 74% say they appreciate the freedom of being connected anywhere, anytime, and 70% strongly or somewhat agree that their mobile device has made their life better. This constant connectivity has not only changed the way we keep in touch, but also the way we shop, bank and pay for goods and services.