As Americans have become more health-conscious, focusing on food and exercise choices and the effect on overall health, new trends have emerged to fulfill the demands that help consumers do this with ease. These trends impact shopper behavior and affect purchase decisions on items like groceries, clothing, and dining. New technologies make these trends easier to adopt and help people achieve their healthy lifestyle goals.
Healthy Lifestyle Trends
Though many health trends began with small groups of people such as Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers, they grow to impact consumers and brands across the country. These trends shape consumer shopping behavior, so it is vital that businesses stay in-tune to this growing industry to provide adequate products and services to meet the demand.
Organic food has become so popular that it can hardly be called a trend anymore. A recent Gallup poll revealed that 44 percent of Americans now include organic foods in their diet. Almost every grocery store now has an organic food section, offering everything from organic vegetables and fruits to meat, milk, flour, and wine. In addition to this organic section, consumers also desire locally-sourced food that is sustainable to their community and the environment. Many stores have seen success carrying local products, partnering with local farmer’s markets, and using signage to tout their local wares. Whole Foods Market sees success in selling locally-sourced items and commits to buying from local producers that meet the quality standards they have set. Some regional stores employ a “forager,” whose specific job is to source local products for each store. Walmart is the largest purchaser of locally-sourced produce in America and sells $749.6 million of locally-grown produce annually.
With the beginning of a new year an increasing amount of consumers are also interested in striving to get active and fit with the help of technology. Fitness trackers, such as the Fitbit, use technology to motivate consumers to get active, set fitness goals, and monitor their activity and heart rate. The wearables market exceeded $2 billion in 2015, will hit almost 3 billion by the time 2016 numbers are reported, and is projected to hit over 4 billion in 2017.
As interest in fitness and a desire to achieve a healthy lifestyle grows, new fashionable active wear brands, such as Fabletics, are being developed while stores like Forever 21, Victoria’s Secret, and Old Navy have begun featuring fitness clothing lines.
How Technology Impacts Healthy Lifestyle Trends
Consumers are adopting new technology to stay on top of their fitness and diet routines. As these technologies are increasingly impacting the consumer lifestyle, this market will continue to see growth.
Mobile apps are available to assist consumers with healthy lifestyle tracking like counting calories and logging meals. Apps, such as MyFitnessPal and Weight Watchers, allow users to scan barcodes and immediately gather the nutrition information about a food product directly into their app and track it with their other foods. The mobile apps are designed to sync with FitiBits, smart watches, and other gadgets, so consumers’ information is all stored in one place tracking activity level, diet, heart rate and even sleep quality giving consumers the seamless experience they crave.
Consumers’ demand for smart technology that assists them with their healthy lifestyle goals continues to grow. These health-conscious consumers drive technology advancement, pushing companies to get creative and develop ideas at new levels.
For instance, Lipton Green Tea has created a smart shopping cart. The cart’s handle is a fitness tracker, showing the calories being burned as consumers walk around the grocery store. By reminding consumers about their health in real-time at the grocery store, the cart might influence them put down the cookies and pick up more fruit.
Smart watches are also helping people get active. The watches can vibrate or send reminders that help people consciously get up and move. They also give people quick access to their health and fitness information by syncing with mobile apps.
These technologies, and the technologies that will succeed in the future, work because they disrupt everyday life to keep people’s minds on their health. They are also extremely user-friendly by being both easy to use and by communicating with other technology and devices so people can track their health on their phone, watch, tablet or computer. As these technologies advance, they also become more affordable and accessible to the average consumers. While most of the mobile apps are free or offered at a small price, fitness trackers are available at a wide range of price levels.
These technologies succeed because they support consumers’ desires to achieve healthy living without being obtrusive to their daily routine and schedules. Tap into the demand for health-conscious products by finding ways to make healthy choices easy for your consumers.