Accenture Study Indicates Consumer Willingness to Spend

Conventional wisdom says that during a sluggish economy, people generally save more and spend less. A new study released by Accenture flies in the face of that wisdom, saying that while the economy has slowed, consumers' willingness to spend remains high. A worldwide management consulting and technology services company, Accenture's research report indicates that consumers are not opposed to spending money in a troubled economy, as long they are receiving solid value for their money. The report, "Consumer Attitudes Toward Innovation," is based on a survey conducted by Accenture's Institute for Strategic Change. In the survey Accenture interviewed 3,500 consumers in the United States and in strategic European markets. Brian Johnson, a partner in Accenture's Strategy & Business Architecture group, believes that companies that focus on creating quality products, instead of inexpensive products, will have better success in the near future. "The race to win on price has left consumers indifferent and desperate for product and service innovations that provide practical benefits," Johnson says. According to Accenture's research, there are a number of areas in which consumers are currently more willing to spend money for quality purchases, including automobiles, consumer goods, electronics, household appliances, and entertainment. More than 60 percent of the respondents to the survey said that they felt there had been little or no innovation in products or services related to a number of key markets, including healthcare, government, investing, and insurance. Consumers also commented that areas in which they were used to innovation, such as healthcare and entertainment, seemed to have become stagnant in the past few years. Accenture contends that its results show that companies should focus on creating quality products to not only generate revenue, but also to restore consumer confidence.
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