Five lifestyle trends to consider to give your business a boost this year

These days, consumers are demanding more and more from food businesses, from new flavours and product formats to subscriptions, personalised products and speedy delivery.

Whether you’re selling sweet treats and bakes yourself or selling to retail, food to go and hospitality clients, understanding lifestyle trends can help you make the right flavour, product and format decisions for your business.

Here are the five lifestyle trends we’re keeping our eye on this year:

#1. Doorstep delivery

Covid drove a huge increase in home deliveries and since lockdown, demand for delivery has continued to grow. Consumers can now get almost anything they want direct to their door, with café chains like Costa and Greggs jumping on the home delivery trend.

Deliveroo saw sales 60 per cent higher in 2021 than 2020, with more and more lunch, grocery and coffee and cake options being added to the big delivery apps every day. So, there’s opportunity to target customers wherever you find them – at work, on the go, or on the sofa.

#2. Fine eating, not dining

While a trip to a fancy restaurant is still the indulgence of choice for many UK consumers, since Covid, it seems the focus has flipped to be all about the food, not the fuss. So, while quality, luxury and a touch of something special is high up on foodies’ wish lists, according to The Food People, consumers are more likely to choose a homely gastro pub than an opulent bistro these days.

And that trend can be translated into coffee shops, cafes and travel, where flavour and innovation can drive real customer loyalty.

#3. Bake at home

While you might enjoy binge-watching Is it Cake? on Netflix, not many of us have the time in our busy lives to laminate, prove, bake and ice to get the sweet treats we love at home. So, frozen bake at home cakes and pastries are the perfect way to find middle ground. According to Markets & Markets Research (USA), the total global frozen bakery market will grow from $22.3 billion in 2021 to $29.5 billion by 2026, at an average annual growth rate of 5.8 per cent.  

From ready to bake croissants to slice and bake cookie dough, bake at home isn’t a new thing, but it’s an area businesses could capitalise on to boost sales – for example, buy a ready to eat pastry today and a bag of the same product frozen for breakfast tomorrow.

#4. All day snacking

While the rule for healthy eating used to be ‘three square meals a day’ the rise of the ‘little and often’ eater has meant snacks have become a huge opportunity for food to go and out of home food businesses.

According to WSGN, 64 per cent of global consumers prefer snacking over traditional mealtimes, a number that’s climbed 5 per cent since 2019. And this casual grazing culture is opening opportunities to bring familiar food items into unexpected occasions. For example, US brand Evergreen’s has taken its mini waffles off the breakfast table, introducing whole grains and all-day flavours like Zucchini and Carrot, Chocolate Chip and Matcha, and Peanut Butter and Banana to offer the same format in multiple flavours across every time of day.

#5. Drive thru

Drive past any retail park on a weekend and you’ll see that drive thru is going strong, and growing. More than 70 per cent of UK consumers under the age of 30 say they’d use a drive thru from their favourite FTG brands if they were more readily available, with 40 per cent of over 50s loving the convenience too.

And with Starbucks, Costa Coffee, LEON and Greggs all opening more drive thrus year on year, food formats that can easily be passed through a car window and eaten on the go are likely to continue to grow in demand. 

For more ideas and insights to boost your sales, plus how QBC can help you, download our free e-book now.