Top 2020 Consumer Trends Shaping the New Landscape

Although this year’s Dreamforce event had to be held virtually, it was still all about making connections. Here’s a recap of an information-packed session from Dreamforce 2020 day three, The State of Digital: Top Consumer Trends & Insights of 2020.

The top 2020 consumer trends shaping the new landscape

This was a year like no other, when seismic disruption and rapid innovation reshaped the business landscape in radical new ways. Now more than ever it’s important to pay attention to where the consumer is going. Here are three trends that are driving the new consumer.

Trend 1: All-digital experiences are now mandatory

The new consumer-centric landscape is being driven by three key things: online shopping, social media and contactless pickup. Q2 saw a 104% increase in sales from social, while Q3 saw a 55% increase in digital revenue. Tyler Lunceford, Manager, Product Marketing, Salesforce, says, “We’re watching social channels emerge not just as major channels for brands to market to their audience, but also as shopping channels. Sixty-percent of millennials today have made a purchase directly from social media.” 

According to the Salesforce Shopping Index, Q2 2020, companies who responded to the pandemic by offering click and collect or BOPUS (buy online, pick-up in store) grew their YoY revenue 2.3x faster than those that didn’t. Businesses that aren’t offering digital experiences in this climate are running the risk of quickly becoming irrelevant, especially in the face of further lockdown measures.

Trend 2: Agility is the new competitive advantage

The ability to respond to external disruptions is separating high-performing companies from struggling ones. According to the Salesforce State of Marketing report, high-performing companies are 2.4x more agile and adaptable than those that underperform. One of the secrets to their success is in combining top-of-the-class technology with a culture of innovation. 

As Maureen Maggioni, Director, Product Marketing, Salesforce, states, “Organisations need to adapt a culture of agility. That’s one that doesn’t punish failure, but instead encourages rapid experimentation and celebrates learning.” 

A McKinsey & Company report shows that when leaders foster a sense of urgency and provide a mandate to experiment, companies are 1.7x more successful. “Even if there is imperfect information”, Maggioni says, “Businesses that build a culture to act quickly are finding success.”

Trend 3: Personalisation is more important than ever

The Salesforce Shopping Index, Q3 2020, shows that despite the increase in digital shopping traffic, conversion rates declined from 35% to 20%. “We live in the golden era of consumerism,” Tyler Lunceford says. “It has never been easier to shop. There have never been more brands; more ads; more channels. In order to stand out amongst the crowd, companies need to think about how they put a personal touch on their marketing messages, their offerings and their service interactions.” 

Companies looking to stand out in the crowd and reach their ideal consumer need to start building a foundation of data. As Maureen Maggioni puts it, “The bedrock to personalisation is data. You need a platform that can pull in data from different systems and produce a single identity for every customer. Your North Star here is relevance.” 

Is your business trending up or down?

Digitalisation; personalisation; agility – these are the things that are defining the current moment. Businesses that aren’t digitally mature will struggle to offer the experiences that today’s consumers expect. They’ll find it difficult to nurture an innovative mindset and build agility, and they’ll be challenged to engage with customers on a personal level. But by getting ahead of today’s trends, businesses will be well prepared to face the challenges of tomorrow. 

To see the whole session and discover some of Maureen Maggioni’s best practices for businesses in the new climate, visit Dreamforce to You here.


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