Like it or not, we’re living in the Post-Quality Era.
Convenience and speed are now foremost in consumers’ expectations; the notion that some things are worth waiting for seems increasingly quaint. Intrinsic, commonly-accepted measures of “quality” that prevailed not long ago are still precious to some, but not the main consideration for most. And yet, along with being fast and convenient, the actual consumer experience must meet an acceptable standard of quality.
The need for utmost speed and convenience puts brands in a perpetual earthquake zone, with fault lines threatening to disrupt every familiar process they’ve had for creating and selling their products. What do consumers want? Will maximizing convenience and speed undermine quality to the point where satisfaction sinks and sales collapse? With everything on shaky ground, good research data is more essential than ever.
You know the stories about the sweeping changes that have transformed music, media, technology and other industries. Seemingly ironclad brands failed to anticipate or respond effectively to change as each assumed that its reputation for quality would matter more than newer, faster, more convenient ways to access information and entertainment. Their bottom lines over the past decade or more say it wasn’t so.
A new report from Boston Consulting Group entitled “How Digital Delivery Puts the Restaurant Value Chain Up for Grabs” forecasts similar disruption in the restaurant business. Increasingly, it says, food alone won’t win diners’ hearts. Getting it delivered fast and on demand, either by the restaurant itself or by a third-party who takes orders and handle deliveries for multiple restaurants, may be the new prime directive. Diners, like music and news consumers, will value effortless eating over investing the time it takes to eat out.
Meanwhile, as with news and music, there will still be a substantial market for the legacy experience of dining out. Will restaurants be able to satisfy both kinds of consumer preferences? How should they price dine-in and delivery options? Will convenience alone instill customer loyalty? Does excellent quality generate profits? Should restaurants try to reward the dine-in experience over the deliver-out option?
Answering these questions and many more will be imperative not just for restaurants, but for all kinds of products and services that must negotiate balances and tradeoffs between demands for convenience and speed on one hand, and quality on the other. Market research is no exception. Suppliers must provide tools that are fast and convenient, yet capable of satisfying clients’ demand for quality data and productive insights.
It’s with that in mind that MFourDIY™ was created. The first true-mobile, do-it-yourself survey-building tool gives you the speed and convenience of intuitive, easy-to-used DIY technology. Quality data springs from a panel of more than a million smartphone respondents who are engaged by survey experiences that are fun and easy. For more on getting speed and convenience without sacrificing quality, just click here.