By Akshay Baluni
The business landscape is changing and now! Be it the new technologies or the ever-evolving customer needs given the shifts in global economies or society in general. All such factors have brought about avenues for companies of varied nature. Companies that heavily depend on the age-old wisdom of ‘location, location, location,’ markets that cater to niches, industries that are ‘disruptive,’ and globalized teams that are intertwined are all a result of these factors. It is, therefore, paramount to be up to speed with these emerging entrepreneur trends in order to make the most of the benefits that these changes have in store.
We have compiled the following data on different industry shifts as a guide to strategize going forward. These have implications for whichever entrepreneurial endeavor that you have got planned. So you should certainly take a good read and be updating your plans accordingly. It remains crucial to keep adapting to the changing climate and maintain a competitive edge over the competition.
Entrepreneurship has surely come to being favored especially among the younger lot. In the last five years itself, a sizable 16% of America’s new entrepreneurs happened to be Millennials. The idea of venturing out on one’s own has definitely gained traction.
One does, however, have to grasp that becoming a successful entrepreneur isn’t all that simple as figures reveal so. As per the report ‘Survival of private sector establishments by opening year,’ only about 56% of new start-ups from 2014 were able to survive as of 2019. The speed bumps are always there in business. And most new, and even ‘seasoned,’ entrepreneurs can find it rather tough to keep up with the evolving market trends. It’s a classic case of being with the times.
Research also shows that putting the right foot forward is also an important aspect apart from the external market forces. A chunk as large as 42% of failed businesses were incepted when the need in the market didn’t even exist for them. Nothing can be more doomed from the start than a product or service that nobody is out in the market for. As per CBInsights findings, 17% of businesses succumbed due to user-unfriendly offerings.
These are just some illustrations of why you should be on top of entrepreneur trends to reap the benefits. Maximizing longevity and building a business that grows in tandem with the dynamic nature of the domestic and international markets is something one has to pay heed to. For doing so, following are the most noteworthy entrepreneur trends that shall prevail in the upcoming year.
1. Mobile Commerce
With 5G soon to become widespread, it’s imperative for modern businesses to reach the customers wherever they may be. Our phones are pretty much an extension of ourselves these days. And we all spend a significant amount of time tapping at the screens. The daily average clocks in around three hours and fifteen minutes for a regular mobile phone user. Wherein most people check their devices about 58 times in a single day. Hence, it’s a no-brainer for budding entrepreneurs to use this to their advantage.
It should come as no surprise that experts predict further shutting down of thousands of major American and international brands’ stores by the end of the year. With even shopping malls following suit! This shift in shopping habits has come to fore as a result of companies like Amazon contributing to an exponential 166% rise in e-commerce sales between the short period of 2010 to 2017. Entrepreneurs that use the platform to build their businesses have certainly benefited from this surge. The trends and programs of online giants are in place to make sure that e-commerce businesses will continue to enjoy the advantage over erstwhile ‘traditional’ distributors.
According to Statista.com, mobile commerce is going to account for up to 54% of total e-commerce sales by 2021. The online sales are only going to significantly increase owing to the economic climate affected by the global pandemic. It’s no surprise that consumers are becoming largely dependent on their mobile devices. Especially for services that can make running errands like grocery shopping a thing of the past for a sizable portion of the population. Businesses are constantly trying to one up their competitors by providing simpler and more streamlined processes to make payments and transactions smoother to continue to expand their clientele.
2 & 3. Social Commerce & Internet Media Outlets
Social media is pretty much a ‘necessary evil’ for young and established businesses alike. Which is why they play a big part in the overall entrepreneur trends. With the meteoric rise in social media usage, social commerce is an organic extension that continues to increase in popularity. Buying and selling social media sites and apps are more common than ever, as it provides a rather easier marketplace with getting the opportunity to engage directly with people.
eBay can be credited as the first to have recognized this back in 2011 that urged them to build an integration to make the e-commerce platform more conducive to social interactions.
Social commerce is everywhere. From user-curated shopping like Svpply or Lyst to group buying like Groupon and from peer recommendations like Yelp to social network-driven sales like Facebook. Facebook relaunched its Marketplace in 2016 in response to millions of people visiting the “buy and sell” groups, and it has been constantly growing since then. The integration with Messenger makes it convenient for both buyers and sellers to shop while being in touch with the other party.
Other social platforms are going to follow suit as social selling becomes more sophisticated. Social networking sites are regularly updating their tools for meeting the needs of their users. Marketers and business experts are looking forward in eager anticipation as to how practices will evolve as people engage more.
There is also a huge market for internet content. And many young entrepreneurs have made hay in the light of the demand. Monetized content has brought on about an influx of gamers, comedians, artists, educators, and more to social networks. Media is online and enterprising people have profitably created their bases. Twitch, Spotify, and biggest of all, YouTube have given platforms to everyone.
Being a blogger, vlogger, or gamer is no longer just for fun but serious job and business for many. Young creators that aren’t even of legal age yet are raking in thousands of dollars. Sponsorships have become a big source of income as even top brands realize the reach of influencers. Performance marketing, which includes affiliate marketing, is another outlet where businesses get promotion and the creators get paid for the required action of sharing unique links.
These are worth checking out as 96% of internet users on YouTube are 18 to 24-year olds. And a young base is a big demographic to overlook. It isn’t restrictive as we have seen a sudden jump in numbers of people of all ages experimenting with the available avenues. The most prominent one being TikTok. Display ads, organic product placements are a win-win for both promoters and clients as it only requires the most basic of equipment. Entities and creators just have to come up with relatable, engaging, and shareable content that ropes in their audience.
4. Subscription-Based Business
A recent report published by Zion Market Research has speculated the global subscription market to be worth $10.5 billion in the next five years. The multiplying of subscribers to existing brands and arrival of new subscription-based businesses have contributed to this prediction.
The end-user industry which includes the likes of telecom, healthcare, media and entertainment, retail, and IT to name a few, there are loads of segments that are yet to be explored. What we see happening in the world of music and movie streaming, we should soon be seeing occur in these, as well. Meal plans, gym memberships, online classes, and even apps are increasingly adopting the subscription-based model.
This scheme or model is the future as a steady revenue stream is always more plausible than intermittent sales. They also make sense for the customer as the automatic recurring payment systems are any day more efficient.
Amazon Prime and Netflix have been doing well with their services. Which only led to other players entering the market with their exclusive content. Their success has boosted the confidence of not just digital service providers but also other businesses as they strive to build a long-term relationship than to just get a sale.
Entrepreneurs and even those with well-established businesses are figuring out consumption-based models. Because the easy automation cuts down the labour and overhead costs substantially. Coupled with a steady flow of income, it’s indeed a great deal.
Digital automation tools are being employed, together with club management platforms and payment gateway services, in earnest by many brands to make the transition easy as the switch-over is inevitable given the trends.
5. Digital Nomads
The phenomenon of digital nomadism started gaining traction a few years back and has only become more prolific. A large percentage of workers are opting to work from home and instead of a sole full-time job choose to keep several freelance ones. This is pretty wise, as proven by numbers, entry towards entrepreneurship. Over a period of time many freelancers establish their consultancies or professional service businesses after having gained experience and a feel for the market.
This setup, in turn, works for established entrepreneurs as it opens up more employment options since hiring remote workers helps in considerable savings on overheads like power, equipment, and maintenance of physical space.
In 2019 alone, 57 million Americans worked as freelancers and the experts deem that it is not quite the peak as they expect the number to rise even higher in the coming years. By 2021, the trend ought to become a norm for many entrepreneurs citing the current state of affairs in the employment sector.
Those who are just setting up their new ventures can benefit from taking this route as those established are regularly on the lookout for reliable and productive remote workers to man the digital touchpoints. Many have built thriving companies without requiring a commercial space thanks to burgeoning connectivity and vast growth in internet capabilities. One can facilitate transactions from virtually anywhere and correspondence is simplified with easily accessible services. The flexibility and location independency are added pluses, making for one of the biggest entrepreneur trends we have seen in a long time.
6. Small Specialty Retail Stores
Do you remember Rose Apothecary from Schitt’s Creek? It’s a great example of the concept of hyperlocal specialty stores that many entrepreneurs, much like the series’ David, are setting up to feature and deal in products and services that are specific to their localities. Ranging from a mini eatery that works with locally sourced ingredients to an organic juice bar, such spots are springing up everywhere. Many businesses employ creativity to distinguish themselves like a pet café or a workshop centric space that doubles as a theatre.
Many entrepreneurs find this exciting as the business becomes a branch of their personal expression, and they can explore their passions whilst simultaneously sharing it with like-minded individuals. With proper planning and a unique idea, it is not that difficult to build clout and succeed as there are takers for all kinds of quirky, bizarre, or even the most random of concepts.
There have been many who have set up thrift stores as it caters to a fast-growing community of people who want to reduce the impact fast fashion has on the environment. Similar stores tend to service niche markets and invariably build a loyal base of patrons.
Food and beverage market in itself continues to have new needs of customers almost every other day. Specialized products like vegan meats, cheeses, and different types of milks are some of the wide array of products entrepreneurs can consider. The main goal remains to source locally or even produce one’s own and eventually build strong connections to sell well.
Final Say on 2021 Entrepreneur Trends
These are just a few of the many entrepreneur trends that are going to make their impact felt in the coming year. Many are interconnected and following one can open up further windows to peep through or into. Businesses are related to people, and these entrepreneur trends are but a reflection of the symbiotic relationship between the two.
The development of niche markets came to be because of disruptions caused by certain players to stir new ideas and concepts into action and it’s an ongoing process. Each step forward creates possibilities and opportunities. No matter if you want to bring about more diversity, or engage in eco-friendly practices, or address social responsibilities, the pivotal intent should be to take the leap of faith to be able to make a difference in whichever way possible.
The socioeconomic spheres require reshaping all the time and entrepreneurs can play an important part in that by acknowledging the parallels. It may sometimes take longer to find the direction to take and more so for an idea to thrive. Technological advancement is a great advantage and is one of the many resources that can be mobilized to effectively concretize one’s bearings. So hopefully these entrepreneur trends brought to you by Booming Businesses can get you set on your way.