We continue to experience different trends in consumer behavior as well as entrepreneurship. The onset of the pandemic has influenced major changes that have created new opportunities and changed the business landscape. We've also seen extensive use of technology and increased remote working.
We asked entrepreneurs and business owners about the future trends entrepreneurs see in their industry and here are the responses.
#1- Use of cheaper online divorce tools
Relationship troubles and high tensions during the pandemic will lead to an abundance of divorce filings in the United States. Demand for divorce services will lead to more professionals getting into the divorce industry. My profession is specific to the financial circumstances of the divorce. The financial divorce industry will be significantly affected as many Certified Financial Planners and Divorce Financial Analysts are retiring. We will need an influx of younger generations getting into the divorce services industry. In my professional opinion, I foresee couples using cheaper online divorce tools rather than divorce attorneys and other divorce professionals for non-complicated divorces. Complex and high asset divorces will continue to hire divorce attorneys and divorce professionals for years to come.
Thanks to Olivia Summerhill, Summerhill Wealth Management!
#2- Hybridized-online and in-person format
The trends shifting in the eLearning sector due to the influence of COVID 19 on schools and colleges across the United States and the world are shifting to a hybridized-online and in-person format. Due to online learning, more companies will focus their efforts in creating interactive media, such as video games, comics, instructional videos in order to captivate their audience and promote learning their desired topics. Educators are looking for tools and programs to help facilitate their transition into this new learning environment, making affordable to free software key to this niche industry.
Thanks to Kurt Bodenstedt, PDAFL LLC!
#3- Two trends
The housing market is set to have another booming year in 2021. The housing demand has far outpaced the supply in 2020 and this will continue into 2021. However, despite the surge of suburban moves, we’ll still see a resurgence in downtown demand and living as the vaccine is dispersed throughout the country. Demand is set to be strong throughout 2021 and online shopping/buying/selling will continue now that buyers can view and transact virtually/online despite proximity to property.
Thanks to Luke Smith, We Buy Property In Kentucky!
#4-Rise of individuals deciding to launch startups
I am a business owner who works to help entrepreneurs incorporate or form LLCs for their businesses. The trend I see in our industry is a continued rise of individuals deciding to launch startups and embrace entrepreneurship.. All throughout 2020, people have decided now is the time to start a business. They have embraced do-it-yourself innovation and creative workarounds that come with starting a business in a pandemic. Entrepreneurs work to meet existing needs that people have and to create solutions to problems that make lives easier. The future is ripe for this type of innovative and nimble thinking and behavior!
Thanks to Deborah Sweeney, MyCorporation.com!
#5- Change in marketing
I foresee a shift in the way products are marketed. During the pandemic, we have seen a boost in self-care awareness. For skin and body care companies, our products can be seen as wellness supplies that can provide comfort during these stressful times.
Thanks to Benjamin Smith, Disco!
#6- Rollup strategies and reverse takeovers
Trends in the esports industry include a continued focus on rollup strategies to consolidate smaller companies into much larger ones. This allows the larger company to focus horizontally and paint a better picture. In addition, reverse takeovers are popular for access to capital and the continued maturation of the esports industry in terms of new roles that traditionally haven't existed in the sector but do elsewhere.
Thanks to Bill Elafros, Elafros Consulting / BEAT esports!
#7-Consumers skipping through the classic Google ads
As we have all been transplanted into the digital realm, social media and influencer marketing is bigger than ever. Youtubers alone garners so much growth for companies, especially in the beauty and wellness industry, through paid sponsorships on regular lifestyle content. Consumers skip through the classic Google ads on Youtube but they sit through “tutorials” their favorite influencers deliver and drive up engagement and sales with the discount codes tailored to the influencer.
Thanks to Daniel Shapiro, Fourlaps!
Easily my top pick. According to Infinite Dial 20, 55 percent—155 million—people in the United States listened to a podcast this year, up from 51 percent in 2019. With a quick-moving news cycle and the pandemic pushing everything online, digital platforms like podcasts are the perfect way to connect with target audiences on their terms. By providing 15 to 60 minutes of well-executed content that can be listened to at any time, companies can share valuable information, trends, and updates, as well as deliver specific messaging, with the potential to reach millions of Americans. This enables companies to grow the brand’s public profile, highlight leaders within the organization, and create dynamic opportunities for press coverage well beyond the scope of local outlets. And when we do go back to the office? Podcasts are a great way to occupy time while sitting in traffic.
Thanks to Sarah Farrant, NINICO Communications!
#9-More precise algorithms to match couples
I think that the next generation of dating apps will match people based on more than just looks. Personality compatibility is key for fulfilling, healthy relationships and I think that the dating apps of the future will use more precise algorithms to pair couples. People waste huge amounts of time on bad dates because of meaningless swiping and a more considered way of determining whether people are compatible is much needed.
Thanks to Jessica Alderson, So Syncd!
#10- Small intimate and micro weddings
I'm a NYC wedding planner and owner of my wedding planning business, Intimate Occasions By Ikiya. We are seeing major changes in the wedding and event industry and one of the biggest ones is the small intimate and micro weddings. Since COVID, couples have either had to postpone their wedding or downgrade their guest list. The ones who are safely marching forward are focusing on having their closest families and friends with them to celebrate and it has been beautiful. The level of happiness and intimacy for these smaller weddings has been truly heartwarming! Another trend along with the smaller weddings has been virtual weddings/wedding parties. Live stream weddings are a thing and it might be here to stay since it’s a great way for more people to celebrate without having to be present and possibly risk their health and others during the pandemic. It’s super creative and I love it!
Thanks to Ikiya Devonish, Intimate Occasions By Ikiya!
#11- Diversification and inclusion
With the recent social upheaval, next year will surely be a year that emphasizes diversity and inclusion. Marketing and public relations trends will most definitely move towards diversifying the image and representation of brands and businesses.
Thanks to Assaf Kostiner, PaintYourLife!
#12- Reliance on customer feedback
The publishing industry, and especially the children's book publishing industry, are extremely set in their ways, having created and sold many of the same books for decades, via the same channels (many big publishers don't even sell their books online!). COVID has caused them to completely reconsider their model. They are now asking themselves: ‘How will we reach our audience if they can't, won't or don't want to shop in bookshops anymore?' This question is going to change everything for the publishing industry. No longer will they be able to print out-of-touch books that appeal only to those very familiar with literary conventions. Instead, they will now need to rely on customer feedback to create stories that appeal to the new generation, and they will also need to replicate the ‘pick up and browse' experience of a bookstore online to continue to reach their audience. The digital era is now upon the publishing industry and they will need to find new ways to connect to stay relevant.
Thanks to Teigan Margetts, Ethicool Books!
#13- Digitizing everything
In the outdoor excursion industry, there are many trends that I see happening as of late. One of those trends is digitizing everything … as I am sure this is a trend in many industries. The way it is happening in the camping and RV world, is being able to make reservations online is imperative as is being able to use a self-pay method once you are at the site. Eliminating human contact in a nutshell. Which, hey… it is what we seek to do when we hit the outdoors anyways, right?
Thanks to Ravi Parikh, RoverPass!
#14- Incredible surfacing of alcohol delivery apps
The alcohol industry is an industry that has hardly evolved since Prohibition Era. There hasn’t been much growth— however, with the incredible surfacing of delivery apps (especially this year), how we drink is evolving. I think delivery services will continue to push to the forefront of consumer’s everyday lives. With that in mind, alcohol deliveries are bringing a new life to the industry, and will continue to do so.
Thanks to Chris Vaughn, Saucey!
#15- Use of functional plant-based foods
I believe that the major trend for 2021 in the health and wellness industry will be the use of functional plant-based foods to provide support for the body and mind throughout this very trying time. Choosing healthier plant-based alternatives and making choices that put health first is one area of our lives which we can control in the midst of so much uncertainty. People will stop buying expensive juices or pills but instead focus on real, whole foods and nutrient-dense superfoods. This will improve health overall, reduce bloating & inflammation, improve sleep, increase energy levels, and support the immune system! I predict 2021 will be all about taking small steps towards realizing how easy eating plant-based actually is and how much healthier it will make you feel.
Thanks to Michael Kuech, Your Super!
#16- Rise of citizen developers
2021 is going to be the year of the citizen developer – someone without formal software development training who uses IT tools and technology to create a business application. This concept has been taking off in such consumer-facing technology sectors as mobile app development and gaming. In 2021, citizen developers will play a major role in the robotic process automation space. I expect citizen developers will be able to automate a specific process that is part of their day-to-day work. Automation will help the citizen developer save time, improve efficiency, or simply delegate a tedious task to a bot so they can work on other things. One of the benefits of the citizen developer movement is that it solves the developer shortage problem. However, to succeed with people who aren’t trained engineers, RPA software tools must be intuitive and easy to use.
Thanks to Harel Tayeb, Kryon Systems!
#17- Employee burnout and productivity loss
I think it is natural for employees to start experiencing burnout, especially at this time while working remotely. We have been stuck in our homes for almost 10 months. Working from home is difficult, especially without the appropriate conditions. No one expected to be working from home for this long and looking at the current state of our country and the Covid-19 case numbers, we will all be working from home for much longer. One piece of advice I can offer to small business owners in 2021 is to focus on employee happiness and overall mental health. I am working hard to communicate with my employees daily. Scheduling check-ins for productivity updates but also morale and health updates, which are extremely important to me. I want to be considerate of everyone's situation and be a grounding source of reassurance and support.
Thanks to Ashwin Sokke, WOW Skin Science!
#18- Conversational marketing
I believe conversational marketing is the most exciting trend we’ll be seeing this year and in the years to come. Conversational Marketing is expected to hit the mainstream in the next 2 to 5 years but is already starting to have an impact. We’re seeing more and more smart speakers being used in homes. The adoption of this technology has affected their owners’ daily life in a variety of ways – from looking up dinner recipes to asking for recommendations on all sorts of purchases. And in light of the ongoing pandemic, I think smart speakers and the technology behind them will be even more valuable as more people are choosing to shop for basic necessities online.
Thanks to Oliver Baker, Intelivita!
#19- Shift towards video marketing
In 2021, I predict businesses largely shifting their marketing strategies towards video marketing. Video marketing has been on the rise over the last few years and I don’t predict it will be going anywhere in 2021. With this year’s explosion of TikTok and Instagram creating Reels to stay relevant in the social media market, video is becoming more relevant day by day. Also, the current state of the world under a global pandemic is contributing to video marketing increasing in popularity. Consumers are spending more time online than ever before. Furthermore, we are noticing a shift in the type of video content audiences are searching for and consuming. Quick, educational, and attention-grabbing content is far outperforming the visually stimulating and aspirational content that was favored in previous years. People don’t want to feel that they are wasting time on these platforms. They want to be entertained while simultaneously learning tips and tricks on how to improve their lives. Business owners should not shy away from video marketing as it can bring high rewards. While it does require some thought and creativity, it is not as costly as most would think. Additionally, I have a lot of conviction that influencer marketing is going to play a huge role for consumer brands, but that it won’t look or feel quite like what you think of when you think of influencer marketing today. Influencer marketing will be less pay-to-play and more like earned media, on the obvious Youtube and Instagram but also on other community-driven platforms whether visual, audio, or written.
Thanks to Eric Wu, Gainful!
#20- Virtual reality concerts
Due to the situation brought by the pandemic, artists are getting more and more desperate searching for ways to have their concerts. And with virtual technology advancing more and more each day, it is not impossible that VR concerts would be a thing in 2021 and in the coming years. This type of concert would allow us not just to experience quality sounds at the comfort of our homes, but so as visuals with high-quality resolution.
Thanks to James Bullard, Sound Fro!
#21- Short attention spans
The biggest future trend I see in my industry is that company branding will matter more than ever before. Most new entrepreneurs don’t think twice about their brand but it can literally make or break their business. This is more true today than ever before now that there are countless alternatives to every product or service imaginable. Sure, every business may have their own world-changing differentiator but from the outside they all look the same at which point the main differentiator ends up becoming their brand. In a world full of distractions, we no longer have the attention span to thoroughly research what we buy so we rely on our emotions which means customer perception is everything.
Thanks to Deven Patel, Alter.com!
#22- Home Exercise
Fitness junkies are now considering building their own home gyms, and will be more comfortable exercising at home this coming 2021, which will mean the rise of demand in fitness videos, elevating the platform for content creators to focus more on videos that can be done within the confines of home. To add, home exercise will start to be a regular thing, and not an ‘I-Miss-To-Hit-The-Gym' exercise alibi.
Thanks to Lianne Sanders, Total Shape!
#23- Acceptance and inclusivity
Mental health has been at the forefront of this year. It has also been a year of change and lobbying for BIPOC. I think that the skincare industry will continue to shift towards acceptance of all skin types, tones, and textures. We have notoriously seen a lack of representation of BIPOC in skincare throughout the years, and it is just not acceptable. Not only in the skincare industry, but I think in the beauty industry as a whole we will see a wider range of acceptance of consumers who don’t have “perfect” skin or “perfect” looks. Acceptance and inclusivity is always “trendy”, and I think the years to come are going to be huge for these industries.
Thanks to Olamide Olowe, Topicals!
#24- Personal finances awareness
The year of 2020 has caused a lot of people to really consider a lot of their decisions and the way they handled numerous day-to-day activities. One thing at the top of that list is financial responsibility. When nearly everyone on the planet was impacted by complete loss of employment, layoffs and reduced business revenue, it definitely created a need for a strong financial plan. As we begin to ease into 2021, that's surely something that will still remain on the minds of everyone affected. Therefore, I expect to see more people, now aware of the delicate nature of personal finance, ready to consult with professionals on issues that they may have attempted to handle independently before these uncertain times. Whether it's creating a savings strategy or trying to get out of debt, it's going to feel much more important now that they've experienced unprecedented financial change.
Thanks to Josh Stomel, Turbo Finance!
#25- Innovations in healthy food
Healthy living and intuitive lifestyles are becoming more widespread each year. We have seen some amazing products and items pop up over the years that bend to each and every dietary preference. It’s almost like it’s a race to put out the most delicious food with the best nutritional value. I think we’re going to see some pretty insane innovations within the health food industry, as we have over the last few years as well. Ideally, some “fast-food” keto options would pop up!
Thanks to William Schumacher, Uprising Food!
#26- Growing significance in digital payments
Digital payments have become more important than ever, especially as we head into the new normal in this pandemic season. This will be a trend in the finance industry in 2021. COVID-19 has influenced consumers to consider P2P transfer, contactless payments, and global payments since they are encouraged to stay in their homes and limit physical contact. More and more enterprises are also following the lead and offering interesting online services by partnering with fintech companies. Going paperless and fully digital also allows banks to save a lot of money in terms of their operational costs. Two trends in 2020 have made the fintech landscape highly significant this year. First, Latin America has stepped up its game in terms of providing financial access to SMBs and poor consumers through apps. The digital lending platform area has been growing fast that borrowers have now surged to take advantage of tech innovations. Sempli from Colombia is a prime example that offers loans as low as $10,000 for SMBs payable up to 3 years. Second, European fintech companies are taking over North America thanks to the Open Banking regulatory initiatives and PSD2. This has expanded international payment networks significantly during this season. Funding has been affected but as the need for cashless payment platforms become more prominent, we're seeing a rebound in investments in this area. Grab and GoJek are doing well in Asia, particularly in the southeast region. Mexico's Creditjusto is also following suit having originated more than $70 million in loans the past year.
Thanks to Michael Hammelburger, Cost Reduction Consultants!
#27- Eco-friendly businesses
The most promising trend in the jewelry business and just about every industry, is taking care of our environment, the planet. Women today are more socially conscious and aware of sustainability, environmental impact, and natural alternatives than ever before. It is no surprise, then, that many couples are concerned with choosing an eco-friendly ring that will show their commitment to the planet even as they make their commitment to each other. An eco-friendly vintage engagement ring will make a truly great gift anytime and keep our commitment to the planet. This is a core trend today for my business and should be a strategy for every business on the planet today, large or small. How to make a profit while actually being eco-friendly.
Thanks to Suzanne Sachs, Vintagediamondring.com!
#28- Pride in identity
As a people, we have learned so many valuable things during the pandemic – many of which we will carry into 2021 and beyond. One thing that many Americans have realized is a complete sense of identity. They are proud of who they are, and hope to maintain that sense of pride with quality products that reflect their dedication and service. As the founder of a military uniform superstore, I have seen an increase in interest in the pride that accompanies wearing a United States uniform. I don't see that trend changing anytime soon.
Thanks to Jared Matthew Zabaldo, USAMM!