Consumer preferences among China's ageing market might surprise you

Older middle-class consumers are not spending averse and don’t only opt for cheap items. They often select and pay for their own products and services.

This according to a series of focus groups conducted by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council in April 2015. The goal was to better understand the consumer attitudes and preferences of elderly middle-class consumers with regard to senior-specific products and services,

Respondents were older adults aged 65 or above (men and women) and adults who were carers of people 65 years of age or older either at home or in nursing homes. The adult respondents had a monthly household income of Rmb12,000 or more in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong, and Rmb8,000 or more in Wuhan.

I was delighted to see from the video and report that the authors realised opportunities ‘across the board’, not limited to the usual healthcare and retirement home stereotype.

Download the full report here.

Summary points:

  1. Older consumers are choosing and paying for their own purchases
  2. Doctors’ views and word-of-mouth: Key purchaser determinants
  3. Results oriented brand loyalty
  4. Free trials and attentive service win
  5. Not spending averse
  6. Daily necessities with medium and medium-high prices have greater market potential
  7. No blind faith in healthcare products
  8. Health monitoring and analysis opportunities
  9. Infrequent online shoppers – Shanghai is the exception
  10. Nursing homes and elderly care services need careful market positioning

Full marks to the HKTDC for their initiative.