Customer Innovation should not only focus on Digital

If you read the press it seems that most companies are obsessed with becoming digital.  There is no doubt that digitising your operations will reduce costs and improve efficiency however when it comes to the Customer this may not be true. 

 Even though the word “Digital” is quickly becoming one of the most used and least understood words of the decade some interesting statistics have been released by the ONS concerning the use of the internet.  Surprisingly 7 million people in the UK have never used the internet which equates to 14.7 per cent of the adult population.  Even more surprising is that the UK is more internet savvy than the rest of the EU.  In the 27 countries that form the European Union, 22 per cent of adults had never used the internet as at the end of 2012.

 Overall more men have used the internet than women, 88.1 per cent against 83.6 per cent however up to the age of 44, slightly more women than men have logged in online. From 65 however women’s usage tails off with 62.1 per cent (65-74) against the men’s 71.3 per cent. 

 The statistics produced by the ONS certainly expose a Customer divide which should be incorporated into all Business Strategies. If you are unaware of your customer segmentation this should be a wakeup call to start creating plans and customer personas; as without this any Product Innovation or Marketing may not be targeting your preferred market.

 In the future as the “Internet of Things” starts to emerge (where all devices are connected to the web) the reliance on “pure” internet connectivity will change and you may see an increase in Internet usage as consumers start to surf the web and shop via their TVs, Smart Watches, Glasses etc.  However this vision is not tomorrow, so even though Digital should be a priority don’t forget the 7 million people who do not use the Internet

UK Internet Usage 2012

Author: Steve Wakefield

Steve Wakefield is an experienced Innovator presently based in London.

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