Consumers find repetitive ads most off-putting
Nearly half (45%) of consumers are put off brands when they are repeatedly shown the same ad or creative messaging, suggesting advertisers need to improve the frequency with which they show ads and target people more effectively.
Consumers are also put off when they are shown ads for products they don’t need (22%) or for products they mentioned in private (19%), while 7% are put off when they see ads for products they’ve already purchased.
Meanwhile, just 17% of consumers believe their online data is more secure than it was a year ago, with 50% suggesting it is no more secure than 12 months ago.
Just 18% of consumers have a clear understanding of how companies use their online data for advertising.
Online grocery growth slows
Online grocery sales growth slowed over the past four weeks, indicating shoppers are beginning to return to physical stores.
While online sales are 89% higher than this time last year, the channel’s share of the market dropped back to 14.5% in March from its record of 15.4% in February.
Households made 13 million additional trips to the supermarket last month and confidence is growing among older shoppers in particular, with 143,000 fewer over-65s making digital orders in March.
Businesses are starting to see signs of recovery
The majority of businesses (70%) are still being negatively impacted by the pandemic, but those reporting the impact as ‘extremely negative’ has almost halved, from 31% a year ago to 16% in March. It is also an improvement compared to November, when the figure stood at 25%.
Nearly two-thirds (63%) of businesses are starting to see signs of recovery. This is reflected in the estimates of revenue decline, which now stands at -24%, compared to -47.2% in May 2020.
Businesses expect revenue to grow by 5.9% over the next 12 months.
Gender stereotypes reinforced by home-schooling images
UK businesses used images of mothers home-schooling children three times more than fathers during the pandemic. The most downloaded image relating to home-schooling was of a father working on a laptop while the mother teaches her son at the other end of the kitchen table.
Mothers are also shown doing domestic chores and childcare two times more than fathers in images used to illustrate ‘working from home’. Meanwhile, women are 1.5 times more likely to be shown juggling childcare and work.
Jacqueline Bourke, director of creative insights, EMEA at iStock, says: “That our most downloaded visual stories of these scenarios [working from home] disproportionately show women as primary caregivers in domestic or childcare roles tells us UK brands and businesses still have a long way to go in supporting gender equality in the workplace and at home.”
Consumers want greater focus on self-care
The vast majority of UK consumers (84%) believe there should be a greater focus on self-care as a result of the pandemic.
Two-thirds of people have already increased their investment in health and wellness over the past 12 months, or are open to doing so.
When it comes to mental health, people aged between 25 and 34 are leading the way, with 25% of this group dedicating more time to improving their mental wellness.
Online conversations around mental health have also grown, with a 115% increase in social mentions around reducing anxiety and stress in the UK, while there has been a 190% spike in mental health tips.