GfK: positive expectations for 2020


After a stable 2019, GfK experts expect for the global market for technical consumer goods a value growth of +2.5 percent in 2020. Consumers will spend an estimated €1.05 trillion globally. Telecoms (+3 percent), Small Domestic Appliances (+8 percent) and Major Domestic Appliances (+2 percent) will drive the growth. Sales of IT, Office Products and Consumer Electronics are forecasted to remain stable and almost unchanged from last year. The positive growth of the tech and durable goods market in 2020 will happen across all regions, ranging from 2 to 3 percent in value. The regional mix remains almost unchanged from 2019 when the Asia-Pacific regions accounted for the majority of the sales turnover with 43 percent. According to GfK, with the expansion and spread of 5G, the telecom sector will return to growth after a turbulent 2019. The demand for smartphones in China and emerging Asia will be among the major drivers not only for the telecom sector but for the overall TCG market. Innovation, performance and premiumization will continue to be the key consumer trends boosting demand. With convenience, health and well-being winning consumer attention and spend, the strong demand for Small Domestic Appliances will continue, driven by both emerging and developed markets. At the same time, consumers are becoming increasingly digital and concerned about sustainability.
In 2020 GfK estimates that the telecom sector will account for more than 43 percent of total consumer spend, generating €454 billion euro. The runner-up will be the Major Domestic Appliances sector with estimated sales of €187 billion euro. The IT and Office sectors are forecasted to attract over 15 percent of consumer spend globally, followed by Consumer Electronics. The latter will generate over €146 billion of sales, a 14 percent share. The rising star in the tech and durable goods market is the Small Domestic Appliances sector: it is expected to grow its share in 2020 again, reaching over 9 percent of the consumer wallet with sales of €97 billion.
High performances, innovation and design are the key ingredients that enhance the consumer experiences of technical products. These trends are visible in the growing demand for OLED TV (+19 percent value growth), gaming notebooks (+15 percent value growth) and cordless handstick vacuum cleaners (+23 percent value growth). Smartphones with screen sizes of at least 6” accounted for 73 percent of the generated sales in the first nine months of 2019 and rear cameras with more than 20MP captured 26 percent value share. This emphasizes the importance of features that deliver benefits, but also of the transformation of benefits into experiences such as messaging rich content, taking and sharing photos and videos, and watching videos.
Consumers are also willing to spend more on products that make their life easier, with 46 percent of the global respondents agreeing (GfK Consumer Life 2019). This is reflected in the robust growth of robot vacuum cleaner (+18 percent value growth) as a time and effort-saving solution, as well as wash-dryers (+29 percent in value terms), which combine the benefits of a washing machine and a tumble dryer in one. Smartwatches are another example of a strongly growing category (+48 percent in value terms), which combines functionality and simplification to deliver better experiences.


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