SHENZHEN, China, Dec. 4, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- In 2020, consumer habits have changed dramatically; reflected by the adaptation seen throughout businesses and organisations across the globe. With more and more people turning to online services, the reliance on mobile internet has accelerated.
This is evident with the growth of online on-demand home services, such as food delivery, which grew by 25% in Gross Merchandising Value (GMV) to about US$195 billion just this year alone. Customers clearly look towards having convenience as part of their modern lifestyle, having the services delivered to their homes rather travelling to retail stores on their own. This is observed globally, with China leading the growth. China now has the largest and fastest-growing market for online On-Demand Home Services, with forecasted compound annual growth rate of 15% to US$181 billion in 2024.
While we can partly blame this on the global pandemic, it is also worth considering the overall context of the last few years. These behaviours have occasionally spelled problems for organisations struggling to reach new customers, thanks to technology, but it has also opened some exciting opportunities for those ready to explore a more digital world.
The changing world of the lifestyle industry
From food delivery to wider lifestyle industries, businesses are having to adapt to this change to stay relevant and successful in consumer's lives. Notably, successful businesses in the industry and lifestyle sectors are using technological advances to progress.
In 2019, food delivery accounted for about 80% of all food orders, however, only contributed to around 30% of gross profit. Food delivery has been so popular in recent years that in 2017, the US saw 70% of all deliveries related to food products. Since 2017, food delivery services have had to identify weaknesses and continuously adapt to remain competitive.
These changing consumer trends are shaping how online organisations conduct their business. Individuals are increasingly looking to their smartphones to find, browse and order food and other products, creating an appetite for high-quality and tailored platforms such as Meituan. Notably, Meituan demonstrates how lifestyle applications can adapt and thrive in an evolving consumer market. The superapp is now the number one lifestyle shopping and service platform, with an estimated market value of US$250 billion in October. The platform succeeds because it shows a willingness to accept digital change and offers a service that consumers love.
Other on-demanded services are also seeing competitive growth in all sectors. For example, Meituan reports that it serves around 400 and 60 million users, and supports 6.3 million merchants for services such as hotel and flight bookings, online retail and other new services.
As well as generating more demand overall, consumers are growing more familiar with new technology such as Machine Learning (ML) and digital assistants and so are looking for online platforms that integrate these capabilities.
Huawei offers business the opportunity to create a more seamless services for their customers
With more food outlets and online e-commerce platforms rising to the challenge of using mobile-based online delivery services to reach more customers, competition is rife. Ordering food and necessities online offers consumers the chance to save time and energy, with an often-huge selection of different choices available to them at the swipe of finger. Huawei assistance provides the technology needed to stay competitive and relevant within this market. To start, it provides consumers with more direct access to local restaurants and food outlets, as well as connect with e-commerce platforms; they can swipe through the different choices hassle-free.
The same technology is used to provide regular food and delivery updates and notifications, as well as giving users the chance to make direct reservations and bookings to visit nearby restaurants. This extends to online e-commerce shopping and delivery as well. Without the need to exit the platform, Huawei users can order a taxi to the restaurant, use the same payment details and even follow direct guidance on restaurant entrances to help to navigate to the exact, accurate location. Compared with the traditional GPS positioning error of 10 metres, Huawei Assistance can achieve a positioning error margin of only one metre.
The opportunities don't end there, however, as Huawei's ML Kit can also be integrated to help quickly identify online coupons for those wishing to order from their favourite restaurants. Beyond the world of food delivery and eating out, Huawei Assistance also helps other lifestyle vendors to grow their business through technology. Huawei assistant can even recommend flights and hotels to its users, covering travel, lifestyle, entertainment, work and family scenarios.
Huawei technology helps businesses champion new technology to succeed
Over the next few years, the need for on-demand Home Services will continue to grow, offering the businesses that are able to adapt great potential and opportunities.
In order to succeed, businesses who first focus on scale and efficiency will take the lead, clearly able to demonstrate their adaptations to their existing customer base as well as reaching new individuals. The accelerated change seen throughout 2020 has shown this, how those businesses able to adapt to the change in consumer lifestyle can thrive.
As the online lifestyle and food delivery industry continues to grow, Huawei is committed to helping businesses of all shapes and sizes keep up with the ongoing changes in the sector and champion new technology to succeed in today's progressively online world.
Gavin Kinghall Were, VP, Global Head of BD Solutions at Huawei, discussed the topic in detail during Huawei's #EmpowerInnovations masterclass, 'Empowering lifestyle, with Huawei AppGallery' on 3 December, as part of the annual Web Summit tech conference. The session can be viewed here: https://consumer.huawei.com/en/partners/videolibrary/lifestyle-websummit/