Women more anxious about cost-of-living than men, report finds

Australian women are feeling more anxious and worried than their male counterparts about the current cost-of-living crisis, driven by salary and mental factors, an M&C Saatchi report found.

The study titled ‘Prioritisation, planning and promos’ found that more than a third (36%) of women feel anxious, surpassing the 20% of men who responded with the same concern.

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Groceries, mortgage and power bills are the categories to which respondents of both genders displayed the most concerns. However, female respondents are overall more concerned about all categories.

As a result, 84% of females (versus 72% of males) already state they’re curbing general expenditure and 85% will continue doing so in the next three months.

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The report identified the national gender pay gap (13.3%) and women carrying the mental load for many purchase decisions on a daily basis as the key reasons for the gender differences in the response.

Emily Taylor, chief strategy officer at M&C Saatchi Group, said: “We have seen our clients take action in this cost of living crisis to really help their customers, including innovations and utility to better plan their spending.

“To stay in a customer’s consideration phase, brands need to be adapting to new behaviours; less sporadic spend and more intentional, conscious consumption.”

Other key shopping trends:

  • going deeper into their subscriptions: cancelling streaming services they don’t need but looking deeper into the archives of the ones that they are retaining. 26% of respondents will cancel one or more pay tv/streaming subscriptions in the next three to six months.
  • open to substitution: customers are likely to try new brands or products, whether that be new retailers (e.g. supermarkets) or buying cheaper substitute brands.
  • using loyalty programs more: 24% of people are using loyalty program memberships more frequently.
  • squeezing the last drop: 91% are shopping less frequently for makeup and skincare and 90% are making products last longer.
  • becoming more planned: there is less spontaneity with items off the shopping list.
  • hunting for deals: consumers are spending more time researching products and seeking discounts. Even Gen Z are seeking discounts and coupons and sharing them with a sense of pride with their networks.
M&C Saatchi Group Utilised Dynata Global Australian Research Panel and delivered the survey via an online panel. Survey was fielded on the following dates:
● Wave 1: 30th September 22′ – 13th October 22′ n=2,100
● Wave 2: 11th May 23′ – 24th May 23′ n=2,086
Each wave is identical in age gender and state and has been weighted to match ABS Australian Demographics.

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