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The Subscription Leak: Most Shoppers Cancel Their Subscriptions Within a Year

The Subscription Leak: Most Shoppers Cancel Their Subscriptions Within a Year

It’s one of the most lucrative goals – perhaps even the holy grail – of ecommerce. Subscription models are much in demand by brands and retailers as the benefits of guaranteed consistent sales are too good to overlook.

But – and it’s a big but – the problem is that despite the model being highly sought after, most companies that have implemented it are having issues with retaining their customers.

The Subscription Leak: Most Shoppers Cancel Their Subscriptions Within a YearIn just one study alone from the UK, a whopping 98% of consumers actually cancel their product and services subscriptions within one year.

Over the last couple of years, subscription ecommerce is a quickly-expanding market. When we think of those companies that have done it right, we think of those like Dollar Shave Club as well as HelloFresh. Today the global subscription market is valued at around $13 billion.

So we find ourselves in a situation where the potential is massive yet the model is massively leaking shoppers. From the same study, it found that just 1 in 50 consumers hold onto a subscription for more than 12 months.

What’s more, the average consumer cancels their subscription after 5.3 months. So there is a lot of work to be done.

When broken down into age groups, shoppers that are over 55 are the most loyal to brands, being most likely to maintain a subscription for more than 12 months.

But why are consumers cancelling their subscriptions?

For something as broad as the subscription market there are multiple reasons for why most consumers cancel their subscriptions. But at this moment in time, a large contributing factor is likely the pandemic.

That’s because during the pandemic, many of us began to sign up for different products and services given that almost all stores had to be closed. Yet with stores now reopening, we don’t necessarily need as many subscription services any longer.

Doing more

The Subscription Leak: Most Shoppers Cancel Their Subscriptions Within a YearBrands and retailers simply need to do more to win over customers and keep them engaged. The research found that just over half of consumers (52%) either have a monthly subscription or are planning to buy a monthly subscription for products.

Meanwhile, 48% of consumers believe that subscription services are either too expensive or poor value for money. In addition, 18% of consumers canceled their subscription as soon as the free trial finished.

“Subscription services have proven to be a very popular way of shopping throughout the lockdowns of the past year,” said Pamela Danzinger, a shopping expert, “but it’s clear that brands need to do more to keep shoppers engaged as things open up again.”

“Consumers ­– particularly younger generations – will not continue paying for a subscription that isn’t serving their needs.”

PS: ArganoStudios is one of the world’s leading digital products & experiences development & strategy teams. Contact us to see how we can work together.

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