August 21, 2014
Four in Five Consumers Cite Privacy Concerns for Wearable Tech Adoption, According to 2014 State of the Internet of Things Study from Accenture Interactive
Study reveals incentives are key for alleviating consumer privacy concerns; consumers willing to give up personal data to save money
CHICAGO; August 21, 2014 – Eighty percent of consumers have privacy concerns with wearable Internet of Things (IoT) connected technologies, according to the 2014 State of the Internet of Things Study. But half of those same consumers said they would be willing to share personal data collected by such devices with third-party retailers when presented with compensation such as a coupon or discount.
The study was conducted by Acquity Group, a leading Brand eCommerce® and digital marketing agency, now part of Accenture Interactive.
“Our data reveals a gap in consumers’ fears of data privacy and their actual purchasing behavior,” said Jay Dettling, president of Acquity Group. “To capitalize on these opportunities, companies should focus on specific benefits that sharing data will deliver to consumers.”
Incentives Make Sharing Wearable Data More Palatable
Only 9 percent of consumers stated they would share data with brands for free. But that percentage dramatically increases when consumers are presented with a coupon or discount in exchange for sharing data.
Specifically, consumers are most willing to share wearable data for:
- Coupons and discounts based on their lifestyles (28 percent)
- Information on better workouts to reach their goals (22 percent)
- Information on the best foods to eat to reach their goals (22 percent)
- Coupons for fitness gear (19 percent)
The study also revealed that many consumers are willing to share data from a wearable device with a third party: 53 percent of consumers were willing to share data with doctors, 27 percent with family, and 17 percent with friends.
Less than 40 percent of consumers wouldn’t share data with anyone.
It’s clear that while couponing makes consumers more likely to share personal data, there’s still a great deal of uncertainty around the security of these connected devices. Companies will have to address consumers’ very real security concerns before any widespread adoption can take root.
Consumers Willing To Pay a Premium for Beneficial Connected Features
Not only are consumers open to sharing certain in-home device data, but they believe several features for which they’d have to share data would be beneficial – and would even be willing to pay a premium in some cases.
The features consumers believe would be most beneficial in connected in-home novelty technology, such as smart refrigerators, are:
- Location-based automatic coupons or offers on their mobile device for frequently purchased foods (86 percent)
- Recipes on their mobile device for food they can make from the products in their refrigerator (85 percent)
- Information on the least expensive places to purchase favorite products (82 percent)
Thirty-three percent of consumers are even willing to watch targeted commercials on their devices for additional coupons.
The features consumers believe would be most beneficial in in-home safety technology, such as smoke or carbon monoxide (CO) detectors, are:
- Accurate measures of CO levels in the home (95 percent)
- Notifications on my smartphone if a fire or CO issue arises while away from the home (93 percent)
- Automatic turn off of the furnace if there are increased levels of CO (85 percent)
While cost is a consideration, consumers are comparatively less worried about price than other factors, especially when it comes to safety over novelty:
- 83 percent of consumers would pay a premium for a smart smoke alarm, equipped with features such as clear emergency instructions and Wi-Fi capabilities
- 59 percent of consumers would pay a premium for a smart refrigerator, equipped with features such as a LCD screen showing food quantity and expiration date
- Only 22 percent express strong concerns about the price of these IoT devices
“As the connected technology opportunities within the market continue to grow, it’s important for businesses to understand ways to overcome barriers to adoption and create digital device strategies,” added Dettling. “Our study demonstrates the importance of a value-added user experience. Brands that do not evolve strategies to mirror consumer expectations will fall short and miss major revenue opportunities moving forward. While incentives are part of the answer, companies must create an understanding among consumers that their devices and personal data are well-protected from security threats – this is where firms can most effectively differentiate their business models.”
The Acquity Group 2014 State of the Internet of Things Study surveyed more than 2,000 consumers across the United States to gain insight into their preferences for and barriers against use of the Internet of Things. The survey analyzed consumer behavior across a variety of areas, including current adoption, perception, barriers and plans for future adoption. Results were broken down based on demographics, including age, gender and location. As a leading provider of digital marketing, interactive design, and eCommerce solutions, Acquity Group works with some of the world’s largest brands to improve the user experience, leading to increased revenue and loyalty. Acquity Group completed this survey to help executives in B2Ccompanies gain a better understanding of how consumers view IoT and connected technologies, as well as future plans for adoption.
About Accenture Interactive
Accenture Interactive helps the world’s leading brands delight their customers and drive superior marketing performance across the full multichannel customer experience. As part of Accenture Digital, Accenture Interactive works with over 23,000 Accenture professionals dedicated to serving marketing and digital clients to offer integrated, industrialized and industry-driven digital transformation and marketing services. Follow @AccentureSocial or visit accenture.com/interactive.
Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company, with approximately 293,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries. Combining unparalleled experience, comprehensive capabilities across all industries and business functions, and extensive research on the world’s most successful companies, Accenture collaborates with clients to help them become high-performance businesses and governments. The company generated net revenues of US$28.6 billion for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2013. Its home page is www.accenture.com.
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