In today’s marketplace consumers are looking for products custom made for them more and more often. This isn’t exactly a new trend, after all, tailors and cobblers have existed for forever and if a desire for custom products wasn’t present those professions would have been obsolete a long time ago. It does seem, however, that the want for customized products is growing consistently with the technology to customize products more easily. Since I have basically already told you that you should definitely be looking into customizing products for your customers, let’s instead look at what it is driving custom products.
Ease of Creating Storefronts
For the creative types out there it has never been easier to create a storefront or simply take commissions for small batch products that, due to their very nature, are different for every customer that buys from these storefronts. Places like Etsy allow people to create one off, custom products for customers and find someone to buy their goods. I, personally, buy a ton of one of a kind products from small stores like this because my specific niche interests sort of require that sort of thing. There aren’t a lot of mass produced fairy mummies out there after all, and the same goes for all of the folkloric based things I am deeply fascinated with. I am certainly not alone in absolutely adoring the ease for creators to come up with whatever they want and be fairly safe in assuming they can find at least one person that is interested. In this way the want for custom products doesn’t just apply to the customers, but also the creators of these products. It is very much a win-win for everyone involved.
Another huge driving force behind the uptick in customized products is 3D printing. With 3D printers becoming more and more popular, more people expect their small batch products to be customized because 3D printing makes it incredibly easy to do so. The benefits of 3D printing are massive and range from medical applications to desiring custom figures from your favorite cartoons or video games. With 3D printers becoming low enough in cost that even just curious hobbyists can get in the custom products can even take the form of the 3D models the hobbyist can download and use to print off their product themselves. Even in its current nascent stage 3D printing is allowing for a level of customization in goods that has been prohibitively expensive at best and impossible in most cases.
Environmental concerns are likely the smallest of the three points I will touch on in this post, but they are still a significant driving factor, especially in places like fashion. Many people are realizing that if they get custom clothing or shoes and spend a bit more they will last longer and won’t need to be discarded. These consumers prefer this model because it saves both money in the long run and they feel like they are doing their part to save the planet by reducing their own waste generated. They also get the bonus of custom clothing looking and feeling better than just buying a mass produced blouse at whatever traditional storefront they likely would have gone to before.
The desire for custom products is absolutely here to stay and will almost certainly only increase as the ease of creating custom products increases their availability. There are very few industries that aren’t going to see this increased desire for customized goods as the price to manufacture the custom goods continues to fall. It used to be that you had to find a good cobbler to create the perfect pair of shoes for you, but now you can find a company with an app that you use to scan your feet and then they make your perfect pair of shoes. It has never been easier for custom goods to be made, which has resulted in customers wanting custom goods more than ever before.