Category Archives: Consumer insight

What is really driving sales of water-efficient bathroom products?


It would appear that once behind the bathroom door, consumers care less about the impact their bathroom habits are having on the planet and more about the impact they are having on their wallet.

Water efficiency as a consumer purchase influencer is one of the areas investigated in the recent two-part consumer insight research carried out by Trend-Monitor in partnership with the Bathroom Manufacturers Association.

The first part of the study, which looked at bathroom purchasing trends, found that for up to 80% of bathroom consumers water efficiency was a key purchase influencer.   However, the results of the second part of the research, which examined bathroom habits and behaviours  produced key findings that offer valuable insights into UK consumer behaviour when it comes to water usage and food for thought for bathroom manufacturers.

The second study, aptly named‘ Behind the Bathroom Door’ – followed 50 householders for seven days to track their bathroom habits, and assess their use of bathroom products and attitudes to water efficiency.  Key findings from the research showed that when it comes to bathrooms, consumers primarily want functionality, cleanliness and space.   

The findings also demonstrated that our daily bathroom routines are rigid and rarely change.  And it is the entrenched nature of these activities that is worth noting as this is resulting in some very wasteful habits when it comes to water usage.  

For example, a typical shower uses on average 50 litres of water1, and the study found that most people shower once a day, and that the average showering time is approximately 10 minutes. However, 22% of respondents spent over 15 minutes in the shower, and almost 60% of showers are run to warm up, some for up to 5 minutes.   

When it came to tooth brushing, 25% kept the tap running throughout the whole process, while 81% left the tap running with the plug out for hand washing, and 63% left the tap running and plug out while washing their faces. The majority of those who prefer to take a bath said they fill it as deep as possible – a typical bath can take up to 115 litres to fill2.

When asked to list their priorities from one to 10 when purchasing bathroom items, most respondents indicated their first priority was that products should be functional, second was that they should be easy to clean, and third was their design quality. The fact that products should be water efficient came low down the list at number eight, and bottom of the list was that products should be from a well-known brand.

So what does this mean for bathroom manufacturers, and specifically, what are the implications for the marketing messages that they need to be conveying to consumers?

With the functionality of products being the top priority for 54% of respondents, consumers clearly need to be reassured by manufacturers that water-efficient products are also effective. Marketing messages and POS material need to convey that water-efficient showers and basin taps can also offer a powerful washing experience, and that the toilets have an effective dual flush.

However, there is another strand to this, and that is the fact that water efficiency saves consumers money. Water metering is now compulsory on new buildings3, and the average water bill per household is almost £400 per year4

The Trend-Monitor Bathroom Purchasing Trends report found that over half the respondents had a water meter fitted at their home, and that those with water meters placed more importance on the water efficiency of products than those without. 

With the proliferation of water meters, the demand for water-efficient products looks set to increase as consumers seek to make savings, however, it was concerning to note that over 40% of bathroom product consumers said, at the point of purchase, they were not made aware of the amount of water individual products will use.

When it comes to product development, manufacturers must continue to focus on high-performing water-efficient products. But is it time manufacturers set about educating consumers regarding the amount of money their wasteful habits are actually costing them?


Additional Sources



Add to Project(0)

Bathroom Purchasing Trends, Consumer Insight Report 2018


Welcome to the 2018 TREND-MONITOR consumer insight report into bathroom purchasing trends.

For this purposes of this research, TREND-MONITOR was pleased to partner with The Bathroom Manufacturers’ Association, an independent forum for bathroom manufacturers trading in the UK.  This partnership gave the association’s 60+ members the opportunity to contribute to the research structure, resulting in a focused piece of industry research that is directly relevant to manufacturers and retailers in this diverse market sector.

Alongside this consumer insight research, a second study called ‘Behind the Bathroom Door’ featured a 7-day bathroom habits and routines diary, which assessed participants’ water usage within privacy of their own bathroom.

The insight gained from these two studies answers important questions in terms of consumer requirements for their bathroom, how bathroom products are being used in the home, attitudes to water efficiency, and how this in turn influences consumer purchase behaviour for new bathroom products.

“This insight into consumer behaviour provides valuable information for our members and the bathroom industry.

Finding ways to save water and energy has never been more important and the results of this survey can influence future product development to help achieve this aim.

The surveys also show that compliance is an issue that needs to be addressed. Consumers are interested in having more information about products and have indicated that knowing a product was energy efficient would positively influence their buying decision. 

This gives us all in the industry an opportunity to respond and promote products that display the Water Label.”

Yvonne Orgill, CEO, Bathroom Manufacturers Association


The research was undertaken via an online consumer survey with a nationally representative sample of UK householders who had purchased a complete new bathroom or cloakroom within the past two years.

The survey consisted of 42 multi-choice questions, plus qualifying and status questions and was conducted online during May 2018, targeting a response rate of 500+ respondents.


Key Findings

1. Additional Bathrooms & Cloakrooms

Households adding new additional bathrooms and cloakrooms (as opposed to replacing existing rooms) account for 10% of new bathroom/cloakroom installations. Half of these additional bathrooms/cloakrooms are being fitted for practical reasons such as mobility or disability issues, or to accommodate a large or extended family

2. Research Goes Off-Line

89% of householders undertake some kind of research prior to purchasing their new kitchen, with researching via a ‘bricks and mortar’ retail outlet being the most popular and useful research resource.

3.  Shopping Around

Householders no longer expect to be tied to one retailer for all of their bathroom products, indicated by the 54% of bathroom installations which were purchased from more than one retail outlet

4.  Space Availability

Products that make the best use of the available space are at the top of consumers wish-lists for their new bathroom, and ahead of other key purchase influencers such as quality and price.

5.  More Information Please

Sales of water efficient products are being hampered by lack of customer awareness. Up to 80% of bathroom consumers indicated that water efficiency was a key purchase influencer, however over 40% were not made aware of the amount of water individual products will use.



List of Charts

Chart 1: Type of Bathroom Fitted
Chart 2: Reason for Replacing Existing Bathroom/Cloakroom
Chart 3: Location of Additional Bathroom/Cloakroom
Chart 4: Total Bathroom/Cloakroom Budget
Chart 5: Budget by Bathroom Type
Chart 6: Bathroom Style by Budget
Chart 7: Research Breakdown by Type
Chart 8: Most Useful Research Undertaken Prior to Purchase
Chart 9: Choice of Retailer
Chart 10: Influential Factors in Choice of Retailer
Chart 11: Choosing a Bathroom/Cloakroom Fitter
Chart 12: Additional Items Purchased for the Bathroom
Chart 13: Choice of Shower Control
Chart 14: Influential Factors in Choice of Shower Control
Chart 15: Awareness Factors when choosing Shower Control
Chart 16: Choice of Shower Tray
Chart 17: Influential Factors in Choice of Shower Tray
Chart 18: Awareness Factors when Choosing a Shower Tray
Chart 19: Choice of Shower Enclosure
Chart 20: Influential Factors in Choice of Shower Enclosure
Chart 21: Awareness Factors when Choosing a Shower Enclosure
Chart 22: Choice of Bath
Chart 23: Influential Factors in Choice of Bath
Chart 24: Awareness Factors when Choosing a Bath
Chart 25: Influential Factors in Choice of Taps
Chart 27: Awareness Factors when choosing a Toilet
Chart 28: Main Influence on Choice of Products
Chart 30: Awareness of Damage Caused by Abrasive Cleaners
Chart 31: Source of Information Regarding Abrasive Cleaners

Trend-Monitor Bathroom category Insight Partners,
please sign into your account to download this report.

Members of the Bathroom Manufacturers Association,
please see email from the BMA containing details on how to download this report 

Add to Project(0)

Kitchen Purchasing Trends, Consumer Insight Report 2018


Welcome to the 2018 TREND-MONITOR consumer insight report into kitchen purchasing trends.

If you are a Kitchen category Insight Partner, this report will automatically be added to your account

Kitchen category Insight Partners only

As the kitchen continues to move from a utilitarian area to the entertainment and leisure hub of the home, the decisions driving a new kitchen installation become more complicated as the kitchen space is forced to accommodate an often diverse range of activities.

Cooking is now a lifestyle statement, fuelled by TV cookery programs, the restaurant trade and overseas travel, creating the need for even more kitchen space, when in fact the kitchens in our new-build homes now are 13% smaller than they were in the 1960’s.

With the explosion of the internet as a research tool and the growth of online influencers, the balance of power has moved from the retail outlets and into the hands of the consumer who, armed with their tablet or smartphone, has access to any number of design ideas, brands, products and retail outlets.

This report unravels how these new savvy consumers negotiate the purchase of a complete new kitchen. Starting by investigating the motivations behind the decision to replace an existing kitchen, moving onto research undertaken prior to purchase and the effectiveness of this research, the planning methods used, plus the anticipated and actual kitchen budget. We look at how the retail outlet is chosen, highlighting the barriers and influences to sales throughout the consumer journey, and finishing by understanding how the whole process could be improved.

The data for this research was collected via an online survey which was live during August 2018.  The survey was completed by a nationally representative sample of 503 UK householders who had installed a complete new kitchen within the past two years.

Key Findings

 1. Aesthetics versus Practicalities
The decision to replace an existing kitchen is driven more by aesthetics than practicalities, with 60% of new kitchen installations being undertaken because the current kitchen is ‘outdated’.

Charts from Trend-Monitor Interactive

2. Seeking Design Inspiration
89% of householders undertake some kind of research prior to purchasing their new kitchen, with ‘design inspiration’ being their primary research intent.


Charts from Trend-Monitor Interactive

3. Planning It Themselves
1 in 4 new kitchen installations are planned by the householder  themselves rather than using an external planning service. This includes 5% of new kitchens which keep the same layout as before.

Charts from Trend-Monitor Interactive

4. Over Budget
One third of householders go over the budget they originally set for themselves, with over a quarter of householders finding ‘keeping within a budget’ the most difficult aspect of installing a new kitchen.

Charts from Trend-Monitor Interactive

5. Shopping Around
Householders are shopping around when buying their kitchens, with less than half of householders buying everything from the same retail outlet

Charts from Trend-Monitor Interactive


Key Findings
Survey Respondents
UK Kitchen Market
Section One – Motivating Factors
Section Two – Research Prior to Purchase
Section Three – Planning and Design
Section Four – Kitchen Budget
Section Five – Kitchen  Units
Section Six – Choice of Retail Outlet – Units
Section Seven – Kitchen Worktop
Section Eight – Kitchen Appliances
Section Nine – Kitchen Lighting
Section Ten – Kitchen Installation

List of Charts

Chart 1 – Purchase Triggers
Chart 2 – Previous Kitchen Dislikes
Chart 3 – Kitchen Replacement Cycle
Chart 4 – Undertaking Research
Chart 5 – Initial Intent when Researching
Chart 6 – All Research Resources Used
Chart 7 – Most Useful Research
Chart 8 – Using a Planning Service
Chart 9 – Kitchen Budget
Chart 10 – Anticipated Budget
Chart 11 – Choice of Retail Outlet – Units
Chart 12 – Reason for Choice of Units Retailer
Chart 13 – Choice of Retail Outlet – Worktops
Chart 14 – Kitchen Appliances Included
Chart 15 – Choice of Retail Outlet – Appliances
Chart 16 – Reasons for Choice of Appliance Retailer
Chart 17 – Choosing a Kitchen Fitter
Chart 18 – Difficult Aspects of Kitchen Installation

If you are a Kitchen category Insight Partner, this report will automatically be added to your account

Add to Project(0)

Kitchen Worktop Performance Report, Consumer Insight 2018


This report investigates consumer expectations for kitchen worktops in terms of performance levels and the attributes influencing the purchase of their next kitchen worktop.

Kitchen category Insight Partners only

The growing importance of worktops in kitchen design has resulted in new materials, colours and textures coming into the market and consumers are now faced with an increasing array of worktop products to choose from.

Consumer expectations in terms of how a kitchen worktop should perform in today’s multi-functional kitchen are complex and often tied into daily habits and household circumstances rather than product knowledge or the price tag.

For this purposes of this research, TREND-MONITOR was pleased to partner with WILSONART a leading manufacturer of laminate, quartz and solid surface worktops.

This partnership has resulted in a focused piece of industry research that is directly relevant to manufacturers and retailers in this fast growing market sector and answers some important questions in terms of consumer purchase decisions, product usage and the performance versus price ratio.

This report identifies consumer needs and expectations with regards to the performance levels of worktop, assesses worktop usage within the kitchen, and evaluates the price versus performance ratio for worktops

The research collected and analysed data in order to understand four key aspects of kitchen worktops:-

• The type of worktops currently in kitchens and utility rooms
• Worktop purchase influences
• Worktop performance levels in-situ
• Attributes which influence future worktop purchases

Key Findings

  1. The popularity of laminate worktops is highlighted in this research with half of the householders surveyed having a laminate worktop in their kitchen.
  2. Over half of homeowners surveyed hadn’t  changed their worktop since moving into their current home. Laminate worktops are kept for the longest, a third are over 10 years old.
  3. 40% of homes have a separate utility room, although 14% of these utility rooms don’t accommodate a worktop.
  4. Aesthetics (colour and finish) and heat  resistance are the key purchase influences for kitchen worktops.
  5. Worktop practicality is more important than price when choosing a new worktop, with 3/4 of householders prepared to pay more for greater worktop practicality.


The research was undertaken via an online consumer survey with a representative sample of UK householders.

The survey was conducted online during April 2018 and targeted a response rate of 1000+ respondents.

The survey consisted of 34 multi-choice questions, plus qualifying and status questions

For the purposes of the research, the different worktop types are categorised as follows:-
– Laminate
– Compact Laminate e.g. Zenith
– Solid Wood
– Solid Surface e.g. Corian
– Quartz e.g. Silestone
– Granite
– Porcelain e.g. Neolith*

If you are a Kitchen category Insight Partner, this report will automatically be added to your account

Add to Project(0)

Introducing Trend-Monitor Interactive


Our new Interactive Insight Partner Plan is about to go live.

Subscribers to the Interactive Insight Partner plan are able to interrogate and analyse the data behind our consumer insight surveys to gain specific insights for their brand.

This video explains Trend-Monitor Interactive in more detail

The data from our consumer insight survey is broken down into a series of online dashboards which focus on the different aspects of the research and have a number of ways to filter and analyse the relevant data.

Track the purchase journey for your target market from their purchase motivations, their research resources prior to purchase, through to their choice of retail outlet.  Find out why they chose one retail outlet type over another.  Investigate the factors which influence product choice, filtered by age grouping, gender, household structure, income or budget, and build up a demographic profile for each product category.

Filter and compare the data, before downloading and embedding charts into your marketing plans and presentations


Find out more about Trend-Monitor Interactive >

Add to Project(0)

Kitchen Purchase Behaviour, Consumer Insight Report 2016

This consumer insight report looks at the motivating factors behind the decision to purchase a new kitchen, investigating multi-family households, the ageing demographic, flexible working conditions, the space available, even the TV programmes we watch, to understand how these influence the way in which we use our kitchen space.


This research takes a step back and starts from before the actual purchase process in order to explore the way UK homeowners use their kitchens; how they cook, shop for groceries, socialise and relax. It investigates how family circumstances and household demographics, multi-functional space issues and emerging smart technologies can impact on how kitchens are planned and which products are purchased.

The results of this research have enabled us to produce 6 different kitchen consumer profiles, which will aid manufacturers and retailers of kitchen products in identifying their target market and creating a structured approach to product development and marketing communications.

The report gives a fascinating insight into people’s diverse requirements for their individual kitchens and highlight a number of opportunities for innovation and growth for kitchen product brands.

Key Findings

  • Spending is back on the agenda with homeowners showing a willingness to invest in a new kitchen because they are not prepared to wait any longer for a new one
  • Luxury goes mainstream as what were previously considered high-ticket appliances rise steeply in popularity
  • Kitchens are not as social as we would like with homeowners complaining that their new kitchens don’t provide enough space to entertain.
  • Lack of space continues to be the main issue with new kitchens and although there many be opportunities to add an extension or create an open plan space, making the best use of storage and work surfaces is more important for many new kitchens
  • Although the smart kitchen is a trend that has grown significantly over the past 3 years, many homeowners are still failing to understand how the technology will work in their own homes.

kitchen consumer trends

The 2018 edition of this report is now available 
Click here to view>

Also available from December 2018 – Kitchen Behaviours and Product Usage 2018

If you are a Kitchen Category Insight Partner, these reports will automatically be added to your account

Add to Project(0)

Bathroom Purchase Behaviour, Consumer Insight Report 2017

This bathroom industry report investigates the purchase of a new complete bathroom and the key influences on consumers as they progress through the purchase process, such as budget, family circumstances, brand awareness, research methods and advice sources.  The report reveals how consumers choose their suppliers, how they plan and design their new bathroom and how they find a bathroom fitter.

Download Full Report Now

Bathroom Category Insight Partners only


The report has had the benefit of a 1285-strong respondent base which was accessed via a collaboration with the online bathroom inspiration platform Foam & Bubbles.  The respondents, all UK consumer-homeowners, have all recently fitted a complete new bathroom, or are actively planning a complete new bathroom for installation in the near future, resulting in a highly-engaged survey audience.

“Direct access to people who are actively engaged in the purchase of a new bathroom has enabled Trend-Monitor to obtain high-level insights into the purchase process. The result is an invaluable resource for bathroom brands, bathroom retailers and industry professionals, providing a focus and structure for new product development and customer engagement programmes”.
Jane Blakeborough, Research Director, Trend-Monitor Ltd

“This report will allow bathroom brands and other interested parties to have a deeper and more insightful knowledge of the bathroom purchase and replacement processes, outlining motivations and demographic patterns, with the result that we will have a deeper understanding of the way consumers refurbish their bathrooms today – and in the future”.
Avinash Doshi, Founder and CEO, Foam & Bubbles

Key findings from the research include:-

  1. Brand awareness within the bathroom market remains low, clearly illustrated by the 90% of survey respondents who were unable to name any of the brands they had used or were planning to use in their new bathroom.  Brand awareness does however increase slightly as the bathroom budget increases to the point where more research is done online, and more purchases are made via local bathroom showrooms instead of DIY and retail chains.
  2. Research prior to purchase continues to move online over the past year with 45% more people researching via online bathroom inspiration websites, in particular for the higher-budget bathrooms.  46% more people are researching via e-commerce websites and these tend to be focused on the lower-budget bathrooms.
  3. The design services offered by bathroom retailers and installers have a relatively low uptake with a third of homeowners choosing to plan their new bathroom themselves and a further 29% of new bathrooms keeping the same layout as before.
    Interestingly 24% of those homeowners who plan their own bathroom choose to do so on paper, compared to only 10% who use an online design tool.
  4. Water saving features have recently increased in importance within the bathroom purchase process.  This is shown by people currently in the planning stage of their bathroom installation being twice as likely to consider water-saving features to be important when purchasing a bathroom product than those who have already installed their bathroom.
  5. The influence of the bathroom fitter on the modern-day bathroom is evident throughout the whole bathroom installation process, however consumers sourcing a bathroom fitter for their new bathroom are still doing it the traditional way – by personal recommendation.    Bathroom fitters are over twice as likely to be appointed based on a recommendation from a family member or friend than any other sourcing method.

Key Findings
About the Survey Respondents
UK Bathroom Market Overview
Section One: Motivating Factors
Section Two: Research Prior Purchase
Section Three: Design and Planning
Section Four: Personalising the Bathroom
Section Five: Brand Awareness
Section Six: Water Saving in the Bathroom
Section Seven: Choice of Purchase Outlet
Section Eight: The Influence of the Bathroom Fitter
Section Nine: Bathroom Style
Section Ten: How we use our Bathrooms
Appendix one: Methodology

Foam & Bubbles brand partners have access to this report as part of their partnership agreement with Foam & Bubbles

Find out more about Foam & Bubbles brand partners here


The next Bathroom Purchase Behaviour report will be published in June 2018

If you are one of our Bathroom Category Insight Partners, this report will be automatically added to your account

Add to Project(1)