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10 Facts About the Future Of The Subscription Economy

Matthew Lekoutovich
 - 
July 15, 2022

The subscription model is being adopted in droves by companies thanks to trailblazers like Netflix, Adobe, and Dollar Shave Club. 

There are plenty of benefits to subscription offers for companies, including more predictable cash flow, better relationships with customers, and a greater ability to cater to customer needs. These benefits are so obvious that subscriptions have outgrown traditionally subscription based industries such as SAAS and e-commerce. 

Subscriptions are now available in surprising industries such as airlines, automobiles, and even banking. These pivots come from the explosive growth subscription companies saw during the height of the pandemic. 

Subscriptions have become an integral part of our spending habits. Let's start looking into the future with these ten stats to stay on top of the subscription industry.

1. In The Next Decade Subscription Market Will Grow to 1.3 trillion

If you’re doing the math, that ends up being nearly 6x growth in less than a decade. With numbers like that, it’s hard to argue with the fact that subscription services are less of the new frontier for eCommerce organizations, and more like the proven, established frontier. 

2. 78% of international adults currently have subscription services.

This number is up from 71% in 2018. Which just goes to show that while the growth of the industry overall has surely slowed, it hasn’t halted completely and there is still an audience of 

subscribers out there looking for new brands to make a splash.

3. 75% of respondents believe that in the future, people will subscribe to more services and own less physical “stuff”.

Of course, the need for this so-called physical “stuff” is not going to disappear overnight. But it is important for eCommerce organizations to take note of this shift. As the demand for subscription services continues to increase, the market will expand as well. To really make your mark on the subscription industry, you’ll want to consider beginning to craft your subscription model strategy sooner rather than later.

4. Subscription businesses have consistently grown 5-8x faster than traditional businesses.

Just another reminder that there is room for everyone in the future. However, if you’re looking for increased scalability then all roads lead to subscription services being your ticket to growth in the upcoming years.

5. 64% of respondents say that they feel more connected to companies with whom they have a direct subscription experience versus companies whose products they simply purchase as one-off transactions.

Ahh, that coveted consumer connection. Without it, you’ll have a harder time boosting your customer retention rates and may find yourself struggling to reach new audiences. Subscription services offer a streamlined response to this potential problem by having customer retention as a primary component of their innate structure.

6. By 2022, 53% of all software revenue will be generated from a subscription model.

To pivot away from the eCommerce sector real quick— allow me to quickly highlight the full power of subscription models by pointing out that even the software and tech industry is embracing subscription models with 53% of all software revenue projected to be generated from subscriptions by the end of this year. Which industry do you think will embrace subscriptions next?

7. 70% of business leaders say subscription business models will be key to their prospects in the years ahead.

Don’t mind me, just another stat reiterating the importance of pivoting to a subscription model. Of course, the popular choice isn’t always necessarily the best one for your organization. You shouldn’t transform your business into a subscription service just because there is a flood of statistics and projects telling you to do so. Instead, take the time to determine if a subscription model is the right one for your organization. But hey, it doesn’t hurt to know that if you do decide to incorporate a subscription model you will be in the good company of 70% of business leaders.

8. 28% of subscribers said that a personalized experience was the most important reason for continuing to subscribe.

Marketing strategists know that personalization is a coveted aspect of every corner of the ecommerce world. From personalized customer support to personalized marketing to a post-purchase customer experience tailored to the shopping and behavior patterns of customers, personalization is everywhere— and with good reason. (Bonus statistic incoming!) After all, 80% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase from a brand that provides personalized experiences.

9. In the U.S, 42% of men and 28% of women have 3 or more subscriptions.

While it’s true that the majority of subscribers only have 1 primary subscription service that they pay for each month, it’s important to note that nearly half of the men and over a quarter of the women in the U.S. are juggling 3 or more subscriptions. This just goes to show that there is room for everyone in this ever-expanding industry.

10. The subscription industry is a market estimated to be worth over $240 billion globally by 2022. 

Last but certainly not least, the most influential projection of all. Following the monumental boost in the industry I mentioned earlier, it comes as no surprise that as we look to the future the subscription economy is projected to be worth over $240 globally by 2022. That’s quite a chunk of change that shouldn't be ignored by any brand looking to grow their awareness in the upcoming years.

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