Consumer Trends: Subscription Boxes and How to Secure Serial Spend

How do the behaviours of subscribers set them apart from the rest of the population? What are their keenest interests? And which brands resonate most with them? This Consumer Index takes an in-depth look at this group, to better understand what makes them tick, and how brands can successfully target them.

The Attest Consumer Trends Reports are in-depth explorations of a predefined consumer group. Consumers who self-identify with the behaviours or demographic categories of this group are surveyed and asked about their market-specific views, and consumer habits more generally. 

The preferred brands, influencers and social media platforms, as well as their priorities when considering and making purchases are all interrogated in a consistent format within each Consumer Trends Report. 

This report includes: 

  • Behaviours and interests of subscribers, specifically their sentiments towards postal subscription services
  • Social media and shopping habits of this consumer groups, across all markets
  • Market and brand awareness
  • Key takeaways for brands looking to target this unique segment of the market

Top 10 subscription services according to current subscribers: 

  1. Graze
  2. Birch Box
  3. HelloFresh
  5. Gousto
  6. Dollar Shave Club
  7. Beauty Box
  8. Simply Cook
  9. LootCrate
  10. Beer52

Key Findings: 

Despite its two-decade history, the subscription service industry has boomed in just the last few years. Only 22.7% of subscribers have been using postal subscription services for over three years, and the majority (25%) signed up to their first delivery service just one to two years ago.

The variety of subscription boxes on offer, everything from craft gin to scented candles, is vast, matching the variety of interests of the wider population. And yet, within the top 10 most popular subscription brands only four sectors (food, drink, beauty and grooming) were represented, indicating that there’s still room for the more niche services to grow and become the norm to the same extent as having healthy snacks delivered through the letterbox is normal.

The spread across sectors is surprisingly diverse, despite the apparent dominance of food services within the top 10. In fact, the most popular product type to be delivered by subscription services is tied at 19%, between books & magazines and clothing & shoes.

Subscribers are united in their preference for digital media channels, and their use of social media, with online sources cropping up as the place subscribers like to see adverts and where they turn for advice on subscription services.

A free trial appears to be a sure fire way to secure custom, with 17.6% of active subscribers seeking out free trials, and 20.5% tempted to try new services because of free trials. As long as your brand follows up with a high quality product, you could well secure a slice of the 87.1% of the population who continued to pay for their subscriptions following a free trial.

We also asked for the products consumers wish they could receive by postal service that they don’t believe are currently offered. While clothes and groceries were ranked in first and second spots, beauty brands currently operating in the space might wish to be aware that 3.7% of consumers wish they had access to beauty and make up deliveries.

3Beauty products2.0%
Joint 5thHealth essentials1.2%
Joint 5thAlcohol1.2%
Joint 8thMedication0.9%
Joint 8thBaby products0.9%
Joint 8thSoft drinks0.9%


Content Team 

Our in-house marketing team is always scouring the market for the next big thing. This piece has been lovingly crafted by one of our team members. Attest's platform makes gathering consumer data as simple and actionable as possible.

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