Women control 32% of the world's wealth, and they are adding $5 trillion to the wealth pool globally every year, according to a 2020 study by BCG. By 2023, the Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) at which women accumulate wealth will accelerate from 6.1% to 7.2%.
In India as well, women have become an economic force. There are several reasons for this upward spiral. Today, more women are making the shift to paid labour markets, either by participating in the organised workforce or self-employment. Financial literacy is also on the rise as more women are now committed to expanding their financial knowledge to be able to take saving and investing decisions by themselves. They are empowered, independent, a force to reckon with and leading from the front.
To acknowledge and support women, brands across different industries have been rolling out beneficial products and services that celebrate their achievements. In this endeavour, banks are attracting women with propositions that motivate them further in crossing milestones.
However, women consumers are driven by unique needs and priorities, and it is in the best interest of the market to customise financial products accordingly. Here's a quick look at how women consumers engage differently around their financial goals and how market innovations are responding with insight.
Catering to Diverse Profiles
Traditionally, banks have offered unique products to certain strata of women consumers. Typically, this would be corporate women with disposable incomes, who fall into specific income brackets. However, today, certain banks are taking a more inclusive route and tapping the potential of women consumers of a wide range of profiles.
For instance, Yes Bank's Yes Essence is offering unique products to a wider range of women - homemakers, salaried professionals and, an emerging consumer, the senior woman. Besides celebrating women, the bank also recognises the true potential of a diverse set of women as wealth creators. This kind of push will pave the way for women to grow their wealth by leaps and bounds and become active contributors to the SHEconomy. For example, while senior women consumers tend already to have accumulated a significant amount of wealth, they continue to engage with spending, saving and investing. Through Yes Essence, they can make use of tailor-made products and services, enhanced with perks and benefits, and continue to lead the life they want.
Perks and Benefits
The features of women-first products vary based on the emerging lifestyle trends among women consumers. For example, fee waiver on Demat and trading accounts is a growing trend, as it incentivises more women consumers to explore the world of investing. The percentage of women investors engaging in mutual funds and equity markets is on the rise.
As more women prioritise their emotional and physical well-being, health packages are also on offer. Another interesting feature is complimentary account opening for children, which allows women to start saving for their child’s needs early on.
Tapping Spending Potential
It's a fact that women consumers spend more time making key buying decisions every day for themselves and their families - from household items to services. Having already inculcated the discipline needed to make smart economic decisions, every day, women make excellent consumers for the debit and credit economy.
Recognising this trend, women-first financial products are rewarding women consumers with unique incentives such as shopping offers on debit cards, redeemable reward points and extended limits. The Yes Essence proposition is among the most recent to offer this as a way to celebrate feats accomplished by women.
Supporting Wealth Creation Goals
Traditionally, women have been known to excel in the art of saving. However, as more and more women generate incomes, they are able to increase savings and holistically look at wealth creation.
While the stock markets are definitely an attractive bastion, women continue to prioritise investment in traditional, risk-free options such as fixed deposits. Women-focused products tend to offer higher interest rates on fixed deposits to women consumers. Wealth and succession-planning advisory is also another feature that women consumers can take advantage of to help smoothen their journey to financial freedom.
Preferential Pricing on Loans
Some of the key reasons women take loans are starting a business, paying for children's education, and buying a new home. Yet, the loan market still remains focused on male consumers. The good news is that emerging women-focused products feature women-friendly loans as a key offering to support women in meeting their life goals. This is a phenomenal trend because all the statistics point towards the fact that women loan consumers fare better than male loan consumers when it comes to loan repayment.
The Future Is Female
As more and more women take ownership of all areas of their lives - from health and finance to education, careers, and entrepreneurship goals - financial products will also have to evolve to support their needs. By paying more attention to the needs of women consumers, the financial industry will grow more relevant to a demographic of consumers who are unstoppable.
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