Australian consumers in their own words: new research from the CPRC

What does it mean to be a consumer in Australia? New research from the Consumer Policy Research Centre outlines how people across Australia describe their experiences and expectations of how business treat them.

This is a media release from The Consumer Policy Research Centre (CPRC). It was originally published on 29th June, 2022. For more information about this research, please contact report author and Policy and Program Director, Kristal Burry

Australians are facing sustained cost of living pressures; at the same time, they are engaging in increasingly complex markets with a requirement to shop around to get a good deal. The people we spoke with are aware of how unfair their relationship is with businesses – they want businesses to be fairer and kinder.

While they acknowledge the benefits they have in today’s market – convenience, speed, access to new products and services – they also describe their experiences as stressful, difficult and overwhelming.

I think there are definitely a lot of choices, but I actually like it because when I’ve worked through many different options I feel a lot more satisfied with what I’ve chosen, if that makes sense. And that’s why I like lots of choices. Living comfortably, Melbourne

There’s so much going on in life. Being a consumer – it can really make you anxious. Trying to decipher whether you’ve made the right decision. For me, especially, I’m making decision for myself and my parents. Over 50, QLD

The feeling that you’re only as good as the dollars you’re holding in your hands. Renters, under 50, SA

Speaking directly with consumers provides a better understanding of their lives, what matters to them, and the challenges they face.

We believe these insights should inform how policy makers design policies and regulations and how businesses structure their customer service or design their online presence.

Enjoy this article? Sign up to our monthly newsletter and stay up to date on the latest consumer policy news.