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On-demand is in demand

No incumbent is safe, it’s time to enhance customer experiences with lifestyle offerings


With experiences that truly resonate with customers, on-demand upstarts are winning more than the customer experience game. They are securing consumer trust, fulfilling a lifestyle promise, and stealing valuable parts of incumbents’ business.

Some established companies aren't giving up without a fight. They are building, buying or otherwise creating on-demand capabilities of their own. They aren’t just defending against the incursion of digital-first companies, they are using on-demand disruption as a catalyst for change—and a path for revenue and growth. Others would be wise to learn from their examples.


It’s an on-demand world. Customers are flocking to upstart companies that give them the convenient, simple and immediate experiences they crave, across every industry, everywhere.


Key Findings

To appreciate the significance of on-demand’s disruptive potential, one only needs to follow the money—and the speed with which it is flowing:

  • Between 2000 and 2015, venture capitalists invested $12.5 billion in some 230 US-based on-demand companies.

  • That investment has grown annually by a factor of 265—from only $39 million in 2010 to an estimated $10.4 billion in 2015.

These investments are happening in virtually all industries. The auto and transportation space attracts the most attention—and most of the investment dollars. But other categories are gaining ground:

  • Auto & transportation (76 percent)

  • Food & drink (10 percent)

  • Health (6 percent)

  • Household chores (3 percent)

  • Logistics (3 percent)

  • Professional services (2 percent)


Incumbents need to act now—before on-demand companies encroach on their brands and steal their opportunity to engage in lifestyle commerce. They must:

  • Identify negative experiences that erode existing customer loyalty.

  • Develop differentiating value propositions and new lifestyle offerings that customers crave.

  • Invest in digital resources to improve the end-to-end customer experience.

  • Establish themselves as an integral team player with other stakeholders looking to create compelling offerings.

  • Explore new business models that allow them to stay one step ahead of customers’ expectations.




Mark McDonald
Managing Director – Accenture Strategy

Mark advises top executives and their teams in the development and execution of digital business strategies to drive growth and business results. A prolific author and a regular speaker on business, leadership and technology issues, Mark’s ideas appear in leading publications such as the Wall Street Journal and the Financial Times. In 2012, the Huffington Post named him one of the top 100 most influential bloggers on technology issues. Mark is based in Chicago.

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