If you keep tabs on the news, you’ve heard that the economy is slowing, with some analysts suggesting that the U.S. could face a recession by the end of the year. Inflation-adjusted consumer spending slowed to 1.5 percent in the first half of 2022 (per CNBC)—compared to nearly 12 percent a year earlier. The housing market seems to finally be slowing after two years of skyrocketing home values and minimal available inventory.
No matter what business you’re in, understanding both supply and demand is essential. If you’re a chain business that is expanding your store base, you’re doing so under the assumption that what you have to sell is in demand. In other words, your product or service is not only appealing to consumers, but there is room for more of it in the marketplace. But what does that mean? Is there truly untapped demand and if so, how do you measure it?
In our last iteration of this population study, we compared two critical periods: April 2020 (the onset of COVID-19) to April 2021 (when vaccines started rolling out in the United States). The update before that, we compared October 2019 to October 2020.