man relaxing on couch with phone
The desire for convenience has shaped the lifestyles of many consumers, and businesses are making moves every day to cater to that need. — Getty Images/shapecharge

Consumers have quickly become accustomed to having whatever they want, whenever they want it. And technology has made that desire a reality. Rather than speaking to a barista at Starbucks, you can order your coffee from your phone. Instead of hailing a cab or driving in bad weather, you can order an Uber to get you to your destination.

It seems there are efficient alternatives to just about every chore or experience today, from furniture shopping to cooking. And thanks to new businesses leveraging these tech developments, you barely even have to leave the house unless you want to.

It’s the age of convenience, and these five companies are a sign of the times. Here’s how popular brands are disrupting their industries by catering to the “lazy” consumers of our time.

 madison reed app
Hair care company Madison Reed wants its customers to achieve the beauty they desire with ease and affordability. — Madison Reed

Madison Reed — A salon experience in the comfort of your own home

Want a professional dye job without leaving the house? Madison Reed will send a professional-grade coloring kit (and instructions) right to your door.

Amy Errett, founder of this at-home hair care disruptor, not only wanted to cater to consumers in a more convenient way, she also wanted to offer a healthier alternative to other hair products on the market. After researching the ingredients of many personal care products, she grew concerned with the ever-present harsh chemicals.

To bridge this gap in the hair care industry, Errett decided to create a budget-friendly, DIY, at-home hair color made with conscientious ingredients. The kit also includes customized instructions and items like gloves and cleansing wipes.

Madison Reed now operates six of its own brick-and-mortar salons and partners with Ulta, expanding its product offering to over 1,200 Ulta stores. To read more about Madison Reed, check out our full story on the brand.

[Read: 10 Big Trends Inspiring New Business Ideas]

Meal kit companies offer convenience by removing the two lengthiest parts of meal preparation: planning and shopping.

Meal kit companies — A gourmet meal, without having to buy in bulk

Want a home-cooked meal without the long grocery list? Meal kit services have you covered.

Many major retailers, from Walmart to Whole Foods, are now offering meal kits in their grocery stores. Rather than spending hours meal-prepping for the week, you can simply pick up a kit that includes the exact amount of each required ingredient, so you can quickly whip up a home-cooked meal in half the time — all while experimenting with different types of cuisine.

Interested in learning more about meal kit companies? Read our story on how businesses are taking this market by storm.

 vitamin packets spread out on a table
From its quiz that offers vitamin recommendations to its daily packaging, Care/of aims to help its customers both choose their vitamins and take them regularly. — Care/of

Care/of — Vitamin buying without the extra legwork

Need to start taking your vitamins, but unsure which are right for you? Let Care/of help customize your regime.

This direct-to-consumer vitamin brand understands the struggle of shopping for vitamins and supplements. There are millions on the market, and finding the right ones can feel more like a guessing game. That’s where Care/of comes into play.

Craig Elbert, co-founder and CEO of this wellness brand, wanted to improve the consumer purchasing process of vitamins and supplements by using a “signature, science-backed quiz” that helps determine unique regimens for customers. From screening personal health concerns to diet preferences, the quiz provides a customized result for every customer, based on peer-reviewed scientific research and clinical reports as well as advice from medical professionals and nutritionists.

Check out our full story on the development and continued success of Care/of.

 Robert Wang, CEO of Instant Brands
Instant Pot founder Robert Wang wanted to create a tool that allows a meal to be made in a fraction of its normal time, saving his customers time in the kitchen. — Instant Brands Inc.

Instant Pot — A delicious meal in minutes

Want to enjoy a fresh, savory meal without spending hours slaving over the stove? Try the Instant Pot.

While fast food is a tempting option for an individual on-the-run, thanks to developments in tech, there are healthier alternatives for these busy folks. Robert Wang, founder of this popular multicooker and its brand, wanted to help families and professionals prepare quality foods in less time — alleviating their stress while encouraging consumption of healthier meals. Using this product, you can prepare a home-cooked meal in minutes.

Read our full story on how Wang invested in innovation over advertising, and leveraged word-of-mouth marketing to grow his brand.

 iphone screen showing wayfair's AR app
Many are skeptical of ordering big purchases online, and Wayfair has responded to these skeptics by offering its innovative augmented reality feature. — Wayfair

Wayfair — Furniture shopping without the guesswork

Wish you could see how a piece of furniture fits in your space before committing to the purchase? With today’s tech, you can.

Popular e-commerce home goods company Wayfair uses augmented reality to provide a realistic visual experience, so consumers can “try before they buy.” By overlaying digital images onto real world imagery, augmented reality helps consumers make purchasing decisions without the physical product. This not only saves time and money — it reduces the risk of returns while encouraging consumers to take more risks with their shopping.

Sometimes, you don’t know until you try — and, thanks to augmented reality, trying is now free and harmless.

Read our full story on how augmented reality is driving the evolution of brands like Wayfair.

Looking to jump on the bandwagon of convenient businesses catering to “lazy” consumers? Let these brands inspire your endeavor, so you can turn your passion into an efficient company that goes beyond offering mainstream products and services.

[Read: 4 Steps to Bring Your Business Idea to Life]

CO— aims to bring you inspiration from leading respected experts. However, before making any business decision, you should consult a professional who can advise you based on your individual situation.

Published October 07, 2019