Consumer Behavior in Digital Age During Corona Times
As you can tell, the Coronavirus shakes things up everywhere around the world. Consumers are becoming increasingly concerned with the pandemic and thus, their consumer behavior changes accordingly. The intense panic that has been generated is affecting the global economy in ways unseen before. The virus will have a long-lasting impact on all the financial systems of the world; I mean, how could it not? Shops are closing, supermarkets are running out of essential items, businesses are shutting down, while people are barricading themselves in the house. Our planet was definitely not prepared for such a paradigm change but hey! What else can we do than accept it and, of course, keep ourselves updated on the latest news?
Here are some ideas on how the COVID-19 pandemic could affect consumer behavior in the digital age. Stay tuned for more!
Purchasing high amounts of goods is the new trend
People around the world are stocking up on goods. Studies show a 33% change in consumer behavior up to March 11th, when Corona was still in the transitory state and travel bans were not set in place yet. Looking at the newest consumer trends, studies suggest that 68% of consumers who have not yet adjusted their behavior will do so within the next two weeks. Fewer and fewer consumers affirm that they will purchase the same products in the following weeks as stockpiling behavior continues to grow.
Younger customers have also drastically shifted their consumer behavior from buying almost anything edible to purchasing non-perishable items. As the value of these latter items will increase, more of these products will (hopefully!) be available in stores. Businesses should not try to build up subscriber lists during this time as they might be disappointed with the outcomes of their hard work after the pandemic ends.
Medical prices are rising all around the world
The sales of medical supplies have increased by over +200% over the last two months, especially in countries such as Italy, France, and the United States. The implemented worldwide quarantine is expected to increase medical services prices even further. Consumers are buying face masks and other preventive medical supplies at a higher rate and will continue to actively behave so for a while now. They will start prioritizing health management items and products that are crucial to virus containment and public safety, according to a study conducted by Neilsen.
More online shopping
As you could easily tell, consumers are shifting to online purchases at a fast pace. The Numerator Shopping Behavior Index suggests that the percentage of consumers going online has risen to almost 30% during the last week. This is an incredible shift and will affect the entire world. Another survey found that the online fashion industry will benefit greatly from this outbreak, as more than 40% of luxury items consumers have switched their purchasing preferences from offline to online. The home furnishing industry has also risen by +8% starting last week, as consumers are more prone to buying comfortable items for their homes; since all work basically runs from home, this has become quite a necessity.
A decline in in-store visits
Evidently, the switch to online shopping means a decline in in-store visits. Social distancing has put people under the watch, with many of them unable to leave the house. For example, Italy has put a ban on leaving the house unless required. Romania has been following the same requirements lately, while China’s policy on this has long been set as well.
A need for 5G technology
Since everybody’s relying on the Internet for communication, shopping, etc., there is a need for faster implementation of 5G technology. More businesses will be tempted to give it a try, while consumers will be more determined to purchase such services for their employees. Thus, consumer behavior will be affected long-term in the following ways:
- People might become more comfortable with using Telehealth. This tool has been implemented for a while, but many consumers still choose to see a physician offline. We are expecting an increase in the use of 5G technology both in hospitals and within the society after the pandemic will end. Remote patient monitoring will become a new trend.
- Conferences can now be held online without problems since Zoom and other platforms have created these opportunities for consumers. We foresee that more people will rely more on Teleconferencing after COVID-19 pandemic ends.
Long-lasting shifts in consumer behavior
The same Nielsen report also suggests that there will be incredible shifts in consumer behavior in the long run. A summary of this study:
- Products promoting health and wellness will be considered important, so consumers will re-orient their behaviors into purchasing those items.
- People will emphasize pantry stockpiling more than before, so they’ll spend more time and money at the store.
- The online shopping industry will quickly rise even after the pandemic.
- Pricing will raise everywhere in the world, affecting the economy, consumer behavior, and thus promoting the capitalist ideology even further.
This is just a quick review of how things are developing during COVID-19 and what will eventually follow. Don’t panic, stay safe, and wash your hands!
About the Author Dorothea Oppelland
Dorothea Oppelland is a writing coach, an editor who finds her passion in expressing own thoughts as a blogger and currently works at Ghostwriter Preise . She is constantly looking for the ways to improve her skills and expertise.