The global pandemic has left millions of people stuck indoors during lock down, which has proven to be both a benefit and a challenge to digital retailers.
There is no doubt that Covid-19 has changed shopping behavior.
With brick and mortar stores having to close temporarily, consumers flooded to online shopping platforms such as Amazon, eBay and Newegg for things like household essentials, fitness equipment and entertainment.
E-commerce platforms have had to rapidly evolve to meet customer demand, including trying to maintain stock levels and meet delivery targets and it looks like it could be here to stay.
The lock down period has given consumer’s 4 months to create and reinforce online buying behaviors and habits that could change the way the e-Commerce world works for good!
58%: online shoppers expect to order even more online in the coming months
52%: consumers say they won’t go back to grocery shopping in store
60%: EU consumers say they will continue shopping online at the same level post-pandemic
How is Coronavirus building new E-commerce habits into your customers?
Consumers are getting used to the convenience that comes with online shopping and new habits quickly become persistent.
Last year, convenience topped the list of reasons for online shopping and with many countries still in lock-down; convenience is even more valuable than ever.
The fear of a second wave of Covid-19 infections is encouraging people to stay home and shop online, reinforcing behavioral change in the longer term.
3. Competitive Pricing
Long before the Coronavirus hit, online shopping was a way for consumers to easily research different brands, products and price points before they made a purchase decision.
After months of online shopping, it has become the new norm to be able to simply open a new tab and do a quick price comparison search – which makes visiting a brick and mortar store that little bit less appealing when trying to find the best deal.
4. The Customer Journey
Have you ever been browsing the web to be reminded of that awesome deal you left in your basket on Amazon? That’s marketers doing their jobs right!
Marketers are collecting large amounts of data on users who visit their website which allows them to guide consumers along the customer journey – nothing new there!
However, now consumers cannot visit a brick and mortar store, marketers have ramped up their game! Brands are filling those gaps that were left with their brick and mortar store pre-pandemic, ensuring that the customer is receiving the right message at every touch-point.
The more gaps marketers fill, the harder it will be to reverse – mix this with convenience, competitive pricing and habits being formed and consumers are starting to ask themselves what the benefits to brick and mortar really are.
5. Returns & Security
Have you ever visited a brick and mortar store to be met with a ‘Money Back Guarantee’ sign? It’s unlikely!
Online shopping carries a sense of safety and security with it which consumers have grown accustomed too during lock down – although consumers could easily return an unwanted item to a brick and mortar store, it is hassle free to return items to a local post office and is likely to encourage more consumers to shop online, and, continue to do so post-pandemic.
Businesses all over the globe have had no choice but to embrace the digital world and what it has to offer and some may never return to brick and mortar after the unbound success they have seen with e-commerce, but the question that remains is, will that continue?
Let us know your thoughts below!