The COVID-19 health crisis has impacted all areas of life globally. Non-essential brick-and-mortar stores and services have been forced to, at least temporarily, close their doors. There are very few brands and businesses that have not seen at least some level of repercussion as a result of lockdowns, job losses, and general economic slump.
Those businesses that have adapted to COVID-19 have cleverly created new ways of marketing and delivering their products and services to customers. This includes bringing their product offerings online (if they did not have an existing online presence before COVID-19).
COVID-19 and Consumer Behaviour
The demand for eCommerce in light of these unprecedented times is soaring.
- The volume of unique online customers has increased by 40%
- Online shoppers have driven a rise by 8% in revenue growth compared with the same period in 2019
- Mobile traffic for eCommerce grew by 25% in the first quarter of 2020 – across all industries
- More than 50% of online shopping transactions are completed via mobile
- Social media is a powerful lead generator for conversions and sales
- The biggest purchase growth online since the beginning of COVID-19 has been in home goods, cleaning goods, work-from-home goods, toys, essential goods (food, medical, baby goods, personal care items), and active apparel and loungewear
There is so much uncertainty in the world right now. Business owners and consumers are asking:
- How can my staff do their jobs from home?
- When and how can I reopen my physical store?
- How can I maximise sales and keep clients?
- How many people can gather, and where?
- Will I be able to access what I want and need, when I wish to?
- When will life get back to normal?
From bulk purchasing, panic buying, and altered retail needs to online shopping, people’s buying behaviours have changed dramatically over a very short period. Additionally, “retail therapy” has taken on a whole new meaning for people worldwide who seek security, comfort, and joy where it can be found in trying times.
Businesses must adapt and be flexible to survive.
There is nothing safer right now than shopping online.
For your customers to shop online with you, you need to be set up for eCommerce trading.
Benefits of eCommerce to your Business
In the age of digital marketing and online shopping, eCommerce has been flourishing for several years, however, until now, it was outperformed by traditional shopping in physical stores. In the last decade, the rate of online purchases had grown threefold to represent 16% of all retail.
In light of COVID-19, even those previously resistant to shopping online are embracing this way of accessing and acquiring what they want and need.
Currently, consumers have no other option but to access non-essential retail shopping via online channels. Those who are new to purchasing online are discovering just how easy and convenient it is – and in all likelihood, even after the 2020 health crisis has passed, the demand for online shopping will remain to a large extent.
To remain viable in business, brands have been required to not only enable working remotely for their employees but to also embrace and implement eCommerce facilities for online shopping.
Moving to an online offering and implementing eCommerce practice is an investment in the future of your business.
You can guarantee your competitors are doing so!
The “new normal” we are currently experiencing will, in numerous ways, continue beyond the 2020 coronavirus pandemic. Consider too, that until we have a vaccine or a cure, COVID-19 is here to stay on some level, and further waves of the outbreak will continue to occur into the future. The world will likely never completely go back to the way it was before 2020.
Shopping Online – The Way of the Future
Our behaviours are changing in an array of ways and this includes how people shop and do business. There is little as convenient as shopping from home, any time of the day or night, and easily accessing one’s favourite brands and products with the click of a mouse or a swipe on a smartphone. For this reason alone, the digital customer journey and desire for eCommerce options will continue to grow exponentially.
eCommerce is not only the “new normal”; it is the “next normal”.
By embracing eCommerce for your business, you will not only dramatically boost your viability during the coronavirus pandemic, but also position yourself to thrive in the post-COVID-19 world. By providing the added value and convenience of online shopping options, you may even revolutionise your brand and attract a wider audience.
Are you harnessing the power of eCommerce to ride the wave of COVID-19 and beyond?
Sparx Digital can help.