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COVID Has More People Doing More Online

We are only beginning to understand the long term impacts of COVID on our day-to-day lives and behavior. One thing is certain, people are doing more online. Savvy businesses are adjusting their marketing accordingly.

We have all had to embrace doing more online. Running to the store was mostly taken off the table. Curbside pickup and online ordering became necessities.

COVID-19 has forced consumers to become more comfortable with shopping online, sometimes in categories they might never have expected. For some, this forced trial was a catalyst for adoption.

According to data from Dotcom Distribution’s 2020 e-commerce consumer survey, nearly 31% of consumers expect to routinely make more online purchases than they did before the pandemic.

New Frontiers for Online Shopping

According to Bloomreach’s State of Commerce Experience study, 50% of customers are shopping on digital channels for products they’ve never bought online before. Expectations are high. People expect a quality experience that makes the process complete, seamless and easy.

The days of “we’re doing our best in these unprecedented times” are gone. Brands need to get serious about their online experiences to capture business.

That same study found that 53% of customers will not buy from the same business again after a negative experience. This highlights the need for Brands to know their customers and meet their needs online.

Online Purchasing Behavior

According to Dotcom’s study, the top five categories consumers reported purchasing most online prior to the outbreak, in order, were apparel, electronics, home goods, accessories, and food and beverages. The biggest categories today are:

  • kitchenware
  • books
  • toys and games
  • crafts
  • exercise equipment
  • gardening

Consumers have largely shifted their attention and spending to digital channels for all their needs, marking a major opportunity for brands and retailers that can offer a positive online experience. Now is the time to invest in tools that help you understand your customers so you’re better positioned to get business and secure loyalty.

Revisit Your Digital Marketing with a COVID Lens

COVID changes mean that every brand needs to reassess the approach to marketing. Make sure your strategy is in line with the times, both in terms of the needs of your customer and the relevance of your products and services.

With people spending more time online than ever before, brands need to shift focus to their digital operations and look for effective ways to connect, interact and transact with their audience. Brands need to be in step with major themes:

  • Transition to remote work and school
  • Health and safety
  • Supporting others

Consumer behavior and market dynamics are changing. Some restrictions get lifted only to be reimposed. The way of doing business and providing services is changing. It is essential to monitor brand communication at all times and quickly adapt to changing circumstances.

This can be a good time to reach out to your existing brand community and initiate new and meaningful conversations. You want to let your customers know that you want to be part of helping them to navigate COVID changes. You want to learn what they expect from you as a brand.

Show people what you are doing to be relevant. This can start with posting your COVID policies on your website and elsewhere online. Nothing is standard anymore. Help people to know how you are operating for their safety.