Updated: Jul 6
People are quickly changing their shopping habits, giving online businesses an increase in revenue, ever since the pandemic. This is due to the fact people are forced to stay home and shop online in lieu of going to the mall. However, the eCommerce industry can still be affected due to the disruption in supply chain.
Many changes were brought about in consequence of the pandemic- the eCommerce scene gained more popularity and people were quickly changing their shopping behaviors.
1. Essential Goods
Panic buying has caused inconveniences for many people. As a result, grocery ecommerce soared. When everything on physical shelves have been wiped clean, shoppers turned to online platforms to purchase their grocery needs.
Health and safety products like face masks, soaps and hand sanitizers have become essential items. It goes without saying that canned goods are popular choices of groceries since these items have a long shelf-life and in turn consumers can reduce the frequency they step out of the house to buy groceries.
2. Effect on Different Industries
Online streaming services like Netflix gained subscribers in a short amount of time seeing as everyone was stuck at home.
Industries dealing with luxury goods were quickly crumbling as consumers were more reluctant to spend lavishly. As vacationing was out of the question(for obvious reasons), this was bad news for countries relying on tourism.
3. Pickier about Spending
Though it is clear that online sales have soared, however, overall consumer spending have dwindled considerably. People are more aware of what they’re spending on, and no longer thoughtlessly spend hundreds or thousands on a single item.
With people only purchasing essential items, how do the sales of lavish items fare?
Large expenditures are avoided if not totally ruled out in most people’s books.
Companies that are equipped to sell their products online will be presented with vast opportunities for their business to grow amidst this pandemic.
4. Initiative for Enhanced Cyber Security
As online shopping has become the mode of shopping of choice, naturally cyber crimes are bound to be more prevalent during these times. Sellers have to ensure customers’ accounts are secured. A way to really fortify security is using Kount Control, according to Forbes. This enables returning customers to be identified despite logging in from a different location or through a different device. As an added layer of security and instead of restricting them from logging in and being flagged as hacking, users can authenticate their identity to login to their account.
It allows eCommerce companies to detect the number and patterns of failed login attempts, so that early detection of unusual activity can be identified. This will help prevent theft of personal information while safeguarding the user’s shopping experience.
5. Permanent Changes?
Seeing as how things are progressing, it is more than likely that these new shopping habits and changes are here to stay, even if the days of the pandemic are long gone. Though online shopping was first resorted to as a safety measure, consumers are now converting to online shopping fanatics due to the convenience it brings. As so many people are now switching to online buying, online retailers face overwhelming traffic; if they are able to react properly, the eCommerce scene has bright prospects for the future.
These changes have caused brick-and-mortar businesses to offer new services to their customers if they wanted to survive, such as delivery options.
Online shopping will replace physical shopping for the foreseeable future. Shoppers are still hesitant to step out of their house until and unless the situation is under control, i.e. when a vaccine is available, at least. Shopping virtually has rapidly become the new norm and platforms like Shopee here in Malaysia has gotten even more traction ever since the lockdown during March 2020.
6. Importance of Quality
As money is now hard to come by, shoppers are more unforgiving when it comes to quality of the goods. They want something that is worth every cent and can last, so they can avoid spending more to replace the item. Your business has to live up to the standards where they can trust the business to provide them with quality goods to have a survival advantage. Not only that, you should also have great customer service and an online shopping experience that they would appreciate.
7. Supply-chain related disruptions
In Malaysia, many businesses were restricted in their operations after the Movement Control Order (MCO) was imposed in March 2020. Only businesses related to essential goods or services were allowed to operate. Although this was the case, the manufacturers still had to obtain approval from the Malaysian Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) and carry out their operations as per the standard of procedure that has be laid out.
According to the Socio-Economic Research Centre, Malaysians will continue to limit their expenditure until there is more stability in terms of jobs and income. Our shopping habits are vastly impacted and will be unlikely to make pricey purchases in the near future.
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