#5 Increasing Investments in Health
On the more essential end of the market, it’s no surprise that when a pandemic takes over the world, the first thing you would think about is your health and that of your loved ones. Out of the necessities that consumers are spending on, health products are taking up a huge share of wallet.
From basic products like sanitizers to immunity boosters, the consumption of health-improvement and sanitary products are becoming a way of life. Germaphobia is not going away anytime soon, and with improved sense of sanitation and hygiene, the demand for such products is unlikely to go down.
#6 Increasing Preference for Local Stores
With limited mobility and spend allocated to necessities, consumers have been relying on local stores for their day-to-day needs. Many are even making a conscious decision to shop local to contribute to their community’s well-being during this difficult time.
With personalization, high levels of service, convenience and low pricing governing customer loyalty, it’s likely that consumers will stick around to small shops for their day-to-day needs as they develop relationships and experience greater levels of personalization.
#7 Changing Attitude towards Privacy
In the same EY survey, 53% of consumers in their index would make their personal data available if it helped to monitor and track an infection cluster. From customers guarding every piece of their data to them willingly sharing sensitive information like location — COVID-19 has helped customers build trust in sharing data in a very short span of time.
Over time, consumers will be more and more comfortable sharing their data with retailers if they trust it’s used responsibly, which would help retailers get to know their customers on a whole new level and personalize offers and promotions like never before.
#8 Low Tolerance for Errors
With many more options in the market catering to consumer needs (and local stores taking greater prominence than before), higher service standards have led to higher expectations. Unwilling to settle for anything but the best, customers are surrounded by ample alternatives to their needs as they gain access to more and more products.
Errors like delayed deliveries, frequent out-of-stock notices or bad customer service are not on the table anymore. Retailers leveraging the opportunity to optimize pricing, promotions and inventory in real time across their in-store and digital channels will continue to hold a majority of the market share, while the rest will compete for a small fraction of the market. How organizations will fare will depend on the choices they make.
For instance, according to a study published by Auburn University, investment in refrigeration, the automobile, and packaging is what helped supermarkets, then known as “combination stores,” survive the Great Depression. A similar challenge arises today, and the question is: Do you want to be A&P and Kroger, or do you prefer to invest in a moment that soon will pass?
Prem Kiran is CEO and Founder of Hypersonix, an AI-driven analytics platform used by Amazon, Smart & Final Stores and hundreds of KFC franchises across the United States.