COVID-19 will change consumer habits shortly. The days of retail shopping and going out to restaurants stopped, and consumers shop online and cook inside their homes. What will the norm be for shopping?
Entrepreneur found that 65% feel it would take anywhere between 6 – 12 months for normalcy to return. In the same article, 75% will focus on experiences instead of buying the latest consumer devices. In a post-crisis world, customers prefer to shop for experiences that matter for their health and enjoyment instead of buying luxury goods.
With reset shopping habits, luxury products will see a drop in demand. Forbes highlighted that luxury products would be the last area to recover. Additionally, Luxury consumers, otherwise known as HENRYS ((high-earners-not-rich-yet), do not have the spending power of the ultra-affluent but are an integral part of their sales. HENRYs will shy away from their usual brands, but they are investing their time with wellness and health. Although the luxury community will see a drop in sales and demand, the brands that emphasize the health and welfare of their consumers will return of their shoppers and hopefully new consumers as well.
As seen in Beijing, NY times revealed young consumers unexpected changes to their spending habits. An unemployed young college student graduate stopped buying new shoes, and others have given up their takeout habits. Young consumers will shop for essential goods for their health, and this trend will not end when COVID-19 withers away. Thus, as Millennials and Gen Z prepare to buy for needs instead of wants, brands will have to cater to this customer's health.
Dwindling shopping habits cannot stop the growth of new ventures. As brands stockpile their goods and workers, other companies see an increase of users and workers. LA times revealed that customers are still shopping for cars. Why are people buying cars during a pandemic? If you have a stable job and excellent health, shoppers can buy cards online or by phone as car dealerships are desperate for sales. Gig workers see a massive demand for their work, but not paid enough. Thus, a coalition of about 50 labor groups is asking to reject Uber's proposal for a new category that would allow the company to keep treating its workers as independent contractors while affording them partial employee benefits.
Online grocery shopping emerged as an essential shopping habit. Smart Brief found that $18.8 billion was spent on CPG items in March, and $10 billion of that was spent on increased consumption and pantry loading. Shoppers are terrified to leave their homes, and they are ordering groceries with a click of a button. Online shopping will be a new norm in the following years as shoppers become more comfortable buying health-related items
With a sudden growth in shopping, supermarkets and retail are investing more in operational costs. The Grocer discovered Tesco hired 10, 000 drivers and 45,000 new staff to handle new products. As consumers focus on their health, health markets and retail will have to adapt to their further growth, and this will be a new trend for shopping.