What’s changed in a post-pandemic world

Last blog post we talked about the directions you might consider taking to drive sales in a post-pandemic world. Today though, we thought we’d talk about some of the changes we’ve noticed, talked or read about during lockdown.

People are easing back into their more regular lives – but what does that mean for ebusiness owners?

This week, all the kids are heading back to full-time study, retail is returning back to its regular programming and hospitality is starting to re-emerge – albeit in a vastly constrained manner.  What does that mean for ecommerce though? Many ecommerce business have seen a goodly bump in sales over the previous couple of months and now that retail’s re-opened many ebusiness owners are worried that’s likely to mean a bit of a drop in business.  One of the recurring themes we’ve heard around the traps is that being in lockdown for 2-3 months has changed many people’s habits. The lock down reminded people that spending time with friends and family, not cruising shopping malls, is the best way to spend their time, especially on weekends. Hence, it’s likely the bump in online shopping gets to stay.

What and how people are buying is changing/has changed

Given that the only way we ‘progress’ back to our pre-Covid world is via a global vaccination program (still possibly years in the making, if at all), it’s likely that the whole social distancing thing is the ‘new normal’. And whilst what you see on TV makes you think the entire country left home for the mall last weekend, most folks did not. And if they’re not leaving home to shop at the malls/supermarkets, what are they doing? They’re grocery shopping online. Now that might seem like an obvious statement, but now, even more interestingly, they’re shopping at more local vendors than ever. Plus they’re shopping less often and buying more at one time. So despite the now restocked shelves of paper goods, Australians are tending to keep their pantries (and bathrooms) readily stocked – just in case lockdown happens again. Think of it as people’s pandemic ‘therapy’ to remain prepared

Your site’s mobile friendliness is even more important than ever.

With the big swings we’ve seen towards online shopping recently, Australian data from PayPal shows that 25% of all online purchases are made on a mobile phone, with 48% of people shopping with a mobile at least once a week (that’s huge!!). Hence you need to make sure that your site is not just mobile friendly, it’s mobile perfect. So if ever you’ve got a moment of downtime, resulting from Covid or something else, use it to make sure your site is as mobile magnificent as it can be.

Different generations and genders online shopping responses are changing

Data from the US and UK has highlighted some interesting behavioural changes. Unlike Boomers and GenX-ers (who are likely to have built a greater financial cushion prior to the pandemic), more than 95% of millennials and GenZ-ers are concerned about the long-reaching effects of the pandemic on the economy. As such they’re more likely to significantly cut-back on purchases and experiences and stockpile critical items. This is a critical piece of info if you’re the ebusiness owner of a store targeting GenY & Z. Another interesting research result from the pandemic is that whilst women are more concerned about the virus, it’s changed men’s shopping behaviours more than women’s. With 36% of men now preferring to shop online vs an in-store shopping experience.

A hygienic shopping and shipping experience is now a ‘thing’.

Once upon a time, customers shopped, you shipped and no-one thought twice about what else might come with that. In a post-pandemic world, ‘hygiene factor’ is huge. Which is kind of strange given the term ‘hygiene factor’ pre-pandemic was usually applied to something that wasn’t really important at all. How times have changed. Whilst both America’s CDC and World Health Organisation have stated that the risk of spread via shipping is “very low”, your customers are likely still at least a little concerned. So ebusiness owners need to ensure that you’re clear on your hygiene processes with customers to ease their minds.

So the more things stay the same in our new normal, the more we’re likely to see further changes in the ecommerce landscape. If you’re thinking about changing things up and partnering with a 3PL on inventory management, shipping and/or returns management so you can spend more time working on what your customers really need, we’d love to talk. You can get in touch via the form below or call us on 02 9828 0111.

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