Online Shopping Brings Permanent Changes For a Homebound Public
The most obvious reason we’re all shopping online is that we’re stuck at home. But the pandemic could be a catalyst for a permanent, worldwide shift to ecommerce. Since online shopping has become a necessity for so many, more people are reporting they’ll shop online for essentials even after the pandemic subsides.
According to a report by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, which surveyed shoppers in China, Turkey, South Korea, Russia, South Africa, Brazil, Germany and Switzerland, the biggest shifts to ecommerce are happening in emerging economies.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the shift towards a more digital world,” says UNCTAD Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi. “The changes we make now will have lasting effects as the world economy begins to recover.”
In the States, 38.7 million shoppers ordered groceries online at least once during November, and 83% of these were repeat customers. This indicates a declining share of first-time customers, as shoppers become more comfortable going through online channels routinely to get essentials delivered. Now that the ice is broken, we can expect to see ecomm-comfortable buyers sticking with familiar online buying patterns, even in a post-COVID-19 world.
The stage was already set for a worldwide shift to online buying, and the greater share of market influence borne by publishers. This year’s holiday season shows how Coronavirus conditions have kicked the evolution into high gear. This is going to make affiliate and partner relationships more critical than ever, as publishers and retailers join forces to create a new, post-pandemic economy that people can rely on, not just for the holidays but throughout the year.