It has been over four months since China confirmed its first case of COVID-19. From then on, the outbreak has spread worldwide. With the COVID 19 now at the forefront of everyone’s minds, dealing with its effects on everyday life has become a need.
The economic disruptions caused by COVID 19 are being reflected in decreased valuations and increased market fluidity. But in times where many parts of the business are struggling, there are opportunities for others to flourish. One area of business that is helping economies stay afloat is eCommerce.
As more businesses turn to online retail in turbulent times, many will hope the existence of eCommerce solutions may limit the harmful impact of coronavirus on the global economy.
Mobile devices are the most popular device for online shopping by a wide margin. 72% of consumers are using mobile devices to shop in stores according to the latest PYMNTS’ 2020 Remote Payments Study. E-Commerce and online retailers’ supply chains, order management, and fulfilment systems are all being tested by the triple-digit order and revenue growth going on today. And best of all, more energy and intensity is being put into improving customer experiences online.
Let me showcase some statistics to prove that Ecommerce Solutions are flaring at all time high:
- The United States retailer’s online year-over-year (YoY) revenue growth is up 68% as of mid-April, surpassing an earlier peak of 49% in early January.
- Online conversion rate raised 8.8% in February, indicating a level of shopping urgency mainly seen during Cyber Mondays, according to QuantumMetric.
- As Ecommerce enabler became ‘one of the greatest’ stock stories of all time, Shopify hits record
Let us have a look at the reasons behind the boom in Ecommerce Industry:
- Panic Buying
As news of COVID-19 spread and as it was authoritatively declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO), people responded to it by stocking up. They purchased out medical supplies like hand sanitizer and masks and household essentials like bread and toilet paper. Soon, both brick-and-mortar, as well as online stores, were struggling to keep up with demand, and price gouging for supplies became rampant.
Humans respond to crises in a different manner. When confronted with an uncertain, risky situation over which we have no control, we tend to try whatever we can to feel like we have some control.
One is that the worldwide spread of COVID-19 has been accompanied by a ton of uncertainty and at times contradictory information. When people are hearing differing advice from numerous sources, they have a greater instinct to over-prepare, rather than be under-prepare.
Secondly, there is the crowd mentality in humans. Seeing others purchasing up the shelves and then seeing a scarcity of necessary products approves the decision to stock up. No one wants to be left behind with no resources.
One month ago, before the official lockdown, nearly half (47.2%) of US internet users were avoiding shopping centres and malls. Now, when the fallout took a turn to the worse, roughly three-quarters (74.6%) should steer clear from shopping centres altogether according to the poll. And the majority of these shoppers have turned towards eCommerce platforms to purchase everyday essentials and this has given rise to delay in shipments.
- Grocery eCommerce
Grocers are experiencing an e-commerce wake-up call.
As COVID-19 continues to disrupt the world, customers are increasingly depending on online channels for groceries and essential supplies, challenging grocers to prepare their e-commerce capabilities to respond adequately.
For grocers, the online demand boom is faltering. As per the 2019 report from Gallup, online grocery was relatively rare in the U.S. prior to the coronavirus outbreak, with 81% of consumers citing they’ve never used online grocery services before. COVID-19 has changed that reality as online grocery and shopping habits faced an immediate paradigm shift.
Recently, new data presented by Adobe’s Digital Economy Index, the eCommerce industry of the U.S. jumped 49% in April compared to the baseline period in early March before stay-at-home restrictions went into effect. Online grocery helped in driving the rise in sales, with a 110% boost in daily sales between March and April.
- Low Risk on Deliverables
As it becomes even more clear exactly how infectious COVID-19 is, some customers have raised questions about the safety of receiving their online orders.
All considered it’s unlikely that COVID-19 would survive on your purchased items from the time they were packed to the time you received your parcel, especially with the slowdown in the delivery system. And shipping conditions make a tough environment for coronavirus as well, so it’s not likely you’ll be exposed through the package itself, either.
The World Health Organization (WHO) addresses the concern as well, by saying that it is safe to receive packages from locations with reported COVID-19 cases. The website of WHO says that “The probability of an infected individual contaminating commercial goods is low and the risk of catching the virus that causes COVID-19 from a package/parcel that has been moved, travelled, and exposed to different conditions and temperature is also low.”
We are all currently living in flux.
Coronavirus has given rise a new challenge for many online businesses. We have observed growing concerns regarding people and companies that are exposed to financial risk. But still, some companies appear well-positioned to benefit from the shifts in consumer behaviour caused by the outbreak. Depending on the type of your industry and audience, your response to the ever-evolving situation will change. You know and understand your customers and their needs better than anyone else.
These new trends during this pandemic in the eCommerce industry have played a key role in its phenomenal growth and have also given hope of quick revival to the majority of digital businesses.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chandrima is a Content management executive with a flair for creating high quality content irrespective of genre. She believes in crafting stories irrespective of genre and bringing them to a creative form. Prior to working for MartechCube she was a Business Analyst with Capgemini.