As soon as the first lockdown was announced and supermarket shelves were emptied, it was clear that the e-commerce landscape was going to change. Amid an atmosphere of uncertainty, companies have been working hard to transform and innovate. Here’s what you need to know about the outlook, now that the worst of the pandemic seems to be behind us.
Is It Safe To Order Online During COVID-19?
Despite initial misgivings, the evidence says yes. The virus can only survive on a surface for a few hours at most, meaning packages are safe. This prompted a surge in popularity for postal deliveries during 2020/21.
However, it’s always worthwhile to work with a supplier/ecommerce fulfilment partner that has high standards of health and safety. For instance, at Kudos we take extra precautions to ensure that packaging surfaces are sanitised, social distancing is maintained, and employees are able to self-isolate if they feel like they have symptoms.
General Purchasing Responses To COVID-19
Statistics show that online sales have increased across all markets during the pandemic. Traditionally shop-purchased items, such as groceries, have dominated the ecommerce market, but headline-grabbing month-on-month sales growth figures of above 10% have been recorded in other industries too, including fashion in Spring/Summer 2021.
The general purchasing responses to COVID-19 have been a catalyst for innovation. The demand for high-quality packaging solutions for online retail has created a hotbed of creative thinking and design.
COVID-19: Men’s And Women’s Shopping Behaviours Vary
It came as a surprise to some researchers to discover that men and women have very different responses to the pandemic shopping restrictions. Studies show that up to 50% of men have actively changed their shopping behaviour in favour of fewer and more considered online purchases. In particular, men are expressing more caution regarding making expensive purchases.
Changing consumer behaviours can sometimes feel unnerving, but Kudos Giftwrap clients report that they are embracing the new market opportunities that have opened. In particular, personalising design for emerging demographics has seen a healthy surge.
Changes In Revenue Across E-Commerce
There have been clear changes in e-commerce revenue since the start of the pandemic. The statistics tell a clear picture of growth, with both online foot traffic and profit margins showing significant increases. Importantly, research suggests that this trend is continuing post-lockdown, and the much-anticipated ‘return to the high street’ has not (so far) been as large or widespread as predicted earlier in the year.
For anyone investing in online retail packaging, this news is encouraging. However, be aware that as retailers scramble to fill the newly opening market gaps, the level of competition is going to increase. Now is therefore the time for strategic planning.
Product Categories Shifting During COVID-19
In what is often termed the ‘Great Consumer Shift’, product categories have seen significant change during COVID-19. Research by McKinsey shows that there are increases in purchase volumes and average values across all product categories, with the main areas of change being in household supplies, personal care, and groceries.
Companies looking to venture into these markets are facing an invigorating challenge. With Millennials driving demand, finding ways to connect via packaging and branding is more important than ever.
At Kudos Giftwrap, we are committed to supporting clients during the turbulence of the pandemic with a range of bespoke ecommerce packaging services. Please get in touch today for further information.