The global economy’s agenda has been driven by the Covid-19 epidemic since early 2020. Initially, the impact of virus on global processes was difficult to foresee, as everyone hoped it would be a temporary impediment following the discovery of the Ebola virus few years ago. At first, the economy continued on its normal course, but as the virus spread, many enterprises globally pressed the pause button. It occurred rapidly, putting a large number of businesses and employees at risk.
According to McKinsey’s research, only one-third of global employees are capable of working remotely. Due to the uncertainty surrounding future developments and the duration and rate of the virus’s transmission, a portion of the world’s population faces temporary unemployment, dismissal, or reductions in working hours and compensation.
According to Intrum, the largest European credit management business, Denmark (23 percent), Norway, and Sweden (30 percent) were the countries least affected by the Covid-19 problem, while Greece and Romania (67 percent) and Poland (62 percent) were the heaviest afflicted.
Consumption levels in developed and emerging countries have decreased as a result of severe restrictions and lockdowns. Many residents lack funds and face significant uncertainty about the future, causing them to prioritize spending and decide what to purchase and what not to purchase.
The Covid-19 crisis has repercussions for the commercial transportation industry as well. Unexpected changes have halted warehouse operations due to the possibility of infection or the closure of suppliers. Rapid developments have also changed consumer behavior trends, affecting both import and export freight movements.
What changes have occurred in consumer behavior as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic?
The Covid-19 crisis fundamentally altered the way, when, and where we shop, as well as the products we purchase. Numerous research indicate the existence of several consumer behavior trends.
• E-explosive commerce’s growth
The majority of time is spent at home by consumers. Everything digital has taken on a new level of importance. This is due to the growth of remote work, education, and shopping. Additionally, this may be seen in the quick growth of promotional activity for the remote meeting tool “Zoom.” Additionally, McKinsey data indicates that one-third of US residents have experimented with door-to-door delivery or pick-up stations since the crisis began.
• A greater emphasis is placed on pricing, quality, and brand value.
The public’s perplexity and ignorance have taken a toll. Consumers are more circumspect when purchasing purchases, weighing the necessity and the price-to-value ratio. A critical criterion in making a purchase decision is the added value provided by the company – whether it be a lower price, a greater size, or more favorable delivery. If we were to restate it, value is the new black.
• Local manufactures are gaining favor.
This trend may have developed as a result of consumers’ previous expectations of receiving products in a significantly shorter time period. Prior to Covid, we could walk into a store and purchase something in a matter of seconds before returning home. Due to the growing popularity of online purchasing, freight delivery from other nations can take days, if not weeks. At the moment, consumers worldwide are more active in supporting local manufacturers, which results in speedier delivery of the goods, as cargo can be carried by local carriers without regard for international constraints.
• Larger baskets equate to less purchases per month
A tendency that decreases the cost of delivery or the length of time spent in public spaces. Consumers are increasingly opting for larger, long-lasting products in order to shop less frequently. Additionally, there has been an increase in demand for meal delivery to homes. This trend is predicted to last just until it becomes safe to purchase in person once more. It may also have an effect on the intensification of rivalry among delivery businesses following the crisis.
Which product categories are the most popular in the world’s various countries?
As people spend more time at home, the demand for household items increases. Naturally, the volume of food consumed has increased in the absence of restaurants and bars. Consumers like to purchase a larger quantity of food and consume it over a longer period of time.
According to a McKinsey study, Americans’ appetite for food, toys, and household products has increased. Consumers’ desire to be active during a pandemic has resulted in an increase in demand for garden products. There has been a noticeable decline in demand for travel and transportation-related products, as well as new apparel and accessories.
Intriguingly, demand for beauty items and petrol remained unchanged in China and India during September, although the situation was exactly the contrary in the United States and other European countries. Demand for jewellery declined significantly in India and China, but demand was still larger than in other countries in this category.
According to McKinsey’s statistics, budgeted holiday costs were decreased in all nations except China. Residents in China had increased their holiday spending plans from previous years. This could be because the recovery process has begun earlier in these countries than in the United States or other European countries.
According to the Floship study on Amazon consumer behavior, demand for fitness products has increased in order for consumers to maintain their physical fitness levels. Additionally, there has been a substantial growth in television and video game usage. And, quite logically, global demand for disinfectants, face covers, and other hygiene products has increased in tandem with the spread of virus.
What conclusions have been drawn?
Covid-19 virus’s influence is increasing continuously, however it is region-specific. While some countries have successfully transitioned to digital communication, others express a desire to return to the status quo. Nobody knows what to expect with certainty. We can only make educated guesses and inferences based on existing research. Existing trends will continue to grow in popularity, for example, remote employment and schooling.
Prices, it may be predicted, will have a greater influence on consumer choice as long as the global economic situation remains stagnant. Online shopping for product categories that we previously interacted with may be critical in the future. According to the portal “Business Insider,” Macy’s, Adidas, and Modcloth all allow customers to digitally try on clothing prior to purchasing it online. It demonstrates that the more information technology advances implemented, the easier it will be to overcome the Covid-19 dilemma. Consumers may develop a long-term habit of online shopping once they realize how convenient it is to purchase from the comfort of their own homes.
Sector of transportation and distribution
While digital is unquestionably the new reality, not everything in this world can be completely digital. Transport and logistics are critical sectors during the Covid-19 epidemic since they are the lifeblood of every economy. Delivery of products occurs between cities and countries, as well as on an international scale. Carriage of inland cargo, sea container deliveries, air and rail carriage remain the primary modes of delivery. Gradually, autonomous delivery methods such as drones are being developed.
If consumers were previously unconcerned about waiting several weeks for items, their impatience has increased in recent years, particularly during times of adversity. We may anticipate that the function of warehouse construction will expand, since demand for a variety of commodities, such as facial masks and disinfectants, has grown not only enormous but also critical for society during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The transportation and logistics industries must make significant adjustments to respond to global developments brought about by consumer behavior shifts. Demand for certain commodities is extremely volatile and even unpredictable – much like how the virus spreads is unknown. Numerous businesses have come to a halt as a result of a shortage of work assignments. Others, on the other hand, have seen an increase in demand for their services and products. Regardless of a general decline in sales demand, it is still possible to implement creative solutions and expand the transport and logistics sector. Carriers must adapt to this new reality by offering online services as well.
The only certainty is that we must be prepared and fully focused, because the winner is the one who is tough and talented enough to adjust to any situation.
SIA NIKSI COMPANY, a transportation and logistics firm, keeps an eye on industry trends. We provide international cargo transportation services for all types of cargo, regardless of the location of the shipment.