Consumer shopping habits formed during COVID will last long after the virus is over – India is an example.
India – a country with a population of 1.3 billion that is more than 50% under the age of 25, and more than 65% below the age of 35! That represents a great and growing, young and demanding consumer market. By the end of 2021, the median age in India will be 29 years which foretells that consumer shopping habits will change.
IBM, recently released a Consumer Survey on changing consumer preferences and sentiments on living and shopping in pre/post COVID society. The survey polled over 13,500 people in eight highly virus impacted countries (Brazil, China, Germany, India, Mexico, Spain, UK, and U.S. What the study indicated was that 47% of global consumers were experiencing declining discretionary household spending since March. But that there were certain common trends that were marked by differences in consumption habits across countries.
The vast majority of Indians insisted and expected that businesses and venues take measures to protect them in order to feel safe and comfortable visiting these establishments. Tops demands were the usual: social distancing, face coverings, clearly communicated hygiene/sanitation practices. Many also wanted mandatory health checks for employees and patrons. Safety was clearly at the top of the demand list across the board for all businesses.
Indian shoppers are using various types of consumer tools and services. Mobile contactless payment, order online/pick-up in-store, placing orders via mobile app (a new shopping mechanism that has gained huge growth). All of these shopping/payment methods will continue to be used by many in the consumer market post-COVID. 30% of polled consumers said that would continue to use mobile contactless payment. 23% will continue to purchase via social media, and 22% will carry-on using voice search for adding items to their shopping carts.
Globally, consumers are not that different in their quest for good value and convenience in the brands they purchase.
The world over, consumers want products/services that offer specific qualities to meet their demands. For example, organic, fresh, environmentally friendly – over 70% of consumers want products important to them when choosing a brand. Businesses need to be aware that consumer behaviors are trending toward shared values on a global basis. The demands and needs of consumers across the world are much more similar and shared than once believed. Consumers are clearly becoming universal in their behaviors and means of purchasing on a global scale.
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