If online shopping was already big before, the current global situation just took to another level. It’s not just that people are shopping online more, but the pandemic is also changing how the general public shops and how they make decisions when shopping. Because of this, more and more brands are re-assessing their business and considering how to improve customers’ experience in their eCommerce stores.
Take a look at some of the shopping behaviours people are exhibiting nowadays. This may give you an idea of how to revamp your online store.
Trying Not To Touch Things As Much As Possible
Most people are now aware that the virus can last for days on surfaces depending on the material. Because of this, even as stores started to reopen, shoppers tend to be wary about touching the merchandise. This also includes pushing carts and punching buttons on credit card readers. They would try not to touch anything if they can help it.
Because of this, more stores are launching contactless payment methods to help make shoppers feel safer in their stores along with the encouraged use of hand sanitisers before and after trying on items like jewellery.
Avoiding Close Contact With Other People
Personal bubbles are now more precious than ever. Aside from the suggested social distancing of six feet away, people are now more conscious of coming into contact with others. This means tight and cramped spaces are avoided and open-air shopping centres will be preferred compared to enclosed ones. Stores even limit the number of customers inside at the same time just to avoid crowding. Let’s say you’re a new store or you’ve just reopened after a while. It would be a good idea to have a virtual tour of your store on your website or share them on your social media platforms. It will let people check the store out without the need to visit the store physically.
Supporting Local Stores And Brands More
As the pandemic hit the economy, many businesses either experienced a huge blow on their bottom lines or had to fully close down because the effect on their sales was too great. Even non-business owners are aware of this which is why they’re now choosing to support local stores. This not only helps struggling businesses stay afloat but also boosts the local economy.
Discretionary Spending Drops
One of the things the pandemic has shifted in people’s way of shopping is that bulk buying of groceries and household essentials became a priority. As a result, sales in retail that sell clothes, shoes, bags, and other accessories that aren’t deemed necessary for the current situation dropped. And because of the rising unemployment all over the world due to the pandemic, retail sales are expected to decline even further. So retail stores have to find a way to adapt and stay relevant, otherwise, they may be heading for closure if this whole thing continues.
Video calls and meetings are, as well all know, already a thing for a while now. But the spread of the virus urged the public to go virtually for everything else as much as they can. This is why, exercising, working, learning, and even dating are taking place online now more than ever.
But in terms of shopping, online stores are already in place before covid. The difference is that people still have the liberty to visit physical stores whenever they please. Now that stores are forced to temporarily close early this year and are just recently starting to open up, though not fully operational, retailers really need to reinvent and improve their virtual stores if they want to cater to the current needs and wants of the masses. Offering a Matterport 3D virtual tour of their store combined with eCommerce not only allows them to enjoy browsing through the shop as they would in a physical one but also immediately link them to buy a product they find. They can even check on tagged details like sizes, material and more. It’s a much more immersive and interactive experience compared to typical online stores where the products are displayed on a white background.
Choosing Brands That Are Sensitive To The Crisis
These days, consumers aren’t just looking at products and services that they’re interested in purchasing. They are also critical of the brand’s behaviour towards this current crisis. Do they make it easier to shop virtually? Do they support social distancing and sanitizing? Do they implement it in their own stores? And do they provide protection for their employees as they do for their customers? All of these things can say a lot whether a brand is taking the situation and the safety of every individual that they deal with seriously. This then can give peace of mind for the consumers which makes them feel okay about shopping in a particular store.