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The changing habits of consumers during the Covid-19 pandemic

As a result of the global coronavirus pandemic 50% of shoppers are now buying products they have never bought online before, with 70% admitting to buying more than usual. According to research provided by Bloomreach, in a study put together alongside Forrester, heightened customer expectations has meant a greater shift in investment from brands.

The impact of Covid-19 has been variable. Based on 50 global decision makers for digital campaigns, two out of five said their business continued to grow due to a spike in online sales, while just over a quarter (28%) said they would need to downsize significantly. However, investment in online and digital processes has continued to shine with 64% reporting that they were increasing budget in direct websites, whilst 58% of respondents cited mobile apps and 52% stated social media was their key budget investment.

In addition almost two thirds (65%) of respondents said they researched a product online before they went to a physical store. Therefore, for retailers and brands, clarity of information is the most important aspect that they can provide to consumers when deciding to shop on a site during the pandemic. For example the importance of information on product availability went up 11% as a critical requirement for both consumers and B2B customers.

Whilst many organisations were moving towards a digital future before the pandemic, the roadmap has become more urgent now. More than half of decision makers said their companies planned to either moderately or significantly increase investment in digital technology to support the current situation. Furthermore, companies are now realising the foundations need to be built solidly for such a change to take place – and this can be seen when looking deeper into investment areas.

Prior to Cov-id19 , marketing priorities were predominantly focused around the customer; improving customer experience – 88% saying it was either a high or critical priority – improving customer retention (88%) and improving products and services (85%). Now, the focus is on enabling their workforce to deliver this change; improving team productivity (80%), accelerating response to business and market changes (80%) and improving the use of data insights in business decision making (80%) all polled above customer-centric priorities.

To sum up the report offered three key recommendations to commerce providers:

  • Rethink how you deliver digital commerce experiences that go beyond transactions and make sure your experiences turn inspiration into action through great search, helpful content, and flexible payment and delivery options that address the needs your customers have today and tomorrow’.
  • Ensure that you have the commerce must-haves to drive new sales and loyalty. If companies don’t take areas such as relevant suggestions, accurate and detailed product information seriously, then customers will flock to other providers who do.
  • Look for partners to tailor and optimise experiences. Ask your search or content provider to do the heavy lifting, such as embedding AI capabilities, and ensure these digital experience building blocks can easily interface with other core eCommerce functions.


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Content Marketing

Content Marketing otherwise known as non-interruption marketing is essentially creating valuable, relevant and consistent content for your consumers that will engage and create awareness about your brand.

Content marketing is really like a first date. If all you do is talk about yourself, there won’t be a second date.

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