The Great Shift: How the Pandemic Changed Our Buying Habits?


It was clear that when the coronavirus started to spread outside China at a rapid pace that most if not all industries of the world would be affected. Manufacturers, middlemen, and consumers all had to adapt to the situation and move into the online platforms to business, i.e. The Great Shift.  A recent report by GroupM stated that over seventy percent of sales were moved to some form of the digital medium. GroupM’s report looks mainly at four major industries that observed this shift. These include the auto, CNG, Telecom, financial services, and entertainment industries.

Some of the key takeaways of this report are:

Auto: The industry which saw a decline of 40-45% in sales during April, has returned to flat levels or better. The manufactures have moved to direct online relationships with their customers. It recommends that the company makes investments in gaining customer insights.

CNG: It has seen a significant increase in online sales as much as 277% increase in retail sales via e-commerce channels for food and beverage, and health and personal care companies. Manufactures relying on third-party retailers like Amazon are making investments in Digital Transformation Centre (DTC) initiatives as most customers have made shifted to online platforms.

Telecom: The high demand due to the work from home and homeschooling initiatives, the telecom industry saw exponential growth during the time of the pandemic. With the integration of IoT into normal life, this industry is set to grow at a rapid pace even after the passing of the pandemic.

Financial services: With a helping hand from the liquidity of banks and government-backed loans and stimulus packages given to consumers, the financial services industry was able to survive the pandemic. The banks were able to serve as digital role models and have brought more digitally focused products to their portfolios

Entertainment: Spending more time inside meant that people have to look to online streaming platforms to satisfy their need for entertainment. Studios are set to make more investment into understanding the consumer’s online preferences.

The report also states that among the world’s largest global packaged goods companies, sales via digital channels typically increased by 70 percent.


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