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Pandemic-Driven Shoppers in 2021. What to Expect?

Consumer behavior is always changing and evolving, however, the pandemic has significantly altered not just shopping behaviors but the entire business world in total.

There has been an acceleration in the shift to online shopping, an increased need for omnichannel, spending priorities have shifted, and much more. Many of these 'patterns' existed in some capacity before but were dramatically amplified in the wake of the crisis. And now most of them are very likely to stay.

So what to expect from consumers in 2021?

  • They are seeking deals more
According to the Valassis report, 70% of consumers shared they have increased their saving behaviors during the pandemic as well (76% expect to continue these modified behaviors over the next year).

Millennials, parents, and online grocery shoppers are more likely to have increased these behaviors than baby boomers. Even though COIVD-19 has dramatically pushed new consumer segments online, such as baby boomers. But obviously, those who have experienced income reduction are more likely to be looking for more ways to save money and seek out additional coupons and deals.

It goes without saying that the number of shoppers who are visiting coupon websites and apps has drastically increased amid the pandemic. Nearly half of users are now planning their shopping around coupons and deals. And many consumers are seeking these options not only before, but also during and after shopping. This creates a great opportunity for brands to better connect/reconnect with their audience and build strong loyal relationships. And this is exactly what some of our products and services provide (e.g. browser extension, coupons auto-apply, etc.).

Discover more by downloading our recent brief overview for digital coupons & deals in the US.

  • Trust is the new currency
People trust brands more than they trust the government. And the pandemic has offered a unique opportunity to demonstrate all values they create and bring within. But we all know that growing a brand during this tough period is not an easy task. However, companies have more opportunities to reposition their businesses/processes based on consumer needs and values, and it is much more than just offering a good price or a timely delivery. Purpose - is the new trend. Your brand has to bring value and purpose to the masses. Before the pandemic, most consumers (71%) said they want to buy from brands they trust. But when the pandemic hit, 84% of consumers said they appreciated brands who adjusted their message to be helpful during the stressful time. (Valassis report). Aside from value, convenience and availability are most often cited as top drivers of consumers' decisions about where to shop, while quality and purpose (desire to support local businesses or charities, for example) are the more important considerations when choosing new brands.
It doesn't mean that you should now ignore the quality of your products, but this purpose-driven trend will continue to rise for the next couple of years. In any way, brand trust drives loyalty and retention is what you should aim at.

  • They expect more
Consumers expect to get more digitally engaged with brands over the next 12-24 months, so get ready. But what they also expect is better price values, options on how they pay and receive their goods. How fast goods arrive or if there is a pick-up option available. Buy now, pay later trend is growing massively, as well as the willingness to find deals on beloved or regularly purchased items. Apart from that, consumers would like to see seamless digital-physical interactions. It means that you will have to find the right digital tools to timely engage your customers and provide a better shopping experience. People have looked for brands and digital tools that restore their sense of confidence, but 34% of U.S. online adults said that social media, video calls, and texting didn't make them feel as connected as they hoped. So, instead of replacing the offline behaviors, simply add more channels (omnichannel) use multiple types of experiences to build a richer emotional experience.
Today's eCommerce is full of opportunities, modern and effective tools that will get your customers right on time and deliver the shopping experience they desire. Don't hesitate to contact us for more details and subscribe to get new pieces.

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