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How COVID-19 is impacting consumer behaviour, putting eCommerce at the forefront.

May 8, 2020 | Blogs

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced countries worldwide to impose city lockdowns, quarantines, and social distancing measures to help slow down the virus spread. This unprecedented situation has radically changed people’s lifestyle, namely their consumer behaviour. As a result, every industry has been impacted by this shift, particularly brick-and-mortar merchants without an online presence. But these challenges have also created new opportunities, with eCommerce at the forefront. In this post, we provide an overview of why customers are turning to online shopping during the pandemic, and why any business looking to stay afloat during these tough times needs it. 

· At the beginning of the outbreak, people started stocking up on hygiene products and non-perishable staple items to prepare for quarantine, and because they feared running out. This phenomenon, referred to as “pandemic pantries”, caused online transactions on health and beauty eCommerce sites to go through the roof. And as people continue to be confined, online purchases of other types of products—books, hobbies, home appliances, sports gear—are also spiking (SEMRush). Before the pandemic, a lot of brands were already moving their operations online, but COVID-19 only accelerated the process. 

· People are following official health guidelines, avoiding crowded places like grocery stores, malls and other brick-and-mortal stores. The stress and anxiety caused by the virus has also prompted them to streamline their shopping process, making eCommerce a natural choice.

·  Retail brands and products that consumers used to buy may no longer be available. Necessity drives them to buy what is available online, because they can longer go to physical locations to pick and choose. During a crisis, people need things urgently and will settle for what is available now. 

· People are deserting public spaces, or they don’t want to put their health at risk going from store to a store only to find empty shelves. They want to know where products are in stock so they can order them and get them delivered as soon as possible. · According to a recent eCommerce Trends Report by Absolunet, COVID-19 and the #StayAtHome movement are driving Canadian consumers to eCommerce sites like never before, with 360% more digital revenue than at the same time in 2019.

Mobile payments are closely linked to eCommerce, as they help create the easy, convenient, secure—and now contactless—buying experience consumers are looking for now more than ever. Since the beginning of the outbreak, OTT Pay has pivoted its service offering to support clients—particularly those in the food and beverage, supermarket, and retail sectors—to create an online presence or improve their eCommerce sites through reliable mobile payment solutions. 

eCommerce is a saving grace for many businesses and could become the way people shop when this crisis is over. But one thing is sure, consumer behaviour has changed drastically and will continue to evolve. OTT Pay can provide you with fluid and cost-effective mobile payments that can help you be proactive now and be prepared for the future realities of the marketplace. Give our Customer Service team a call at or email us at: (+1) 800-688-9838 or email us at info@ottpay.com.