At some point so far this year, half of the world’s population has been asked or ordered to stay home, changing consumers’ behaviours and purchasing habits.
When asked to explain our current situation, business experts often talk about VUCA – an acronym for Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity. Created more than 30 years ago, the concept has never been so alive. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed most of our habits and the purchasing experience is one of the most affected. Quadpack interviewed some of its global clients to better understand what’s behind the e-commerce ‘new normal’.
Have you perceived any change in consumer behaviour due to the COVID situation?
"Yes, we have. As of March 2020, Europe seemed to be in a state of shock due to the unexpected and life-changing precautions ruled-out by governments. From our point of view, consumers prioritised the purchase of relevant grocery goods rather than spending money on new luxury items during that time. As a result, our online sales dropped. However, since April sales bounced back. People obviously want to support local shops and smaller businesses. A nice trend!" Kira-Janice Laut, co-founder of skincare brand cult.care
"At the very beginning of the crisis, we noticed a big fall in visits and in sales, as people were very worried about the situation and their priority wasn't to buy make-up. At the second stage, we adapted our communication and saw a spike in visits, but the purchase was lower than normal. At the actual stage, we are seeing consumer behaviour very similar prior to the crisis, as people are visiting and buying at a similar rate than before." David Hart, founder and CEO of make-up brand Saigu
Have you adapted your e-commerce strategy to respond to the "new normal"?
"Our biggest priority in this crisis has been to adapt our communication and content to the actual situation. We've emphasised the benefits of our makeup (not the features) and we identified that lots of our customers were using our make-up while making video calls or going to the supermarket, so we created specific content for these situations to attract new customers." David Hart, founder and CEO of Saigu
What are the e-commerce opportunities that you are contemplating in this new scenario?
"As a business primarily relying on e-commerce sales, we do however see a strong necessity to focus on the basics of customer retention: follow high ethical standards and sell good products. Customers will appreciate this and stay with your brand." Kira-Janice Laut, co-founder of cult.care
"The change in purchasing habits of make-up customers, as retail still has the majority share and e-commerce remains a small fraction. We think that this situation can help customers reconsider how they buy make-up and, if we provide a good experience, we can acquire new loyal customers." David Hart, founder and CEO of Saigu
We would like to thank David and Kira for sharing their experiences!
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