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How has the retail shopper changed during the pandemic? 4 main trends

Life after the pandemic is fundamentally different from what it was “before”. If earlier we went to work in the office, now many people work remotely. Our habits have also changed, one has only to remember the increased demand for the delivery of food, groceries and other goods during the lockdown.

What other changes have taken place in the psychology of sales and the behavior of buyers? Oksana Tkachenko, an expert in financial planning and sales economics, spoke about the most changes in the psychology of sales during the pandemic.

1. The buyer needs universal basic things
how retail customers will change during the pandemic
Photo: Unsplash
People stopped going to the office and spending a lot of time in society. And, accordingly, they no longer need to purchase such a large number of clothes, bags or shoes.

That is why many clothing brands changed their assortment very quickly. They began to focus on convenience and versatility, so that one and the same clothes could be worn both at home and in public. These are knitted tracksuits, comfortable walking shoes, all kinds of home suits in which you can run out for a walk with a dog and go to the park with your child.

Now everything that is convenient, comfortable, and what makes you beautiful has become fashionable. If earlier there was such a thing as bad manners, when “I don’t know what I put on myself, it’s not relevant for a long time”, but now this stereotype is a thing of the past. People began to buy those clothes that will be with them for a long time. They already understand that they need to form a base and live with it.

Consumption began to slow down sharply. If before the pandemic we saw that mass-market brands release collections almost every 3 weeks, now it has become a rarer occurrence. That is, the fashion has stretched, and the trends began to include just those things that will always be relevant. There was an emphasis more on basic wardrobe items.

2. Mass transition to online shopping
how retail customers will change during the pandemic
Photo: Unsplash
The retail customer is accustomed to online shopping, the Internet is gaining momentum, and in the future it is offline that will become an addition to online. That is, the usual shopping in the store will remain for such people who want to come, touch, feel, breathe. But they still go to order online. That is, offline will remain in the form of a kind of showcase, which, in principle, is already happening now.

I very often see the following message in the recommendations of fashion experts: “You go to the store, try on this thing, take a picture. Sleep with this thought and order online, because it will come new, in packaging, and in the store it hangs by someone already measured many times. And here is such a detachment from society that appeared before the pandemic, it is also expressed in this. I want something new, packaged, safe – this is also a modern trend.

And then there is the culture of online shopping. Even those who used to love real shopping began to buy more often in online stores. In 2020, there has been an increase in the number of users who have never shopped online before. Interestingly, most of them not only began to regularly use online stores. Some even began to subscribe, with the help of which regular customers receive great deals.

Customers want more isolation, so that the goods are brought home, they do not have to go anywhere and communicate with anyone. And even if you suddenly want to go for a walk and try on things, then after that I will still order everything online.

All this is confirmed by statistics: the growth in the number of online stores, the increase in sales turnover of existing companies speak for themselves. Thus, the audience of buyers of the large Wildberries marketplace has increased by about 6 million people and now stands at about 30 million buyers. And the Ozon trading platform notes an increase in sales turnover by almost 200%.

The growing popularity of online shopping is noted not only by marketplaces, but also by retail stores that have gone beyond offline trading. For example, X5 Group increased the share of digital sales in total revenue by 2% in February 2021 alone.

3. Slowdown in fashion and interest in second-hand things
how retail customers will change during the pandemic
Photo: Unsplash
As fashion has slowed down, people have become more conscious of their consumption. A very good position is occupied by resale (secondary) and vintage consumption. And this trend will continue to grow. Now there is no longer any disgust for things that someone wore before you – they can be washed or dry-cleaned.

These are good things that can be used for a long time. And if they don’t like it, they’re easy to resell or give away. Therefore, Avito, vintage stores and garage sales are gaining such popularity. They are experiencing a surge in demand. This trend has been observed for a long time, but the pandemic has pushed it.

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