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The Pandemic's Impact on Buying Behaviors
What starts here changes the world... and buying behaviors. 

Covid-19 has impacted almost every sector and upended the way we go about our daily lives. In the midst of this chaos, certain categories have established their utility, found new opportunities to showcase their value, and sparked joy. These brands will see increases now, but also buying behavior impacts that outlast the pandemic. 

Establishing utility

There is a heightened focus on brands that can streamline a consumer’s life and provide utility. According to a recent Accenture study, people plan to buy or increase their usage of Wi-F (77%), voice-enabled digital assistants (57%), and intelligent home devices (56%). The home is the center of our life in and out of pandemic. During prolonged periods in doors, consumers value a strong wifi network and connected home in streamlining their life.  They will even overcome technological barriers to do so.

Consumers who plan to increase usage of wifi or smart technology

Amazon, Walmart, and Instacart made inroads in e-comm grocery, but it took consumers avoiding grocery stores to appreciate the convenience of delivery and buy online, pick up in store (BOPIS). Nielsen reported a 60% increase in CPG online orders, where a large portion of that increase came from new households (37%) and adults over 55 (40%). New audiences and increase in frequency from existing ones will reshape the future of grocery retail. Consumers develop new routines during these times, and online ordering is a convenience they can incorporate into their future shopping patterns.

Showcasing value 

Direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands like Warby Parker and Casper paved the way for atypical DTC verticals to find their niche and engage with consumers directly. Now, verticals like fitness have a chance to entice new consumers and show their value. Researchandmarkets.com saw a 170% increase in fitness equipment sales. If consumers can do a quick Peloton ride or Mirror barre class between meetings or feeding their kid, a brand has already provided a new way to incorporate into their life.

Sparking joy 

Consumers are engulfed in news, keeping their families afloat, and the stress of their daily lives, so the brands that can provide entertainment and spark joy set themselves apart. Netflix had a 32% increase in paid subscribers during the week of March 16th, which means recurring revenue beyond the pandemic. It also means consumers can get hooked on new content or find their way into cultural phenomenon (ie.e, Tiger King) that connect them to others. Gaming, near and dear to our heart, saw a 132% increase in installs in the last week of March, according to Adjust

Gaming Installs 2020 vs 2019
Source: Adjust App Trends 2020

Popular video game streaming service Twitch saw a 20% increase of traffic, while ironSource saw a 25% increase in IPM (installs per thousand). ironSource monetizes some of the largest hyper-casual mobile games, and an increase in installs brings in more users to experience the easy and captivating nature of the genre. 

This is a chance for entertainment companies to forge new emotional connections with their consumers through new stories, characters, and games, and ways to connect to others through shared interests. While the bursts of success will likely stabilize post pandemic, the discovery, adoption, and appreciation of new products and services will carry beyond.