It’s a rapidly-changing situation, but it’s safe to say that the global Coronavirus Pandemic has defined 2020. Nobody could have foreseen the dramatic changes to their way of life people have experienced across the world. Many non-essential stores have been directly impacted by the pandemic and forced to close until further notice. These events have resulted in unprecedented changes to consumer behavior and many more transactions moving online.
Customers have been forced to change their daily routines, which included visiting a brick-and-mortar store. Now they buy what they need online. Whether this change in shopping habits is temporary, or whether customers will revert back to shopping in physical stores will all depend on the eCommerce experience that companies provide.
Unless companies can quickly adapt to changing circumstances, Amazon will be the new habit for those who couldn’t buy elsewhere. It can be deduced therefore, that companies who are resistant to change will come out the other side of the crisis with less money than they had… or even without any business at all.
What is the data saying about eCommerce and Covid-19?
At EasyAsk, we have observed the impact of the Coronavirus on our customers. Data from our customers shows that in March, many businesses were more or less in paralysis in the wake of the initial lockdown measures. From April, however, it is an improving picture when it comes to online orders. Most likely this is due to the initial shock subsiding, and people beginning to realize this was the ‘new normal’ so they could start spending again. One of our customers’ data demonstrates this trend.
Compared to the same period in 2019, the amount of traffic to the eCommerce site in March 2020 was down by 23%. In April 2020, however, the amount of traffic was up by 19% compared to April 2019.
The same customer recorded even more impressive results concerning revenue. In March 2020, revenue was down by 7.83% compared to March 2019, however, revenue for April 2020 was up by 100% from last year.
Is the shift towards eCommerce a surprise?
The truth is, Covid-19 has only accelerated changes to eCommerce that were already well in motion.
Brick-and-mortar operations have been feeling the effects of the shift towards eCommerce long before the effects of the pandemic. For those companies who do little or no business online, this will be a very hard time to bounce back from. Those who do 20-30% of their business online will be facing the disastrous prospect of losing most of their revenue if they don’t increase their online presence immediately.
Search on eCommerce sites has always been important. After all, searching is shopping in an eCommerce context. In April it was even more important, and if companies are to retain the new customers acquired during the lockdown, site search will be even more critical.
Over the coming months, we will be exploring how your business can move, grow, and thrive online. If there were ever a time to make sure that your customers can buy from you wherever they are, using any device (phone, PC, or tablet), it is surely now.