Online sales have been growing amid this pandemic and the subsequent social distancing. A 40% jump in eCommerce has been observed since the declaration of emergency on March 12. This jump also brings new challenges for eCommerce businesses.
However, the average order value has gone down by 31%. This suggests that shoppers are buying on impulse and/or filing in on a few items as they are worried that some items will be sold out. While consumers are spending on essentials like groceries and toilet paper, supply chain issues are haunting essential retail for both brick-and-mortar stores and eCommerce businesses.
As the coronavirus quarantine continues, there are a number of factors that would change how consumers continue to shop online. Regardless of the discrepancies in reporting, retailers need to boost their eCommerce capacities in terms of messaging as well as ordering. Also, eCommerce sites doubled their ad spend in less than a month, from $4.8 million for the week of February 17 to $9.6 million for the week of March 9 (source: MediaRadar).
How COVID-19 has dramatically impacted the eCommerce industry?
Most eCommerce organizations are facing a supply chain crisis due to their centralized supply chain hub in China. COVID-19 is wreaking havoc on both global and regional supply chains and the impact is felt by practically every firm engaged in trade.
Despite the impact, eCommerce is not only helping people but also other industries sail through the current crisis. The adoption of online services is being accelerated to the forefront, gradually creating behavioral change in how people shop, consume media, health, get educated, or do everyday things. Online sales have increased by 52% and the number of online shoppers have increased by 8.8%. Let’s take a look at the situation in online sales so far:
1. Grocery shopping saw a steep increase of 110-115% GMV as residents began stocking up staples and essentials to minimize visits to supermarkets.
2. E-pharma saw 50-60% growth led by a high increment in e-consultations.
3. Personal care saw a 120-130% increase, largely driven by the sale of sanitizers and hygiene products.
As a result, those who thought of eCommerce as a secondary channel are now reconsidering every aspect of their business with a digital mindset. Minimal workforce requirements and training costs are some other supporting factors for moving to eCommerce.
Stay Ahead of the Curve
As most authorities advise organizations to prepare for the long haul, here are some steps you take to address the impact of coronavirus on your eCommerce business:
- Remember that your B2B customers and their customers are relying on you to run operations smoothly. Synchronize your business systems and distribution centers to ensure online product information is constantly updated in real-time.
- Make sure your web store also displays real-time stock levels and pricing. During times of uncertainty, customers need the reassurance that items are in stock and will be shipped if they are ordered. If items are out of stock, provide a realistic ship date.
- Optimize the performance and functionality of your eCommerce platform to address peaks in traffic. Make sure that your website has a strong web structure to avoid any loss in business revenue and reputation.
- Establish ways to reassure customers about order fulfillment while letting customers track their deliveries. Keep customers informed about how you’re keeping employees safe and the measures you’re taking in handling and shipping products.
Well, it is safe to expect that all these concerns will persist in the immediate future. So, what does this mean for eCommerce companies and how do you prepare for them?
Discover all the strategies that are required to nudge your company through this crisis. Join us for a 45-minute interactive webinar where we will throw light on how organizations across the world are staying afloat and how you can develop an action plan to minimize the impacts of global demand shocks.