Investigate the Sudden Changes That Happened to the Consumption Habits of People in Response to the COVID-19 Outbreak.
The United States has reached a tipping point on COVID-19, with federal state and local governments implementing new restrictions on where consumers can travel, how many can gather in any given location and requiring restaurants and bars to shut their doors in the hopes of slowing the spread.
In Europe, the situation is changing daily, with cases continuing to increase. One of the first and most significant lessons that can be learned from developments in China so far, is that companies with a strong digital footprint are extremely well placed to respond to changing consumer behavior – with some companies managing to very quickly secure a place among their former major competitors. Instead of reducing all expenditures, the buying habits of consumers have changed. Chinese consumers have switched from offline activities to e-commerce. This brings relief for the economy and sets the course for a rapid recovery. In addition to the gains in e-commerce, Chinese consumers have also changed their habits in other areas – not all of them are to be found in the digital world.
Consumers earning less than $50,000 per year expressed the most concern, for example, with 39.3 percent saying they were very or extremely concerned about it. This higher level of concern translated to real-world behavior change, with low-income consumers also being the most likely group to have curbed their in-store shopping in response For example, China focused on traditional public health outbreak response tactics—isolation, quarantine, social distancing, and community containment. (Du Z , Wang, 2019) The share of low-income consumers shopping in stores decreased 32.5 percent after news of the outbreak spread, compared to 27.7 percent among high-income consumers.
On the whole, learning from purchase habits in countries where consumers have progressed through the six threshold levels may help supply chain management in the regions that have been most hit with COVID-19, particularly as governments appear to be enacting more aggressive protocols as they learn more about the virus and its spread.
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