The way the world’s business model works has abruptly changed overnight: stuck indoors, self-isolating, doing work from home or being left with nowhere to go as more businesses close.
We’ve seen panic-driven shopping and have been left speechless as toilet paper, paper towels, sanitizing wipes and cleaners are still rare commodities at most suppliers who cannot seem to keep up with the demand.
Most small, independent businesses are feeling the brute pain of social distancing as they are forced to close their doors and turn away customers. But some businesses were created with this type of isolation in mind. While some compel their customers to buy in bulk or order little by little online with the promise of speedy home deliveries.
Self-isolating at home has compelled many to turn to their web browsers in efforts to stay sane by shopping online; many retailers have opted to give free standard shipping to all customers to compel them to shop even more.
E-commerce spending in the U.S. is up more than 30% from the beginning or March through mid-April compared with the same period last year, according to market research firm Rakuten Intelligence. This is a significant 50% more than the annual 20% growth in online shopping that the firm has become accustomed to in the recent years.
Rather than shopping for jewelry and apparel, the sales for books and cleaning products have spiked. U.S. consumers are relying on online ordering beyond products for general food and safety but with everything spanning to baby products, pet supplies, and home equipment. Jewelry and apparel were only two out of twenty categories tracked to show a decrease in online spending in March and beginning of April.
Where it seems as though consumers are relying on online ordering to find comfort and solace in their homes, they are actually less inclined to buy new outfits if people aren’t going to see them. Which is why the demand for books and at-home entertainment has risen.