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Queues in online stores

Updated: May 14

Author: Vanja Čas

Source: Lemur Legal


While visits to physical stores are - understandably - diminishing due to anti-virus measures, this is an exciting time for e-commerce. In a study conducted by the Ipsos MORI Research House between March 12 and March 14, respondents from the affected regions revealed that the pandemic changed not only their lifestyle but also their behaviour and habits. 50% of Chinese and 31% of Italian consumers say that the products they usually buy in physical stores, they now buy online. Other countries, such as Vietnam, India, and Russia, have also noted that their populations are more likely to go online, with increased use of 57%, 55% and 27%, respectively.

“People are gradually transitioning from physical to online shopping and when the epidemic ends, this habit will not just disappear. Thus, the entire e-commerce industry will be very positively affected by the coronavirus.“ (Zhong Zhenshan, IDC)

Crisis = opportunity


A great example of a company that experienced above-average growth in 2002-2003 when the SARS virus was overtaking the world is Alibaba. We will outline some examples that show that in the future, online commerce will develop faster than ever predicted. Although the world is going through tough times, e-commerce is strong as ever and can answer some of the most difficult questions.This is a positive direction for achieving society’s long-term goals, such as total digital transformation.


Retail stores


According to Forbes, online stores are expected to account for 12% of total retail sales in 2020. With increasing consumer’s convenience when shopping online, technology is also evolving by becoming more intuitive and ubiquitous. As a result, online sales may increase faster than predicted.


Food delivery


During the crisis in China, food delivery companies are growing like mushrooms after the rain. Due to the current situation, millions of restaurants are forbidden to let customers through their doors, meaning that food delivery is the only income-generating option for them. A good number of restaurants in Slovenia are also making the best of the current situation and offer delivery of their food through platforms like eHrana or Wolt.


Nevertheless, delivery is not always an easy process in the time of crisis. In Italy the current pause on life has forced brands to respond and find successful solutions. As carriers are not able to deliver shipments to households within quarantined cities, companies have developed systems that allow them to check whether certain delivery is possible or not.


Fashion


The Bianca Spender fashion brand has adapted to the current situation by offering an e-boutique where customers can book a private online meeting and by opening telephone lines through which online shoppers can chat with team members. Being aware of the growing sense of isolation, they maintain personal communication across channels and create more lightweight video content.


Luxury products


An Italian manufacturer of luxury bags and shoes Les Petits Joueurs, has created a virtual showroom with augmented reality (AR) capabilities that can be tested on every product. As a result of this innovation, they have noticed a marked increase in website visits over the last few days.


Healthcare


JD Health has launched free online healthcare consultation services and introduced an online tool to help patients with chronic illnesses maintain their medication supply.


Alibaba has created a platform that connects merchants and hospitals with local government. They recently even released a statement where they committed to deliver necessary goods to hospitals in need, no matter where they are located.


Only the most adaptable can win


I will end this record with a summary in the form of guidance:


  • Keep up with the changes in consumer’s behaviour and adapt to market needs: with people getting used to online shopping, new opportunities arise. For example, people will look for opportunities to shop for fun and certain merchandises (e.g. makeup) are practically resistant to the recession. Online events that increase enthusiasm and give you a sense of opportunity are a magnet for consumer’s “pleasure”. A good example of such an event is the annual Vogue pre-Christmas online shopping night, which I predict to be very successful this year.


  • Focus on the consumer and offer him the most creative solutions: while social distancing is becoming the norm, one of the opportunities for growth in the current crisis is establishing online stores on social media. Brands looking to add value within their ecommerce offering can improve the shopping experience with a “shoppable” Instagram post. For instance, Lego and Snapchat co-created an AR Fashion Store for the purpose of launching Lego’s Disney brand. Nike’s Air Jordan 1111 Tinker shoes sold out in minutes with the help of an AR lans and instant shopping feature. Features such as Amazon’s visual search of the Amazon store via Snapchat app adds an extra dimension to the shopping experience.


All in all, stay positive and make sure to reflect that in your brand’s communications. Give your users as many creative solutions as possible, and remember that the solutions you create during this crisis will co-create the future and have a significant impact on online shopping.


You should also make sure that your online store always complies with all current laws and regulations in order to avoid any unnecessary penalties and misunderstandings.


If you by any chance need help with that, you can read more about our services at and find out if we can take this burden off of your shoulders.