NEW DATA: US Shoppers Have Spoken And There’s No Going Back From Digital

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Consumer safety concerns have been reduced due to the availability of vaccines, yet the trend of consumers doing more online and less in-store is here to stay.

In the Consumers And The New Retail Landscape, PYMNTS surveyed 2,225 U.S. consumers to examine the rise of a retail landscape based on convenience, practicality and digital-first consumer preferences. Rates of significant health concern among respondents dropped from a high of 72 percent in July 2020 to a new low of 53 percent in April 2021. Consumers worried over a new outbreak dropped from 54 percent in November 2020 to 45 percent in April 2021 and those concerned about getting others sick decreased from 58 percent to 49 percent over the same time period. Currently, consumers’ top concern at 56 percent is how the country will recover economically from the impact of 2020.

PYMNTS research also indicates that fully vaccinated consumers are somewhat more confident that the lives of most Americans will return to normal sooner than those who are not. Consumer respondents cited vaccination availability (50 percent) and decreased COVID-19 cases (57 percent) as the two most important factors in the country’s return to normalcy.

Fully vaccinated consumers reported that they believed normalcy would return in 323 days from their date of response as opposed to the 380 days expected by those who were not vaccinated. Despite consumer confidence that life will go back to how it was before the pandemic in less than a year, most consumers who shifted habits toward doing more online and less in stores appear permanent.

PYMNTS data shows that 40 percent of shoppers have shifted most of their activities toward online channels and 72 percent will permanently maintain at least one of their digital behaviors. The impact of the digital shift is particularly evident in the case of consumers using delivery aggregators. The majority of all consumer respondents (52 percent) and 80 percent of Gen Z and millennial shoppers currently use a delivery service aggregator to shop. More than 60 percent of restaurant and grocery delivery aggregator users report using these services more in the last year.

To delve deeper into how digital options have transformed consumer shopping choices and why they will continue to stick, download the study.



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