Benjamin Franklin once said, ‘by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.’ How prepared are you for the new normal, considering that some consumer behaviors and habits formed during the pandemic are likely to linger? Are you ready for these consumer trends post-COVID 19?
Recently, Pfizer and BioNTech announced that its vaccine has a 95% efficacy rate based on final results. On the other side, Moderna released its preliminary result and announced that its vaccine is nearly 95% effective against COVID-19. While both companies are still seeking emergency approval, different countries have welcomed these positive developments. Experts have begun to see hope. In fact, the more vaccines, the merrier because the world will need more than one manufacturer to cater to the global demands.
If everything turns out well for both companies, Eureka!
These vaccines can help lift the global economy out of the rut. In fact, DOW soared to a new record upon Moderna’s vaccine update. But more than any other sectors, the retail industry could not hide its excitement, sending retail stocks jumping right away, although the same could not be said for the e-commerce industry. Nevertheless, it will be the consumers who will dictate what will work and what will not.
Do you know how your jewelry consumers will behave post-COVID 19?
Let’s fill the gap and make you better prepared for the new normal!
Consumer Trends Jewelers Should Look Out for Post-Covid 19
1. Personalized shopping experience
Maintaining consumer loyalty is one of the challenges that emerged in the time of the pandemic. Periscope by McKinsey reports that 40% of 2500 polled consumers have switched to new brands during the pandemic.
This behavior, as you will see later on, is more than just consumers exploring their options in the time of COVID-19, but rather a well-thought-out switch driven by challenging times, values, and beliefs.
Some of the reasons for switching retailers as identified by Periscope are:
- Relevant messaging and promotions by other brands
- Other brands offer numerous ways for social connections
- Price and value ratio
- Employee support given by other brands
- Active COVID-19 initiatives by other brands
The key to winning over this consumer loyalty competition is through personalized campaigns or personalized shopping experience. As the report showed, 25% of polled consumers admitted that personalized campaigns could initiate a purchase or increase purchase intent.
How to Win New Customers or Recapture Old Ones Through Personalization
Embracing consumer trends means adapting to the consumers’ demand and delivering all the necessities to ensure a frictionless online and offline shopping experience.
There are many ways to answer to their demands:
- Personalized product videos
According to a global study by Sinch, a cloud communication platform for mobile customer engagement, customers want to receive personalized videos in a post-pandemic world.
This is not a new trend but a lingering one, only that retailers have been slow, if not reluctant, to deliver the most useful digital experiences to the clamoring consumers.
This time it will be different, though. Retailers who will not adapt to consumers’ demands in a post-pandemic world will lose consumers’ loyalty.
As jewelers, you can easily implement personalized videos depending on the level of personalization your consumers demand and what they want to see. For instance, some consumers would require to see your jewelry in a 360 video before buying, especially if they are shopping online.
It’s best to be prepared by having technologies that will allow you to deliver to that need by sending videos as many as they want until they are satisfied to complete the sales. However, satisfy this need without wasting too much time, money, and effort on your end.
- Detailed jewelry product descriptions and high-quality jewelry photos
According to Periscope by McKinsey, retailers must consistently target attributes that consumers are highly concerned about when delivering a personalized experience.
These features include providing your consumers with detailed jewelry product descriptions and high-quality jewelry photos.
Detailed product descriptions and studio-quality product images are not demands formed during pandemic only. In fact, consumers have been demanding for these pre-crisis. Apparently, not all retailers had been keen to follow through.
This time around, jewelers can no longer ignore the demand, with reports showing that these attributes’ importance has skyrocketed during the pandemic with an increase of 12-23 percentage points in importance. It is likely to stay that way. In fact, clear product images are one of the top three factors that make an excellent online browsing experience across all countries surveyed by Periscope.
- Quick website loading and free delivery and returns
With most people following health protocols, social distancing, and avoiding crowds, they are spending most of their time online; hence, quick website loading is critical to their online shopping experience.
During the pandemic and in a post-pandemic world, consumers will no longer be tolerant of unresponsive and slow websites.
Further, the delivery system has been one of the major changes that jewelers tackled during the pandemic. Consumers expect free and fast delivery and returns. Some jewelers have added free shipping/local delivery options, a no-questions-asked return policy, and contactless store pick-up in preparation for a post-pandemic world.
2. Innovative online and in-store technologies
After shopping online and consumers getting habituated to it, it is expected that online shopping is here to stay and will endure post-pandemic.
According to Periscope, in a matter of months, the retail sector has vaulted 10 years forward in digital adoption. The same observation could be said for the jewelry industry with brands now rushing to build a strong digital presence.
Kay Jewelers, for example, has tapped a new digital officer to lead its online shift while other brands are investing further in digital technologies. For instance, Courbet, a French-based jewelry brand, has planned to increase its website functionality by adding 3D video and augmented reality. In contrast, Signet has added live streaming shows on social media to allow consumers to connect with jewelry experts in real-time.
Technologies, however, should not be limited to digital platforms. In-store technologies will also matter. Surprisingly, over 35% of polled consumers had seen zero omnichannel technologies in-store.
There are many ways to incorporate omnichannel technologies. Based on the survey, consumers had expressed increased interest in the following.
- Mobile payments
- Mobile app orders
- Apps to scan barcodes
- Digital screens to navigate
- AR to try on products
- AR for product information
- In-app text capability to reach customer service
You’ll notice that contactless technologies’ appeal is on the rise because of consumers’ heightened awareness of cleanliness. Your adoption of these technologies will determine how well you will compete for consumers in the post-pandemic world.
3. Sustainability is more than just a buzzword
In a post-pandemic world, fear and the uncertainty brought about by COVID-19 will shape consumer behavior, with many focusing more on sustainable purchases.
Sustainability in the jewelry industry has been around for quite some time now, except this time, the demand for sustainable practices will only get louder as COVID-19 is likely to generate a sustainable era of consumption.
Practices involving your supply-chain management, gemstone sourcing, metal recycling, and other social and environmental concerns will be at the forefront of issues jewelers should be mindful of.
The competition will still be about designs, aesthetics, price, and value, but it will also be about purpose and meaning.
READ MOREHow to Start a Jewelry Business
Are You Ready to Embrace These Consumer Trends?
Undoubtedly, consumer behavior, beliefs, and habits are changing.
In a post-pandemic world, the competition will not only center on digital transformation. It will also encompass offline transactions and omnichannel efforts. Given this, your adaptability will determine the future of your business.
Which of these consumer trends will you prioritize? Let us know in the comment section!