Millions of people have now received COVID-19 vaccinations. And this means that life is slowly returning to normal, with public spaces reopening and restrictions easing.
However, there are some changes in consumer behavior that may be here to stay – at least in the short term. Here are five of the biggest changes that are predicted to continue:
1. Click and collect
In the last year, click and collect has become a more popular option. In particular, more stores have started offering curbside pickup so that people can avoid going inside a store.
Curbside pickups were already offered by some stores. But, consumers have begun to use it more frequently and, as it’s more convenient, this is likely to continue going forward.
2. Online car sales
Some experts predicted that the pandemic would be extremely damaging to the car industry. However, despite initial difficulties and a decline in sales, the industry adapted by moving online.
Many dealers have shifted to an online approach. Rather than relying on sales in the showroom, consumers are now able to shop online much more easily.
Again, this is something that was offered before the pandemic. Now, though, it’s becoming more popular to find a car online and have it delivered for a test drive, before completing the sale.
Some companies are even offering extended test-drive services online, like keeping the car overnight, which is really convenient for consumers.
3. Remote medical services
Another big change is the decline of in-person medical services and an increase in telephone or online appointments. This initially began as people were told to avoid going to the doctors. Now, it’s something that could potentially be extended to provide people with more choices.
Medical services around the world have said they would expand these services and continue with them going forward, even when things go back to normal.
4. Grocery deliveries
Retailers have been offering online shopping and delivery services for some time now. But in the last year, demand has soared, and it has gone from being a niche service to the norm.
Retailers like Amazon and Walmart are now increasing these services as millions of customers have opted for delivery to avoid visiting crowded stores.
There could also be an increase in new companies offering these services, as demand is still high and, something that was already an increasing trend has now been accelerated.
5. Remote working
Lastly, remote working has been a major change during the pandemic. And, many employees and employers say they plan to continue working from home in the future, at least part-time.
Surprisingly, employers say they haven’t seen a significant reduction in productivity, and providing more flexibility could benefit workers’ mental and physical health.
This could also impact other areas, such as real estate. But, as the pandemic comes to an end, it’s likely that remote working and flexible working will be here to stay.