Shifts in User Behaviour and how it Affects Digital. An international Approach.
Since the start of the pandemic, many habits and routines have been transformed into new ways of interacting with the outer world. There was, of course, a boost on sales coming from the lockdown, for companies offering sport-at-home related products like Peloton, and also for learning and self-development. Now, almost 8 months after this new scenario arrived, we have more solid data and insights about the type of changes people are experiencing as buyers.
|Before COVID-19||After COVID-19|
|Commuting every day to an office||No commuting and working from home|
|Taking their children to school or daycare||Homeschooling or caring for children at home|
|Exercising in a gym||Exercising at home, outdoors, or not at all|
|Socialising in large groups at bars||Socialising in small groups at home or outdoors, if at all|
|Buying products in stores||Buying products online|
|Going out to eat in restaurants||Ordering food to be delivered at home|
|Going to a movie theatre||Renting a movie at home|
|Going on international vacations||Going on a local road trip|
|Visiting a doctor’s office||Using a telehealth app from home|
|Visiting a government office to complete paperwork||Completing paperwork online|
Shifts on people’s daily lives and routines by Nielsen Norman Group
The way people manage relationships and also buying journeys, has changed most likely for good. As numerous studies suggest, we are now even more keen to complete purchases and other tasks online. However, these habits and ways of developing relationships with brands, differ among different cultures.
According to The Financial Times, 60% of retail in China will be ecommerce in the next three years. If this prediction becomes a reality, brands successfully implementing specific actions for these users, can expect a potential rise in sales. International brands need, therefore, to craft different strategies in order to maximise conversion across multiple markets. In this excellent study conducted by Sharon Shavitt and Aaron J.Barnes, the differences in motivation and customer journeys between western and non-western cultures, are brilliantly described, making this a handy piece of information for those thinking on increasing revenue from non-western countries.
The implementation of such differences within international digital strategies, under the new circumstances, shouldn’t be limited to content creation. UX can of course help in a pandemic, delivering the best experience for users who have shifted their behaviour due to this fact. However, achieving the user experience for each market, having in mind this and other cultural variables, will be crucial to achieving sustained revenue from such markets.
Finally, companies thinking on investing in international markets, should have in mind the shift to “mindful shopping” and the more likely users are now to try other brands. People are now generally less loyal to brands and invest more time researching and comparing, with price having more weight than before the pandemic.
This obviously generates opportunity for newcomers, however, research is required to evaluate the different variables which will determine the suitability of each of the considered country-market options.
Changes on Middle East consumers by PWC
If you are thinking of trying new international markets like EMEA or APAC, here at New Horizon, we can help you to craft a winning plan. From initial research and prospection to creating the right digital campaign for your target users. Our multilingual team is ready to assist you, get in touch to discuss your growth plans, we’ll be more than happy to help.