Report: Covid has changed Australian shopper behaviour forever

The coronavirus has changed everything about retail, but to thrive beyond this period brands need to unify both online and in-store retail

Consumer shopping habits formed in lockdown are here to stay, according to fresh research from Opinium Research, commissioned by payments platform, Adyen.

While COVID-19 has been a huge catalyst for change, it’s also solidified our preference for certain activities, including shopping in-store.

Australians have the strongest desire to shop in-store (72 per cent), compared to 62 per cent of Americans and 50 per cent of Brits. Nearly two-thirds (63 per cent) of Australians are also looking forward to shopping in-store for pleasure again, well ahead of the global average of 55 per cent.

The survey of more than 25,000 respondents, including more than 2000 Australian adults, provides a guide to help retail and hospitality businesses secure customer loyalty in an ever-changing market.

While COVID-19 has been a huge catalyst for change, it’s also reinforced to consumers their preference for in-store shopping. Adyen country manager A/NZ, Michel van Aalten, noted that despite the pandemic and lockdowns, Australians’ love for shopping has grown dramatically during 2020.

“Last year, research undertaken by 451 Research showed 50 per cent of Australians liked shopping in-store. To see that grow 22 per cent in one year and outstrip our international counterparts is a really positive indicator for Australia’s bricks and mortar retailers,” van Aalten said.

The shift online isn’t going away, however. The pandemic caused a mass migration to online channels, particularly as lockdowns swept across the country. And the appeal of online shopping is far-reaching, with 28 per cent of those who prefer to shop in-store acknowledging they will also shop online more.

Adyen’s research suggests that consumers have been won over by the channel’s convenience. More than a quarter (27 per cent) of Australians said they shopped more online during the pandemic than they did previously, although less than in US (36 per cent) and UK (33 per cent).

A third of Australians will also continue to shop online more than before, although there are age differences, with 46 per cent of 18-34 year olds planning to embrace this habit, compared to 38 per cent of 35-54 year olds, and 17 per cent of those aged 55 and older.

Experience is everything

A key finding from the research is that Australians don’t tolerate bad experiences – 72 per cent won’t return to a retailer if they’ve had a bad experience, either in-store or online. But they do also reward those who help them out, particularly when times are tough. The vast majority (78 per cent) say they will continue to support the retailers they relied on during the pandemic.

And given the love for physical stores, it's also significant most prefer to shop with retailers located nearby because they want them to stay open (67 per cent).
 
Positive online shopping experiences are also growing. A quarter of Australian consumers are now less likely to shop in-store because of their positive online experience during the pandemic. This is stronger among female respondents (28 per cent) compared to males (22 per cent) and among younger shoppers aged 18-34 (41 per cent), compared to 35-54 year olds (29 per cent) or those aged 55+ (10 per cent). We now crave flexibility to shop when and where we want –70 per cent of Australians said they’d like retailers to remain online, even as they reopen stores. 
 
The businesses that consistently performed the best throughout the coronavirus pandemic were those that combined their physical and digital worlds to create a fluid, channel-agnostic experience which prioritised the customer. Adyen data has revealed this ‘unified commerce’ to be critical in driving success throughout the pandemic, helping businesses stabilise sales by offsetting lost in-store transactions with an increase in ecommerce.

Retailers that want to capitalise on this newly-converted audience, need to focus on delivering seamless and secure online experiences, according to the Adyen research. It found many retailers have impressed consumers by adapting their operations and offering shoppers more flexibility across this period.

“Consumers want to see this agility continue and are looking for seamlessness between online and offline stores. Unified commerce will help retailers navigate this changing environment and excel in this next normal,” said van Aalten.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, follow our regular updates via CMO Australia's Linkedin company page, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

More Videos

More Brand Posts

As an ex employee of 4 years during the growth of the company, I can say that the new management has benefitted the company tremendously,...

Harry

How JobAdder's CMO is bringing the human truth to B2B rebranding

Read more

So many words, so little business benefit.

Brett Iredale

How JobAdder's CMO is bringing the human truth to B2B rebranding

Read more

This article highlights Gartner’s latest digital experience platforms report and how they are influencing content operations ecosystems. ...

vikram Roy

Gartner 2022 Digital Experience Platforms reveals leading vendor players

Read more

Ms Bennett joined in 2017 yet this article states she waited until late 2020 to initiate a project to update the website. The solution t...

Munstar Cook

How Super SA put customers at the heart of its digital transformation

Read more

Its a informative post thanks for sharing

Galaxy Education

The people and process smarts needed to excel in omnichannel retailing

Read more

Blog Posts

The 15 most-common persuasion mistakes

As workers across the country slowly head back to the office, many of us might have forgotten how to deal with one another in person and the best way to persuade someone in a working environment.

Michelle Bowden

Author, consultant

5 commonly missed opportunities when marketing to multicultural customers

The latest census data shows Australia has become a majority migrant nation for the first time. According to the new national data, more than 50 per cent of residents were born overseas or have a migrant parent.

Mark Saba

Founder and CEO, Lexigo

Post-Pandemic Business Playbook: An Opportunity Unlike Ever Before

Covid-19 created a shift in the customer and economic-based reality unlike anything most of us have ever experienced. Customers have changed from routinised pre-pandemic shopping behaviours to frequently purchasing new brands and suppliers.

Ofer Mintz

Associate Professor of Marketing, UTS Business School

Sign in