Adapting to the ‘new normal’ to survive is an ordeal that the retail sector will have to confront in the post unlock phase. Adding to the strain are the uncertainties, like financial stability and job security, as spending patterns realign to the new reality.
Nevertheless, the market is demonstrating stiff resilience in coping up with the demanding circumstances. In response to the unprecedented times, and altered spending patterns, the market has revamped its operations to align with the new order of the day.
The resilience could not have come at a more pertinent time, with the imminent festive season. Festive shopping in India starts about a month in advance and FESTIVE MONITOR (a part of the Hansa syndicated product suite) captures information on actual purchases of the festive season.
Anjan Ghosh – Senior Vice President, Hansa Research, said, “Buying Online, Digital Payments, Contact-less Delivery … terms that connoted a matter of choice for the customer have now become indispensable. As consumers are spoilt for choice with numerous options available online, the service standards are expected to be superlative.”
“During Raksha Bandhan, we witnessed the early signs of consumer demand picking up. Brands are expecting this demand to surge in the festive season, and are trying to come up with innovative solutions to reach out to their customers,” Ghosh added.
Today’s discerning consumers are unwilling to accept anything short of the very best. Errors like half-hearted customer service; repeated out-of-stock notices and most importantly, delayed deliveries, are not at all acceptable.
Adjusting to the demands of the pandemic, a large chunk of consumers migrated on to digital platforms and increasingly prefer to shift the entire purchase cycle online. Measures like social distancing norms have accelerated the transition of consumers from offline to online payments.
Brands are also refactoring promotional schedules to give the impression of a longer festive season. Moreover, personalised promotions through better storytelling, is also picking up, to attract consumers.
These are the top trends in the market that’s helping it survive and bring back its finances to a state of equilibrium. As the festive season approaches, hopes are riding high.
The 2020 festive season is going to be like never before for both consumers and businesses. It is only a matter of time before we find out how this festive season pans out for everybody. However, with all these endeavors, businesses can still keep their hopes high and continue to work towards the best possible outcomes.