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Virtual Shopping And The COVID-19 Retail Therapy Boom

Members of American society never collectively embarked on a journey like this.

More families than ever before have been thrown into the same cyclical void, and we’re all taking each day one at a time. 

As a result, consumers across the country have headed to their favorite online brands to cope.

Social distancing measures and an extended bout of “seasonal” depression has driven the online sector’s earnings upwards of 176% in revenue.

Read on to learn how pandemic-induced emotions have led to the current virtual shopping boom.

Virtual Shopping And The COVID-19 Retail Therapy Boom

Social Media Advertising is Reaching Record Highs

Since more people than ever are spending their days at home, marketers have taken their budgets from billboards and external ads to social media.

Pay-per-click advertising is proving to be more effective than ever, and this has contributed to the increase in shopper interest. 

Even in their leisure time, online users are surrounded by brands that are scanning their interests with targeted ad filters and smart metrics.

Brands are using this information to create immersive, personalized ads that call to each unique user’s shopping trends.

Plus, these systems are able to use other information such as search data from partner sites to know exactly what each shopper is looking for.

Being surrounded by everything you could ever want makes it difficult to put down the credit card.

This, in part, has driven the steady increase in online shopping activity.

Online Retailers Apply Steep Discounts to Stay Afloat

In order to keep brick-and-mortar shoppers loyal, many retail ecommerce brands are offering significant sales and special deals.

This move has gone far to maintain consumer interest and is another reason why dependence on retail therapy is approaching record high levels.

The steep drop in prices has given consumers a push toward early holiday shopping, as some retailers offer deals that mimic Black Friday sales. 

Offering free or discounted shipping costs has been proven to greatly influence shopping stats this year.

In fact, this indicator was cited as the top reason for online cart abandonment by 63% of this recent survey.

Virtual Shopping And The COVID-19 Retail Therapy Boom

Although this means that brands are charging less for their existing inventory, the increase in many retailers’ pipelines has made up for the deficit and more. 

Consumers across the country have needed to tighten their purse strings following changes in employment, pay cuts, benefits cuts, and more.

However, this is one factor that has kept the commercial world running and allowed consumers to continue shopping regardless. 

Low Interest Rates Spike Larger Purchases

Other segments of the commercial market that have seen a sharp increase in growth are auto and home sales.

In contrast with the Great Recession, more low-income buyers and current owners have been able to save money with strategic mortgages and refinancing.

Federal interest rates remain low and buyers are taking notice.

Refinancing an existing mortgage can save thousands on the amount owed once the loan is paid off.

Additionally, the dip in interest has made getting a new mortgage more accessible for those on the cusp of the income threshold.

Borrowers with good credit, but a change in their job schedule, could still fulfil their dreams of owning a home in 2020. 

Additionally, current homeowners have applied more of their liquid income toward home improvement projects and other lifestyle upgrades.

Those who do not own property are also making major money moves during the pandemic.

Auto consumers are still buying cars, both new and used, despite the widespread closing of lots across the country.

Virtual Shopping And The COVID-19 Retail Therapy Boom

Both of these key markets have been able to thrive as a result of rapid digitization, which has promoted the innovation of:

  • Virtual showroom tech 
  • Virtual and augmentative reality
  • Mobile apps
  • Remote notary and signing capabilities
  • Automated applications
  • Biometric identification programs
  • Secure financial transactions

The use of homebuying, virtual vehicle sales, and shopping platforms have made it quicker and easier to compare costs, rates, and benefits across multiple service providers.

Although the COVID-19 pandemic has sent the nation into an economic tailspin, much of the workforce is still shopping like before.

Only now, they’re using digital mediums and virtual platforms to consulate the process from home.

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