Retailers Can't Rest After the Pandemic

Retailers Cannot Rest after the Pandemic
61% of people surveyed by Experian now regularly order groceries or food delivery online.

No matter what happens after the pandemic, food and other types of retailers will keep having to improve their digital experiences.

According to Experian’s latest "Global Insights Report," 60% of consumers have higher expectations of their digital experience than before COVID-19. More specifically, 61% of people surveyed now regularly order groceries or food delivery online, a a seven-point increase in this type of online payment since July.

High expectations for security and convenience, compounded by the increased demand for online payments, banking and shopping, are pushing businesses to reimagine the customer journey and the investments needed to drive future growth, Experian found.

In fact, the study discovered that one in three consumers are only willing to wait 30 seconds or less before abandoning an online transaction, specifically when accessing their financial accounts. You can bet that what happens in that area will help set consumer expectations for food and other types of retail.

While half of the businesses surveyed have either mostly or completely resumed operations since COVID-19 began, only 24% are deliberately making changes to their digital customer journey.

“Not only have more consumers embraced digital transactions out of necessity during the pandemic, they’re having a positive experience, and their needs and expectations are rapidly growing,” said Steve Wagner, global managing director of decision analytics for Dublin-based global information services company Experian, whose North American headquarters is in Costa Mesa, California. “To win, business must invest now in their digital experience. The cost of doing nothing is greater than investing in the customer journey.”

The study also found that two-thirds of consumers globally have remained loyal to their favorite brands during the pandemic. However, the research shows that loyalty may not be a given going forward, and businesses will need to work to improve their digital transformations. Now more than ever, the integration of data, analytics and technology can enable businesses to quickly adapt decisioning strategies to minimize risk, preserve valuable relationships, and remain fair and compliant.

To develop the study, Experian interviewed 3,000 consumers and 900 businesses across 10 countries -- Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, India, Japan, Singapore, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States -- on insights related to consumer and business economic outlooks, financial well-being, online behavior, and more. The report is the second of three in a longitudinal study exploring the major shifts in consumer behavior and business strategy throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

Additional findings from the report include:

  • 77% of people said that they feel most secure when using physical biometrics, and 62% of people said that it improves their customer experience when managing finances or payments online.
  • 70% of businesses are focused on fraud prevention over generating revenue, increasing measures to protect consumers' online transactions.
  • 40% of businesses are doing better at communicating how customer data is used to enhance the customer experience, protect consumer information, and personalize products and services.
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