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There is no doubt that things are not going to be the same for a while as the Covid-19 pandemic has severely changed everything about the world. Industries have been disrupted and retailers have closed shop, while consumers are beginning to look at the things they purchase with new eyes. As the world is slowly recovering from the crisis, businesses are reopening to a “new normal” in which personal safety and economic behavior have to coexist.

According to a recent global survey by McKinsey & Company, there is a drastic drop to lifestyle, social and travel spending as consumers have shifted towards purchasing essential goods and services like food and beverage, personal care, health and hygiene. Consumers are also making use of their digital options to stay away from physical shopping environments. Now, business owners have to come to terms with the new realities brought about by the viral outbreak.

However, disruptive environment brings forth countervailing forces. By exploring these changes, business owners can prepare for what’s next.

Currently, it is important for retailers to revisit and revise their digital strategy to face the emergence of new consumer behaviors. By leveraging Big Data Analytics, companies will be able to advance their processes based on new data to ensure that their business operations reflect new invaluable learnings such as customers preferring to opt for deliveries over pickups or buyers looking for ewallet payments instead of using their credit cards. If implemented correctly, retailers would be able to meet and even exceed customer expectations.

As consumers are working around the Covid-19 restrictions, they are also turning to ecommerce to shop for their daily necessities. Through the utilization of an Artificial Intelligence-enabled ecommerce platform, businesses will be able to put to work large amounts of data to identify and appeal to customers who are adopting new habits to buy basic necessities. This allows new ecommerce merchants to uncover what customers are looking for and make this a key part of their product offerings through custom tailored marketing.

Beyond new purchasing behaviors, customers are now finding more time to tend to themselves and explore personal pursuits. From self-care to picking up a new skill, virtual tools have seen a boom in usage, bringing in new revenue streams for companies offering on-demand training. In order to enhance these learning experiences for consumers, organizations that adopt the Internet of Things can further enrich their lessons, creating a lasting impact on the company’s image.

In the same report by McKinsey & Company, it is stated that people will generally continue with their new habit while ditching past consumption behaviors. This is especially evident with their new found reliance on digital activities. Nonetheless, the global survey only reports on the current sentiment of the consumer regarding the present situation they are in. Whether new behaviors will emerge remains to be seen and this is why tracking these changes as they are happening via digital technology will enable companies to stay relevant.

Facing a great deal of uncertainty, people are reappraising what they considered as invaluable. As such, new opportunities continue to present themselves even during a pandemic. By establishing authentic and meaningful engagement with individuals and communities, it will help pivot businesses to mobilize their responses to the crisis in a timely manner. People around the world are hoping for the Covid-19 pandemic to end but businesses must prepare themselves for a very different future when it does.