India market: Consumer behavior during and after the Pandemic

In order to aid businesses in surviving in the chaos, McKinsey has published a report on how Indian consumer behaviors change during and after the pandemic. We have selected some key points from the report and arrange them into this article which will provide you latest information about: A reduction in Indians’ optimism about the economic recovery after the pandemic;; an accelerating trend towards a change in retailers; a growing tendency for digitalization and a significant change in Indians’ daily habits.

Corona virus is taking its toll on the world, causing deaths, illnesses and economic despair. Many countries from the East to the West has suffered terribly from this widespread pandemic. World’s topmost economies such as the USA, UK, China, Japan, Korea, India and many others are at the verge of collapse.

“Registering a new high in the number of daily cases detected on 7th June, India has officially overtaken Spain to be the country with the fifth highest confirmed COVID-19 infections.” (thehindu.com)

In order to aid businesses in surviving in the chaos, McKinsey has published a report on how Indian consumer behaviors change during and after the pandemic. We have selected some key points from the report and put them in this article which will provide you latest information about:
– A reduction in Indians’ optimism about the economic recovery after the pandemic;
– An accelerating trend towards a change in the selection of retailers;
– A growing tendency for digitalization;
– A significant change in Indians’ daily habits.

A REDUCTION IN INDIANS’ OPTIMISM ABOUT ECONOMIC RECOVERY AFTER THE PANDEMIC

  • Indian consumers’ optimism has declined significantly in recent weeks

From the survey, we can clearly see that the percentage of Indians who are optimistic about the substantial recovery of their country after Covid-19 decreased by 15% in only approximately 20 days. This alarming signal indicates that businesses have to be very cautious when devising and implementing their corporate plans.

India market - Consumer Behavior after the Pandemic 1
Image: McKinsey
  • More Indian consumers experienced a decline in income in recent weeks

One of the most significant factors causing Indian citizens to be pessimistic about the future is the fact that their household income is actually reduced recently. 70% of the population answered in the survey that their income has decreased during the pandemic.

India market - Consumer Behavior after the Pandemic 3
Image: McKinsey
  • Three-quarters of Indians are still being careful about how they spend their money

The reduction in the optimism resulted in the fact that 74% of India’s population said that they have to be very careful in the way they spend money since the economy as well as their personal finances seem to be quite unstable.

India market - Consumer Behavior after the Pandemic 3
Image: McKinsey
  • Consumers expect to continue reducing spending across most categories, except household essentials and at-home entertainment

Choosing to spend money more carefully leads to the reduction in purchasing unnecessary products such as jewelry, furnishing & appliances, vehicles,.. On the other hand, some vital categories such as groceries, vitamins and entertainment at home are still able to be in the shopping list of consumers.

India market - Consumer Behavior after the Pandemic 4
Image: McKinsey

AN ACCELERATING TREND TOWARDS A CHANGE IN THE SELECTION OF RETAILERS

  • Around 40 percent of consumers have switched retailers and shopped new websites, and many expect to continue after the crisis

The lockdown regulation has imposed a significant change in the place where people purchase goods. This change is likely to occur even after the epidemic ends.

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Image: McKinsey
  • Indian consumers who are changing grocery stores are looking for alternatives that are closer, less crowded, and cleaner

So, why do such a large number of consumers want to change the shops where they are buying groceries? The main reason lies in the quarantine regulation. To comply with the lockdown, consumers have to choose stores which are closer, less crowded and cleaner.

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Image: McKinsey

A GROWING TENDENCY FOR DIGITALIZATION

  • Indian consumers expect to shop more online across many categories, including at-home entertainment and groceries

Just like in other countries, modern online shopping methods have take advantage of the lockdown announcement to win the heart of Indian consumers. Many consumers say that they intend to buy at-home entertainment such as Netflix and groceries via online platform.

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Image: McKinsey
  • Indians are increasingly adopting and using new digital activities, including remote learning and videoconferencing

In the survey, a large percentage of Indian consumers said that they have intensified their behavior for many of online activities, including online streaming, digital payments, video chat, and playing online games.

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Image: McKinsey

A SIGNIFICANT CHANGE IN INDIANS’ DAILY HABIT

  • Indians expect to spend more time cooking at home and consuming movies, shows, and video content

Due to the effect of lockdown regulations, a large proportion of citizens have got used to cooking and enjoying at-home entertainment activities such as movies, shows, video content. This trend is expected to continue in the next few weeks.

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Image: McKinsey
  • Post-COVID-19 usage intent is higher for digital payments and grocery delivery, and lower for online games and social media

Nevertheless, in the long-run, when the Pandemic ends, Indians tend to cut down on the amount of time they spend on online entertainment activities. On the other hand, in post-Covid-19 period, usage intent for digital payment and grocery delivery rises dramatically to 92% and 83% respectively.

India market - Consumer Behavior after the Pandemic 12
Image: McKinsey
  • Looking beyond COVID-19, Indians expect to reduce in-person activities

As the result of digitalization, more and more Indian consumers carried out at-home activities. They enjoy shopping online, working from home instead of traveling,attending events, and going to the mall

India market - Consumer Behavior after the Pandemic 11
Image: McKinsey

Source: McKinsey

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