Changing Consumer Behavior Due To Covid19


Four month has passed since lockdown was imposed in Indian due to COVID 19 pandemic. We still have long road to cover before we pass this test successfully, but it has impacted our life, our behavior and our decision making process emphatically. We all have started looking at life from completely different perspective. Our buying behavior of daily grocery items has undergone tremendous change. I requested Shri Suresh Pillai, Head- Merchandising, Retranz Infolabs Pvt. Ltd. to share some of his observations with my readers.


Mr. Suresh Pillai has worked with top retailers like Big Bazaar, Tesco, more., Reliance Retail, Godrej Agro vet and start ups like Shresta and Ion Exchange Envirofarms. Mr. Pillai is M.B.A in Marketing from Vaikunth Mehta National Institute of Cooperative Management and M.Sc. in Agriculture from College of Agriculture, Nagpur. He has also completed One Year Special Management Programme from IIM- Kolkata.


Here are his observations; in bullet, short and succinct…. 


What the Consumer is buying


Consumer is basically focusing on Essentials, even in grocery consumers are not spending heavy on discretionary products (Ex: In Vegetables you can find more preference to spend on Basic veg, Basic fruits)


•They are focusing on Products rather than brands, so the brands that are able to make the product available is winning the game will capture market share 

•In essentials going for bulk packs

•Preferring Packaged rather than loose 


Where the Consumers are buying


•Formats: Local kiranas, Supermarkets, Online is the preferred channels where the consumers are buying (Also preference to local kirana, supermarkets doing home delivery)


How the consumers are buying


Purchase frequency has reduced


•Not willing to venture out in public places

•Not easy to get delivery schedule on online e commerce

•Uncertainty on product/brand availability 

•Frequent changes in lockdown 


How the Trade is behaving (Ex Mumbai)


Trade is Slow or not seeing rotation of Stocks 


Wholesale: Wherein a broker used to book 3 to 4 vehicle (20tons load/vehicle) daily is now hardly books 1 vehicle (20ton load) as there is no movement from wholesale market ( one reason can be attributed to , Restaurant industry not operating , no floating population, migration of people, Kiranas closed, kiranas not able to operate at its full)


Migration of People: One Classic Example can be Rice Like masoori, parimal which was low price point rice there is slow down, indicates the segment consuming these variants has moved out


Kiranas


Many Small Kiranas which use to be run by migrant population is not operational as paying the rentals was not viable, labour availability is a concern.


Even operational kiranas are also not stocking up, as due to social distancing, time restrictions, odd even working days slowing the stock rotation at their end. 


You can read his earlier observations here: Supply Chain Challenges of Essential Food Items during COVID 19 in India

Leave your comment
 
Swarn chetan
This is very useful information. Specially about the trend wholesale and low price point rice.
Swarn chetan
This is very useful information. Specially about the trend wholesale and low price point rice.
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