Post Lockdown Trends – The New In-Store Experience

Post lockdown trends: Branding and PR 'will reign supreme' -  Netimperative

The Covid-19 pandemic has altered the way we live, work, and spend. While we are far from saying goodbye to the coronavirus, a lot has changed since the lockdown began. With more consumers forced online during the heat of the pandemic, the way customers think about purchases and accessibility has tipped. New rules have come about both locally and globally. New guidelines are in place for keeping both staff and shoppers safe. In today’s article, we are examining trends that will stick around long after the pandemic.

Post-Lockdown Trends

Clear Communication and Safety Protocols: Post lockdown retailers may experience nervousness in consumers for weeks or even months, so we believe quite a number of these measures will remain for the foreseeable future. Brands that utilize communication channels to keep customers informed and engaged will gain a competitive advantage as we resume back fully.

Some of these measures include 

  • Enforcing the use of a mask for everyone in the store 
  • Explicit rules regarding waiting inline.
  • In-store messaging via overhead audio announcements or digital screens will serve as a powerful tool of information.
  • Reconfiguring employee areas for social distancing, and areas where employees can sanitize after shifts. 
  • Installing air filters and UV/LED systems capable of filtering out and killing viruses and bacteria.

 

Building Brand Communities: Although this trend existed before Covid-19, the lockdown has brought about the boom in consumer communities. Consumers are beginning to develop a strong loyalty to brands that are perceived to have delivered tireless services to customers during the lockdown. Brands that maintained an open relationship with customers during the heat of the Covid-19 crisis will benefit long term. By coming up with adaptive measures and social traditions, you will create a lasting impression on consumers. This heightened impression will continue after the pandemic is behind us. This sense of tribe will lead to long-standing brand loyalty. Brands that leverage this will be on the winning side. 

 

Technology Optimization: The use of contactless solutions has experienced a generous upsurge since the advent of the coronavirus. Employ a touch-free experience where customers scan product barcodes as they shop and make payments from their phones. Another way you can optimize technology is by installing cameras that measure and guarantee compliances with safety distances in real-time. Retailers can also create virtual showrooms, provide virtual tours, and even virtual fittings using augmented reality (AR). AR allows customers to create virtual photographic avatars on a touchless screen to try samples or put on a pair of pants.

 

Digitization and Data Personalization:  Everyone, both young and old, are adapting fast to the digital place, and thus, a new generation of customers are springing up. As a result, customers will expect brands to use this new digital relationship to know them even better and to deliver a more personalized marketing and product offering. Customers will expect a retail store to have a consistent presence both on and offline, and a requirement for continuous communication through all aspects of their purchase.

 

The conclusion

As we look to the future, this crisis will undoubtedly have some lasting effects. Ultimately we know consumer expectations and shopping behaviors will change. They will want an abundance of flexibility in payment and pickup choices. The desire for continuous customer and employee communications, including safety communications, will increase. Serving customers through all channels is how retail will survive, and so it is smart to evolve your businesses for long-term success while meeting the immediate challenges of this time.