How much change has the pandemic brought to consumer habits? In writing up the results of a recent consumer survey, the consulting firm McKinsey & Co. concluded that the pandemic condensed 10 years’ worth of ecommerce adoption into a mere three months.
Indeed, it would appear that during this pandemic more and more consumers have decided to go digital for reasons of convenience, utility and social distancing. Many of them say they won’t go back to their old ways of shopping and dining. And for that reason, it behooves business owners to make sure their retail shops, restaurants and grocery stores are equipped with a modern point of sale solution that can accommodate the new consumer mindset.
Here are some trends that a modern point of sale system can support:
Of the consumers surveyed by McKinsey, about 11 percent said they just started using grocery delivery services when COVID-19 began and an additional 17 percent said they increased their use of grocery delivery services over the same time period. About half of those surveyed said they planned on continuing to use grocery delivery services after the pandemic subsides. This is one of the strongest trends to hit the grocery industry in decades but a modern point of sale can accommodate delivery options.
Restaurant curbside pickup
Ordering via the Internet or via telephone and then driving to the restaurant to pick up an order has become very common for consumers during this pandemic. Of those surveyed, 14 percent said they had just started using restaurant curbside pickup and another 14 percent said they had increased their usage of the service. Similar to other findings, almost half – 47 percent – said they planned to continue using this service post-COVID-19.
One of the strongest areas of growth during the pandemic has been in restaurant delivery. The McKinsey survey found that nine percent of respondents just started using restaurant delivery services during the pandemic and another 17 percent had increased their usage since COVID-19 began. Another eight percent of those surveyed said they were using restaurant delivery the same amount. Of those surveyed, more than half – 55 percent – said they planned to continue using restaurant delivery after the pandemic subsides.
Store curbside pickup
The survey found that store curbside pickup experienced the largest percentage of growth in new users since the pandemic began. About 13 percent said they had just started using store curbside pickup and an additional 10 percent had increased their usage since the pandemic began. Again, more than half – 52 percent – said they would continue using curbside pickup even after the pandemic ends.
COVID-19 has accelerated the consumer trend of moving away from cash. As McKinsey noted in the survey’s findings, most digital and contactless services have accelerated since April with more than half of new and increased users saying they intend to continue using those services post-COVID-19. In other words, many consumers will still be cautious and prefer not to touch things even after the vaccines arrive. Naturally, modern point of sale systems need to provide the flexibility to allow customers to pay using this preferred method.
One other trend that a modern point of sale system should be helping with is online ordering. Whether it’s to facilitate an ecommerce transaction, a delivery or a curbside pickup, the point of sale should track inventory for both in-person and online purchases. McKinsey found that online ordering grew anywhere from 45 percent to 100 percent across almost all consumer categories. Similar to many of the other findings, more than half of those surveyed said that when the pandemic ends, they expect to continue using online ordering options more often than they before COVID-19.
Want to see how a modern point of sale system can help your business stay on trend with consumers? Contact us today for a demonstration.