The cost of living crisis: what effect might this have on eCommerce?

Nov 22, 2022 2:37:20 PM

The cost of living crisis is on everyone's, what effect might this be having on eCommerce? 

While many people are apprehensive about what they are spending, we are also seeing investments in certain products that could overall save money. Furthermore, people are definitely mindful of ensuring they have covered all essentials and saving in other areas.

It got us thinking about key eCommerce developments of the last few months and how these tie into the cost of living crisis. Are online retailers adapting to these trends? What are customers changing in order to tighten the purse strings?

Cranberry Panda asks some questions!

To start our research, we decided to make use of some LinkedIn polls to get thoughts from the people in our industry! Our first question was 'Will the cost of living crisis have a negative effect on Amazon Prime Day sales?' 61% of respondents answered yes. 

While this was prediction based, it's interesting to see many eCommerce and digital professionals vote this way. Our second question was simple - we asked if the cost of living crisis had impacted online shopping habits. 85% answered yes and had already begun to shop less online.

However, a negative impact on overall sales, plus customers mindful of their spending, does not mean certain industries or products would not see high interest. This takes us to our next point...

Are cost-saving products becoming the main attraction?

Looking back at the prime day sales in October, there was a clear interest in purchases that aimed to cut costs in the long run. Let's take air fryers as the first example. These were quite the talking point even before the cost of living crisis, though people finally saw it as a reason to get one. With the savings in energy they offer, it was no surprise to see them as the top sellers. 

Further products included heated blankets and energy-saving kettles. With Black Friday only days away, these types of products are expected to yet again be a big draw for customers. 

Convenience over cost has seen a big shift

Throughout the pandemic, many customers chose convenience over cost. Be it paying for super fast delivery or paying extra for a specific delivery slot, people wanted to ensure they got what they needed. Is this still the case?

Quick eCommerce apps, like Getir or TryZapp, initially saw a high level of interest. However, research from NTT Data shows this interest might have already reached its peak. Research stated that traffic to Q-commerce sites had decreased from September 2022 to October 2022.

To gather more insights, NTT surveyed 2000 shoppers, where a huge 92% said they will think about cost first and foremost. The pricing of these products and the quick delivery costs are clearly weighing heavily on the minds of consumers.

Are retailers anxious about this growing conversation?

A new report from customer support solution eDesk decided to get to the bottom of this! 71% of retailers suggested they were still optimistic about the state of eCommerce, though they are making changes to become 'recession proof'. From adapting their current eCommerce strategy to investing in more tools that will support them, the online retail world charges on as always.

The report also showed that during this uncertain time, retailers are taking note of what customers are complaining about most. 36% of shoppers have complained of rising costs, a 12% increase from six months ago. With plans to raise prices, despite customer concerns, are retailers able to really tackle this ongoing crisis?

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