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Marketing

Indians choose digital over physical modes of shopping: Deloitte Global Survey

The study shows that consumers prefer online shopping for everyday essentials (such as groceries (55%), household (49%), and medicines (44%).

As part of Deloitte’s analysis based on a consumer survey updated over 90 days, the Indian consumer appears to be tech-savvy, convenience seeker and one who has evolved to be socially conscious despite, social distancing and resultant isolation.

The Global State of the Consumer Tracker uses survey insights fielded using an online panel where consumers over 18 years old are invited to complete the questionnaire (translated into local languages) via email.

The first survey was conducted during the week of 13 April 2020 across 18 countries targeted 1,000 per country/wave) and designed to be nationally representative of the overall population in each market.

Driven towards being future-ready, safe and health focussed, the consumer is seen embracing digital channels to fulfil demands of procuring goods, conserving cash as well as to make selective choices for leisure and entertainment, as stated in the Wave7* of the Deloitte Global State of the Consumer Tracker.

Speaking on the Global Consumer Tracker, Porus Doctor, partner and leader - consumer industry, Deloitte India said, “COVID-19 has shifted the focus of Indian consumers towards an online digital experience even as organisations are redefining their business operations to make the last mile delivery seamless and by ensuring safety and hygiene to meet the new expectations of the consumers."

Indians choose digital over physical modes of shopping: Deloitte Global Survey

He added that they were already seeing consumer-facing companies adopting automation to better manage their stocks by reducing congestion in stores, and restocking efficiently.

"Using online channels, consumer expectations for seamless shopping experience are poised to grow and companies are fast catching up with this eventuality,” he says.

Key trends/ Proof-points from the survey include the following:

1. The online channel remains the top choice as Consumers intend to use it to procure products (essentials as well as select discretionary)

· Net spending intention for India (that is, how consumers plan to spend money over the next four weeks compared to the previous four weeks) was observed as 55 per cent for groceries, 49 per cent for household, 44 per cent for medicines, 26 per cent for books and 60 per cent for the next future vehicle prove.

· There is also a growing trend of using online/e-commerce for the purchase of select discretionary items such as apparel (53 per cent) and electronics (50 per cent) over next four weeks.

The above data points highlight how with the number of rising infections, consumers are focused on reducing exposure to infection by avoiding the point of sale terminals and cash transactions.

2. Entertainment through digital continues: Spends on mobile internet (52 per cent) and digital entertainment (36 per cent) will continue to go up as compared with the last four weeks.

3. Emerging consumer persona shows 71 per cent as convenience seeker and 73 per cent as socially conscious while 69 per cent buy more from locally sourced items with #vocalforlocal sentiments.

4. Vehicle ownership trend in India is rising: With the fear of limiting public transportation (81 per cent) or ride-hailing services (75 per cent), the intent of respondents to buy their next vehicle online has gone up up by 60 per cent. 79 per cent of Indians would also like to keep their current vehicles longer than originally expected.

5. Leisure travel is seeing a positive momentum in India: Indians have shown an intent to travel for leisure which is higher than the other countries. 58 per cent of respondents are willing to take domestic flights while 55 per cent are willing to take International flights over the next three months. With 56 per cent finding it safe to stay at hotels, a new trend of ‘workation’ has emerged during COVID-19.