Sponsored by New Age Electronics
The pre-COVID consumer and the peak-COVID consumer each have their discernible differences. But, as the state of the pandemic stands today, it’s time to start preparing for a new consumer who will possesses traits of each: the post-COVID consumer. Because even as things get back to normal, they are not getting back to the same.
The Budget and Tech-Savvy Consumer
Today’s consumers should not be underestimated when it comes to their tech and budget savviness. They are now armed with the know-how and confidence to seek shopping solutions that work best for them, whether it be shopping online, scheduling curbside pickups, or BOPIS (Buy Online, Pick Up In Store) ordering. Comparing prices and hunting for deals has also never been more prominent. While it is true that we saw many of these habits even before the pandemic, the past year and a half has exceedingly conditioned shoppers to begin their journeys online.
Looking ahead, even as stores begin opening at full capacity and lifting mask policies, consumers still want to be able to look, in real time, if something is in stock, what the reviews say, the best accessories to go with a certain product, etc. Anticipating these new preferences with offerings like New Age Electronics’ Build a Box Bundle ensures consumers can get everything they need in one trip.
The Desire to Shop is Still There But the Inventory May Not Be
Even as stimulus and tax return spending tapers off, people remain fervent in their desire to shop. However, product constraints and chip and glass shortages are still affecting many tech categories and could continue throughout holiday season. For that reason, inventory and availability will be a large factor in what people buy this year.
Last year, a lot of products were shifted to distribution because they could get options. This year is presenting its own challenges as production rebounds post-COVID. New Age Electronics is getting ahead of this imbalance by doing collaborative planning with customers and vendors to make sure that product is available when needed.
A New Back to School and Holiday Season
The 2020-21 school year saw a major paradigm shift as many students across the country began learning remotely. Products like laptops, webcams, and keyboards topped many class lists, but as the 2021-22 school year shapes up to be back in the classroom, those lists are looking a bit different once again.
To add to that, not only is there going to be a change in what people are shopping for, but how they’re shopping will be different as well. The same goes for the holiday season. There will likely be a spike in the number of hybrid shoppers who perform both in-store and online shopping.
One of the main reasons online hasn’t totally taken over is that there remains a certain wonder about visiting a physical storefront during a special time of year that evokes an emotional response from consumers. Retailers can lean into these holidays and special occasions even more than usual to attract foot traffic and create memorable experiences that will leave a lasting impression.
Fred Towns is President of New Age Electronics, responsible for setting the company’s strategic direction and identifying new growth opportunities. Serving in this capacity since 2011, Towns oversees the organization’s business development, marketing, and customer service. With more than 35 years of experience in the consumer technology industry, Towns previously held the position of Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing at Panasonic Consumer Electronics Corp. He also sits on CTA’s Executive Board, an advisory committee that helps set public policy positions and priorities for the association, and serves as industry chair of the Anti-Defamation League’s National Consumer Technology division.