Despite global lockdowns lifting, COVID-19 has increased the pace of digital transformation exponentially, and consumers have shown a substantial step-change in a more permanent adoption of technology into their everyday lives. Digital has been filling the social distancing gap and social media stands out as the dominant source of influence over our free time according to digital transformation consultancy Publicis Sapient research released today, the Digital Life Index, with digital channels inspiring new action and bringing people together for shared experiences at the height of lockdown. Payments have become a health concern as contactless payment methods became a top priority for customers, dictating where they shop and spend as well as shining a spotlight on tap-to-pay credit cards. Online shoppers may have increased in number, with 71% stating they have purchased online more than usual, but amid economic uncertainty, buying priorities have changed and brand loyalty has taken on a new meaning.
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Key takeaways from the survey
- Digital channels became a way for people to remain connected, with the lines between food, entertainment and learning blurred– social media fueled new activities and bridged a social gap.
- YouTube taught first-time gardeners how to grow their own food; it was also the top destination for mindfulness and meditation. Of the 22% of respondents that started practicing mindfulness or meditation, over half (52%) did it through YouTube. The story with home workouts was similar, with 56% of consumers using YouTube as a resource.
- Contactless payments and experiences are in high demand with 61% of respondents citing contactless as a key factor in their grocery store selection.
- Online shopping increased for consumers globally. In the past three months, 71% of people shopped more online than they usually do, and 48% think they will shop online more in the future.
- Patients cautiously adopt telehealth and see it as a safe, convenient alternative.
Teresa Barreira, CMO of Publicis Sapient, stated, “We conducted the research from the standpoint that all consumer decisions are made by people. Their needs are beyond a single utility. Their expectations and desire for ease and convenience drive their choices. Digitally centric brands place an increased value on the holistic journey of consumers and seek to improve their lives. The Index gives us a closer understanding of behaviors and enables us to provide business leaders with a unique lens into consumers’ lives to help them understand and respond with data-driven insights.”
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