3 Traits of Post-Coronavirus Consumers

In our last two blogs, we talked about Google’s new tool, Rising Retail Categories and 5 product categories that are skyrocketing during the pandemic. We focused on types of products people are buying and how product companies can capitalize on the new trends.

Now we want to focus on some of the ways that consumer behavior is changing during the pandemic and what a post-coronavirus consumer might look like.

Consumer Behavior

Consumer behavior is always evolving. However, the global Coronavirus pandemic has forced an abrupt change in human behavior that is carrying over into the way people shop.

In the report “Future Consumer 2022”, WGSN researchers have identified three major emotional sentiments emerging from the pandemic that are going to have a significant impact on consumer behavior going forward:

  1. Fear
  2. Isolation
  3. Optimism


  1. Fear

Fear, including concerns about climate change & financial uncertainty, was already a prominent concern for many consumers before the outbreak. Living in an increasingly hyper-connected world where tragedy and disaster spread around the world in a matter of minutes only makes fear worse.

This has been seen clearly with the coronavirus pandemic, leading to a contagion of anxiety, perpetuated by extreme uncertainty. This has manifested itself globally through panic buying, fake health claims circulating on social media, and individuals profiteering.” – WGSN

When the Covid-19 outbreak is over, people will likely be attracted to brands and products that help remove feelings of fear and uncertainty. This could be as simple as helping your customers save money. Many people will be attracted to brands that they trust and have had good experiences with. Providing a consistent brand image and customer experience will be increasingly important moving forward.

  1. Isolation

Desynchronized society is the concept that everyone has a routine, but on a slightly different schedule. For example, nine-to-five / five-days-per-week jobs has been a common routine for many workers in the past decade. While flexible work schedules an option have been increasing, this pandemic has caused a sudden and severe desynchronization of people typical schedules.

Coronavirus has exacerbated this by removing the functioning normality from cities, leaving urban centers hollow and void of people, and making normal life seem abstract and foreign” – WGSN

This sudden disruption has made many people feel unstable, disconnected and isolated. Similar to the fear sentiment, consumers of the future may seek brands that make them feel connected, grounded and stable.

  1. Optimism

With increased fear, uncertainty and instability, it has become a growing necessity for people to find ways to successfully adapting to adversity and changing conditions.

Coronavirus has provided time for mass reflection, and while fear has presided as the reigning sentiment, people are pulling together to look towards a more positive future. “Optimism isn’t uncool – it’s rebellious, and in times of uncertainty it’s a brave choice – WGSN

So far in 2020, there is not a lot to be optimistic about. It is for this exact reason that future consumers will intentionally focus on what brings them joy and pleasure. For this new club of optimists, craft a messaging of positivity around how to recover and evolve.


To Be Continued…

Our next blog will build on how these consumer emotions are creating new consumer personas and how that will affect your brand.


Blacksmith International is a global sourcing, manufacturing and supply chain management company.

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