The relatively sudden and enigmatic Coronavirus is making its way around the globe right now, and it’s taking every facet of our lives by storm. A YouGov survey that was taken between February 28th and March 2nd of this year showed that, of 1000 Americans, 93% said they had heard of ‘Coronavirus’ or COVID-19’ – a stark contrast to that of a few weeks prior. One in three Americans said that they are scared they will contract the virus. 57% of those questioned said they were taking actions to protect themselves. While there is no vaccine at this moment in time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has provided guidelines to help people from contracting the virus.
Opportunity For Some Industry
While the spreading of the virus isn’t exactly ideal, many businesses in certain verticals will be able to capitalize on such an event. Let us look at the household goods industry, and Lysol in particular:
Resource from: Lysol Home Page
Americans who have shown concern about COVID-19 are much more likely to buy more Lysol products. Between February 8th and February 25th, the purchase intent within that group of people doubled to 5%. As the notoriety of the virus began to rise, the public began to learn more about certain household products – 87% of that group became aware of the Lysol brand at the end of February compared to 79% at the beginning of the month.
Production data from PENCIL ONE eCommerce Photography shows that, in the last two months, the number of photos created for household goods companies is 2.452 times more than it was previously.
Now The Actual Situation Is...
As the virus is spreading, more and more essentials are selling out across the country. It’s not just the United States that is suffering from this kind of shortage as people from most countries on the planet are flocking to stores to pick up more groceries than are perhaps necessary. The idea is that they’ll soon be house-ridden, meaning they cannot pick up essentials at later dates. This then has a knock-on effect for both the sellers and the consumers.
As the coronavirus begins to spread further, more and more people will refuse to leave their homes – there may even be a law prohibiting them from leaving if things escalate further. That said, people will then, obviously, reduce their visits to public places such as supermarkets, grocery stores, and recreational facilities. They’ll instead look to purchase their goods and services via online stores. Of course, everyday necessities will be in demand, but many products that help deal with the threat of COVID-19 will see a huge spike in sales. Items like hand sanitizers and soaps, toilet paper and paper towels, sprays, and laundry detergent will all be demanded by baying consumers.
Resource from: Peapod Home Page
During this period, bloggers and other such writers have taken to their computer screens to write about the kinds of products that have already sold out offline and they can only be found online.
Here is an example: 10 household essentials are selling out across the country-here's where to get them
Whether this spike in online activity will influence the market and people’s behaviors going forward remains to be seen. It may change the landscape entirely, or it may just be a way of purchasing goods for the time being.
How Coronavirus Is Impacting eCommerce
An Obvious Increase In Online Revenue
When the outbreak began in China, it inadvertently created a boon for e-commerce as shoppers stuck at home bought their goods online. Let’s use JD.com, China’s largest online retailer (as well as the country’s biggest Internet company by revenue), as an example. Sales of fresh food on JD.com, which is partly owned by Tencent, jumped 215% to nearly 15,000 tonnes during a 10-day period, ending on February 2nd. We mentioned before how there would be a huge hike in online sales, and this data absolutely shows it. That is an astonishing increase in such a small amount of time. A huge company like JD.com is just one example, but there were many other online retailers experiencing similar boosts in revenue.
Resource from: JD.COM Home Page
Suning.com co. is another online retailer that experienced a positively abnormal increase in sales due to the virus. Suning.com co. ranks among the top three Chinese B2C companies, so it has experienced its fair share of demand. Data shows that online sales of disinfectant produced by Dettol rose by 643% year-on-year between February 10th and February 13th via Suning.com CO’s marketplace.
Resource from: Dettol Home Page
An Expanded Online Selling Scale
This entire saga means businesses that both already sell and those that do not can benefit. Businesses that already have online stores or that are exclusively so can transfer more products from offline to online sales. Digital marketplaces are very convenient as it’s so easy for a transaction to be completed. This means more money can be made at a speedy rate. Current e-commerce businesses can also expand their online selling scale by utilizing more marketplaces. There are many different third-party websites and apps that allow products to be advertised and sold on them. This means customers are now able to notice and, later on, buy products from places other than the businesses own website.
For companies that have zero experience in selling goods online, they’re able to shift their work into the digital world. It’s cost-efficient to sell goods online, so offline companies would receive a better return on investment when selling through the power of the internet. Selling on the likes of Amazon, eBay, Wayfair, Bed Bath & Beyond would make a lot of sense for them.
Resource from: Congress Addresses Food Insecurity in Its Legislative Response to COVID-19/ civileats
More Emphasis On Product Imagery And Support
As more eyes will be on computer and phone screens, the demand for quality service will be higher – it’s simply human nature. As time progresses, the requirements in terms of both product photos and photo vendors will change. For instance, companies that are primarily offline will be transferring more products to online markets – this means they’ll need more high-quality photos at their disposal. As the competition will be ramped up, each and every eCommerce business will then need to have a large number of product photos delivered to them in a short space of time.
Product photography vendors will have to be a little more switched on during this time as eCommerce sellers will need to have stable and continuous support while their demand is high. Deadlines need to be met, so the partnership struck will have to be one that is reliable, transparent, and productive.
As sellers are expanding their digital reach in this time, both current eCommerce businesses and businesses with limited online-selling experience will want to increase their online selling scale by utilizing more marketplaces. Their pursuit of the right product photography vendor becomes more critical at this point as they’ll need to have adequate experience backing up their businesses. Different online marketplaces require different kinds of photography; high-quality vendors will know exactly how to handle each and how best to portray certain items.
As more eyes are on the eCommerce scene during this quarantined time, we know that images will need to be absolutely stellar in order to get customers on side.
Outsource Photography Is Trending
As the coronavirus is increasing in terms of its reach and, thus, its overall potency, it’s not the best idea for businesses to gather in a close contact situation. It’s too risky as all it takes is one person to contract the virus and spread it around the workplace. That said, remote work is now the most popular way of working in most parts of the world (for the time being).
Outsourcing product photo work is popular right now for many more reasons, however. The virus is one thing, but working with a photo vendor will allow a business to, as previously mentioned, receive stable and continuous support while receiving a large amount of photography in a timely manner. Their expertise and experience mean that sellers can focus on what they’re good at without worrying about this kind of aspect failing. Independent vendors will also be able to provide you with new and cutting edge work as they’ll have the inside track on all of the fresh changes, trends and marketplace requirements.
Having a good photo vendor in your list of contacts would also be beneficial as they would be able to provide you with good ideas and sensible suggestions regarding ways of boosting sales overall. That kind of advice could prove valuable in the long run.
As more sellers flood to the eCommerce business, the competition of online selling will be fiercer and fiercer – even if for just a few months until this COVID-19 virus disappears. That said, it’s vital that businesses switch on and up their eCommerce game – they need to make sure the way in which they show off their items is to a fantastic standard, and a product photography business will help that a lot. They need to make these kinds of aspects count – every eCommerce seller should be aware of new trends and stand firmly at the front of them as they will not want to fall behind competitors at any time.