How Will the Public Vaccine Rollout Affect E-Commerce?

By Sue Doerfler

Online shopping has skyrocketed in the past year due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, making it an extended “peak season” for e-commerce retailers and logistics providers — and it’s expected to continue in the near term. But once the vaccine has been rolled out to the public, will spending habits change?

Most consumers (56 percent of respondents) say they plan to shop more in store, while only one in three plans to shop less online, according to a recent survey and study by Dealaid.org, a Toronto-based deals site. COVID-19 Vaccine’s Impact On Retail & Ecommerce found that those planning to shop less online expect to spend US$171 less monthly on e-commerce purchases after the vaccine is rolled out to the public. Those planning to shop more in-store expect to spend about $176 monthly doing so.

Additionally, according to the survey, more than two-thirds (67.3 percent) of consumers indicated that the public COVID-19 vaccine rollout will not change their current online shopping habits. Currently, about half of consumers are buying clothing and accessories online, and after the public vaccine rollout, 53 percent say they will shop less online for these items.

Regarding in-store purchases, 43.9 percent of survey respondents indicated the public vaccine rollout won’t change their buying habits. Three-quarters of consumers plan to shop more for clothing and accessories, nearly 60 percent say they will buy more groceries, and nearly half expect to buy more household items in store after the public rollout.

However, consumers may not return physically to a store immediately after public rollout: 35 percent expect to return to store shopping three to six months afterwards, while 27 percent expect to do so within two months, the study found.

About the Author

Sue Doerfler

About the Author

As Senior Writer for Inside Supply Management® magazine, I cover topics, trends and issues relating to supply chain management.