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  • Writer's pictureAngela Chu

Lessons Learned From COVID: The importance of online retail

Without a doubt, COVID-19 has been a major disruption in our daily lives. With mass shutdowns and lockdowns across the globe, most businesses have suffered to make ends meet. With many businesses having no choice but to shut down amidst the pandemic, economic issues have arisen. Brick and mortar businesses around the globe have been battling to stay open but with shutdowns and health regulations, many have been turned to online retail with hopes of remaining open.

Online retail is nothing new. Customers have been adding items to online carts for years. But with the pandemic, many existing business owners have turned to online retail to stay open. This is largely due to the fact that the costs of running an online business are much lower compared to the costs of running a physical store. Reduced costs make it much easier for a business to earn money and keep itself afloat. This is a key factor of interest since many are suffering from financial problems during the pandemic.

During these unprecedented times, many have been working and learning at home. This translates to more hours spent in front of a screen! With those extra hours spent on the internet, consumers tend to spend more of their money purchasing items online. Reaching customers has always been one of many benefits of online retail. With mass lockdowns across the globe, potential customers cannot be reached with a physical store. With an online shop, reaching customers is a breeze! An online shop can easily attract customers from down the street and across the globe. It’s limitless!

With many businesses adapting, there have been a plethora of online shops for the average consumer to browse. In a sense, anything can be purchased with a click of a button. With supermarkets such as Walmart and T&T creating an app for customers to order online, getting groceries has never been easier. Clothing giants such as H&M have both a website and a mobile app for consumers to browse and purchase clothing without leaving their homes. Even IKEA has an app for customers to browse for furniture. Restaurants have also been adapting to online retail by offering online ordering through their own website or food delivery apps such as DoorDash or Skip The Dishes. With that said, online shops are not limited to only websites and apps. Some shops are embedded in social media such as Facebook marketplace and Instagram shops. Instagram shop is a marketplace that offers a wide variety of items. Items such as teas, makeup, clothing, and jewelry are all available for purchase. This streamlines shopping for many consumers.

From ordering dinner to updating wardrobes, online retail has been the lifeline of retail. It has kept many business owners afloat as well as introduced many to the thriving world of business. There are many factors that lead to success in the modern world of business. Having an online presence is only one of many.

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