DIFFICULTIES FACING BY INDIA DUE TO COVID-19 LOCKDOWN 

On March 25, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a 21- day nationwide lockdown in response to the COVID-19 pandemic which is effecting the various economic field of India like E- Retailers, Grocery stores, online shopping platform, etc. and India’s poor struggling to eat.

This nationwide lockdown is badly affecting India’s economic growth, as the coronavirus lockdown is causing significant disruption across multiple sectors, including manufacturing, oil, financial, etc

According to latest Economy forecast, the probability of countries entering into recession and companies going bankrupt has increased and India is likely to remain decoupled from the global meltdown.

Lockdown and restriction on commercial activities and people gatherings are likely to strongly impact on global and domestic growth from march 2020 onwards.

On the price scenario, the slowdown in demand and production activities, a sharp fall in the global price of crude oil, and price decreases in other major goods such as energy, base metals and fertilizers among others are expected to exert downward pressure on inflation.

Leading companies in India are proactively assuring employees that they will be taken care of financially while the lockdown continues or even gets extended.

Some of India’s legions of poor and others suddenly thrown out of work by a nation-wide stay at home order began receiving aid, as both public and private groups worked to blunt the impact of efforts to curb the coronavirus outcome.

India the finance ministry announced a 1.7 trillion economic stimulus package that will help to deliver grains and lentil rations for three months to 800 million people, some 60% of the world’s second most popular country.

Delivery of essential items via- e-commerce is facing challenges since the 2nd day of the 21- day lockdown.

While the government has allowed delivery of all essential goods including food, pharmaceuticals and medical equipment through e-commerce, online platforms like Amazon India, Gofers’, big basket, and milk basket is facing disruption in delivery to their customers.

Due to the impact of the corona virus on Indians, a majority of respondents are not getting all their essential groceries via food retail apps.

On the backdrop of 21-day lockdown announced by Central government and self-imposed quarantine in many homes in urban India, there has been a significant ups and downs in online shopping behavior across the country. With Corona virus rapidly crawling into the skin of humanity in India and across the globe, businesses are most likely to be severely impacted in the near term as government has ordered complete shutdown of malls, shops etc.

However, in these times of a medical pandemic, e-commerce businesses in the country have witnessed some unprecedented shifts as some sectors of the online business saw a massive surge in demands, while some tanked upside down.

According to a report by media advertising company Group M, online sale of daily essentials and electronics (TVs, laptops, gaming consoles etc) skyrocketed, while their massive plunge was seen in fashion items, beauty products and travel bookings due to the Coronavirus lockdown.

Here are 4 key observations in online shopping trends due to COVID-19 outbreak:

i. Daily essentials categories see a massive 200 percent hike in searches driven by hygiene and healthcare needs.

ii. Lifestyle categories sales witnessed a drop between 15 to 30 percent with an increase in consumer price sensitivity.

iii. Purchase growth skewed to family vs. individual purchases.

iv. Increase in searches skewed to brand agnostics.





The Group m report further highlighted that the online demand for essential items skyrocketed with a 100 percent increase in searches for hyper-local apps such as Gofers’ and Big Basket. The study also observed that there was 80 per cent increase in daily essential e-commerce sales and a 20 percent hike in average Cart value of such items.

Overview of rising & falling trends:


Rising TrendsFalling Trends
Sanitizers & masks

Staples

Ready to eat

Soaps

Household disinfectants
Chocolates & snacks

Hair & beard oil & styling

Hairstyling & coloring

Beauty skincare

Protein supplements

Lifestyle categories have taken a massive hit due to nationwide lockdown and COVID-19 pandemic over the last few weeks. According to the study, there has been a substantial decrease in fashion, beauty and home-related e-commerce searches. However, a rise in demand for fitness equipment, indoor games, toys, etc has been noticed.

Electronic categories, however, witnessed a mixed bag with a 25 percent hike in e-commerce searches for laptops, a 100 percent increase in DTH searches was observed. E-commerce search for Smartwatches, on the other hand, saw a decrease of 30 percent in recent days.


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