It’s no secret that the COVID-19 pandemic had a devastating effect on businesses globally. As a result, many needed to rethink their strategies to remain profitable and, in some cases, survive. Digital marketing is often one of the foundations of these strategies.
Simply put, at a time when more people are using the internet than ever before, it’s one of the most effective ways for businesses to get their products in front of the right consumers at the right time. In other words, it lets businesses meet consumers where they are and, in the process, increase their chances of making sales.
But digital marketing goes far further than just helping businesses. Over time, it’s also changed consumer behaviour and the ways consumers shop and interact with their favourite brands. In this post, we’ll look at how digital marketing changed consumer behaviour.
Because consumers have more information at their fingertips than ever before, it’s easy to see why they’re able to do more research. This has two major consequences for businesses.
For one, consumers can find information on and compare products before deciding on what to buy. As a result, they don’t make buying decisions solely on the reputation of a brand but more based on what a product can offer them.
Another consequence is that consumers are far more willing to experiment with new products and services compared to a few years ago. This, in turn, opens the door for many start-ups or businesses with lesser-known products.
As a result of the wealth of information available to consumers, the vast range of products available, and their willingness to experiment as described above, they’re often less loyal to a specific brand.
Ultimately, this means that competition between brands is now fiercer than ever before and brands will need to stand out from the crowd, not only based on their product but also their customer support, value proposition, and more.
Consumers have always enjoyed the opportunity to interact with their favourite brands. The thing is, with online communication available almost anywhere and the popularity of social media, this interaction is now easier than ever.
As a result, consumers now expect more engagement. In other words, they want to share their opinions and feedback with brands on social media or instantly express how they feel on review sites. The companies that can benefit most from this are those willing to engage and interact with their customers across platforms.
Consumers now expect more personalisation compared to only a few years ago. In simple terms, they want information, messaging, and products specifically tailored to them. It’s simple, they don’t want to spend ages researching and buying the products they want.
For businesses, this means that they should implement the right tools and strategies to give consumers the content, messaging, and products they need when they need them.
Apart from expecting more personalisation, nowadays, consumers also expect more convenience. In other words, they expect to find information quickly and easily. And here artificial intelligence (AI) can play a crucial role where it can predict what consumers will buy.
Businesses that implement the right tools, like recommender systems, for example, will be able to put the right products in front of the right consumers at the right time. Not only does this make the customer journey more convenient for customers, but also ups the business’s chances of making a sale.
Nowadays, digital marketing has moved way past being a nice-to-have and has established itself firmly in the necessity camp. Simply put, it allows businesses to place their products in front of the customers who are more likely to buy them.
But it has also changed customer behaviour with customers now expecting more engagement, more personalisation, and more convenience. The businesses that can provide this will be best positioned to benefit most.