Report: COVID-19 drives new online customers and HK/SG fashion purchases

A new report has shown how the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the distribution of patrons, with nearly half of online sales for brands in March driven by new customers and fashion getting a boost. 

Tech firm Emarsys has published the "COVID-19 Commerce Insight" report, a joint project between Emarsys and data analytics provider GoodData. Presenting the impact of COVID-19 on consumer confidence, it's part of the partnership's larger COVID-19 Commerce Insight project. The report draws on more than a billion engagements and 400 million transactions in 120 countries, including the UK, and the US, providing a global and regional picture of eCommerce activity and trends; a key indicator of overall economic conditions in these unprecedented times.

The report shows that 43% of sales were made by first-time buyers, while the remainder of sales were made up of second-time buyers (5%), active repeat customers (23%), defecting customers (14%), and inactive customers (8%).

emarsys march active customers

Before you grab a calculator, the report does concede that the percentages don't add up to 100%, as some customers checked out as a guest during their online shopping journey,  meaning that the report could not identify which categories they belonged to.

“It’s now more important than ever to be able to quickly distinguish new customers from loyal ones, so you can target them with campaigns in the right way and do so quickly. Artificial intelligence is a huge asset to marketers here because it can analyse your entire customer base quickly to determine who’s new and who’s loyal. Then you can set up separate automated digital campaigns for each type of customer," said Alex Timlin, senior vice president of verticals at Emarsys.

The report has also included data on online fashion shopping in Hong Kong and Singapore. As employees from both regions were advised to work from home during working days and stay at home as much as possible, many consumers changed their behaviours and purchased more products online. From late-March onwards, online activities in the fashion and accessories sector increased significantly, particularly in Singapore. 


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