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Infographic: Where Consumers Expect to Spend Beyond the Pandemic

  • Rob Patterson

Aside from a few select categories, consumer spending has stalled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, as states continue to loosen restrictions and consumers head back out into the world, we’ll see an uptick in spending in areas outside of food and household goods. Below, we take a look at where the pandemic has changed consumer attitudes on spending and evaluate where we could see long-term changes in behavior.

 

Where Consumers Expect to Spend in the Coming Months

 

Here are four things you need to know about consumer spending in the coming months:

 

Update on Auto

Global sales for automotive brands were down 4% last year, which created cause for concern at the outset of 2020. Now, economic concerns surrounding COVID-19 have further dented demand by 42% for this year.

  • Pre-Pandemic: 13% of consumers planned to buy a car in 2020
  • Post-Pandemic: 7.5% of consumers still intend to do so

Even interest from the biggest auto enthusiasts is tepid. On Reddit’s cars page, mentions of purchase intent decreased 13% from January and February to March and April.

 

Taking Time to Travel

The travel industry has been hit particularly hard by the pandemic, causing consumers to cancel or postpone plans for their next getaway. Where do consumers stand on travel now?

  • Pre-Pandemic: 43% of consumers said they planned to book or go on a vacation in 2020
  • Post-Pandemic: 22.4% of consumers still intend to do so.

For those still planning to go on vacation in 2020, the primary motivations are to see family and friends (52%) and the need for a change of scenery (45%). Social listening indicates that camping, hiking, and backpacking are popular alternatives as traditional travel takes a backseat.

 

Room for Home Improvement

With consumers across the globe spending more time at home, home improvement has been one area where activity has continued.

  • 3% of consumers still plan to do large-scale home improvements
  • 8% of consumers still plan to buy new furniture
  • 9% of consumers still plan to move houses or apartments

If employees across the globe continue to work from home, the home improvement trend could stick. Marie Kondo-like home organization and other DIY projects like painting have seen a huge boost in search and on social media.

 

Other Areas of Interest

  • Finances: 68% of those who have tried to save more during the pandemic will continue to do so once it is contained
  • Clothing: 73% of people who planned to buy new clothes or shoes this year still plan to
  • Holidays: 44% of consumers say they’ll be spending less on holiday gifts and celebrations compared to last year
  • Online Shopping: Over 20% of consumers have bought clothes, groceries, or toiletries online when they wouldn’t have normally done so. Seventy-three percent of those consumers intend to continue doing so once the pandemic is contained.