7 Biggest Dominant Consumer Trends in 2020
By Madz D.
For many consumer-oriented companies, this year was make-or-break. The COVID-19 pandemic pushed several companies previously weakened by the "retail apocalypse." at the same time, and the U.S.-China trade war affected them into bankruptcy.
Businesses with the mindset to move forward seemed to weather the economic storm and, in some cases, flourish. By catering to consumer trends, they did so. Those businesses developed before the pandemic but were also elevated or possibly exacerbated by the health crisis. Here are five defining consumer trends of 2020, according to NASDAQ:
The end of social gatherings and non-essential travels
The pandemic hit most challenging those businesses that rely on travel and social gatherings. Many hotels and airlines experienced double-digit revenue loss as cities faced lockdowns and stay-at-home rules.
Marriott International's revenue declined to about 46% year over year in the first nine months of the year, while Delta Airlines' revenue plunged 63% amid the same period.
The growth of the stay-at-home economy
More people were ordered to stay at home and work remotely. That's why video communications became useful, and the time spent on mobile applications and video games soared. Zoom and Peloton shares rose nearly 490% and 730% this year. However, investors should know that both high-growths will face tough year-over-year comparisons next year as the pandemic passes.
Streaming services had an accelerated shift
Movie theater chains are clashing with companies like Netflix even before the pandemic came. The old way of watching movies through theaters versus through the streaming platforms are already battling.
But this year, movie theaters struggled with the shutdowns while streaming services soared.
Netflix surpasses 195 million global subscribers, and Disney's different streaming services reached 120 million paid subscribers. Disney released major films like Hamilton, Artemis Fowl, and Mulan, all initially slated for theaters. At&T recently followed Disney's plan of simultaneous releases for Warner Bros' movies in theaters and Disney's HBO Max next year.
Earlier this month, Money Times reported Disney shares rose over 12% as investors cheered the content flex for its upgrade to global direct-consumer streaming.
The pandemic decreased shopping sprees
The pandemic impacted sales of non-essential products. Big retailers such as Target, Costco, and Walmart benefited from the shift. Simultaneously, bored consumers stapled giants like Clorox and Kimberly Clark that had a sudden acceleration revenue growth in the quarters.
An accelerating shift toward e-commerce platforms
The e-commerce platforms, in-store pickup options, and logistics capabilities have been widely expanded by retailers like Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, Target, and lululemon Athletica. These companies fared far better than companies that did not develop their strategies. The decentralized online marketplace also flourished as many retailers struggle with the supply chain and logistics barriers throughout the year.
Smaller businesses were also forced to ramp up their spending on Shopify, which gives tools for running online stores, managing marketing campaigns, and processing orders. Year over year, Shopify's revenue skyrocketed to 82% in the first nine months of 2020, and its stock almost tripled.
On the contrary, restaurants flocked to delivery platforms like DoorDash, which Money Times recently reported to have a whopping 200% year-over-year jump in orders in the first nine months of the year, to gain their losses of on-premise diners.