E-Commerce in Time of COVID-19: Impacts on the Digital Marketing Industry

In Gennaro (2020), a whopping 12 to 24 million e-commerce websites are on the internet, and more and more are created each day. From these numbers, we can infer that there is an overwhelming market presence on the internet. The e-commerce channel became the most sought-after in these challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic as this is the first time in the history of mankind that more than seventy percent of countries are under lockdown which caused global unrest not only in the global economy but also in business which is the highest contributor to it — especially now that most physical events like fairs, expos, conventions, conferences, workshops, and trade shows, on top of physical stores and establishments, have been deferred or shut down quietly. Others’ long-established plans for events have fallen by the wayside while some have gone virtual and are trying to survive. It is not as majestic as it used to be and opportunities for business have slowly been dimmed like light.

Moreover, clients and customers hunkered down at their homes to minimize contact and prevent contagion. Being at home, the only possible way to practice their purchasing power and do business is via online shopping. This however led to the reduction of the physical store’s

manpower at a significant rate since lesser help is needed in the operations. Also, in an effort to conserve funds, marketing, and advertising expenditures are usually the first considerations. Scraped off the list, a huge amount can be saved although it can pose a threat as marketing, if not the most, is equally important as all the other business elements. 

In the U.S. Private Sector Job Quality Index, 37 million jobs in the United States have become vulnerable to mass layoffs. These are from the retail and clothing, hospitality, education, and travel industries that are deemed supplementary and non-essential for people. Those, however, who are currently employed can either be working in a setting with a skeletal and limited workforce or at home remotely. Estimated losses in the global economy total to $2.7 trillion and the only way to minimize this and prevent its rise is to do some major cost-cutting inevitably.

On a positive note, the pandemic has paved the way to grow the digital marketing industry exponentially and with more depth and focus. This only means that more and more business owners believe that digital marketing solutions are the key to business success in these challenging times. Digital marketing expenses have significantly risen over the years. Despite reduced marketing budgets due to the global crisis, the increase in value is because of its outstanding demand, that is why digital marketing channels still dominate and will still do in the future. 

The flexibility and versatility of digital marketing have shown great potential to lead and assist any business efforts today. Digital marketing caters majorly online and therefore makes itself impenetrable by the COVID-19. Additionally, because of tech innovations, digital marketing has been found to be the most beneficial industry of algorithm data which is much like a forensic trail of evidence that can determine your market, track them, their wants, and interests. With this hefty pool of data at your disposal, you can improve your campaign decisions and direct them to your target market with great ease and the best time to do the transition is now.

Naturally, because governments urged states of lockdown, everyone is confined at home and that online activity and traffic will spike with that. According to Business Insider (2020), Akamai, the content-delivery, cloud, and cybersecurity service provider, takes advantage of an increase in traffic of more than fifty percent compared to the daily average. Facebook, too, has been known to be the most popular social media turned e-commerce platform that small or big businesses alike utilize in their marketing strategies (Herhold, 2019). Obviously, the purpose of digital marketing strategy, as observed in both sites, is to bring foot traffic to your website or social media pages, so that you can engage with your target audience and convert them to sales.

According to Fishkin (2020), there is more attention online now than ever before because consumers are not only looking for content that is relevant to current events, but also anyone that comforts or entertains. Brands that strategize and invest now are expected to have a leg up on the competition in both the short and long term. Over sixty-one percent of marketers are reworking on their short-term strategies while nine percent are marking considerations for long-term change. Whatever route businesses take, the status is that everyone is really quick to decide improvements in terms of survivability. 

Positively, e-commerce helps in bridging consumers and businesses to keep the trade and barter rolling. Through multiple remediating strategies, somehow, businesses can get along despite the disruptions. Being a shelter to struggling businesses, the competition in the new normal marketplace only gets tougher every minute so businesses need to continuously innovate ways. 

Written By:

Bash Sarmiento

About the Author: :

Bash Sarmiento is a writer and an educator from Manila. He writes laconic pieces in the education, lifestyle, and health realms. His academic background and extensive experience in teaching, textbook evaluation, business management, and traveling are translated into his works.