Coronavirus and Economic Downturn – Consumer Sentiment Is Softening for Local Businesses

    COVID-19 crisis has led more consumers to support their economy by choosing local brands and small businesses.

    The Coronavirus pandemic has continued to rise, bringing the global recession and uncertainty in the marketplace. With this downturn, most people are opting to support their local economy by supporting the small businesses amid the COVID-19 crisis. The latest study from ZypMedia, titled “DATA ANALYSIS OF CONSUMER SENTIMENT FOR SMALL BUSINESSES DURING COVID-19” has revealed that – people are trying to support their communities by availing local products. ZypMedia in association with SurveyMonkey has surveyed more than 550 consumers in the US between 18 to 65 years.

    Over half of the consumers, nearly 53%, have reported that they are more likely to purchase from a small or local business instead of established national or international retailers today. As a matter of fact, 68% of these consumers also indicated that they would prefer local purchases, even in the post-pandemic world. Lately, ‘community’ has become a driving force among people globally.

    As per the respondents, supporting local businesses is highly essential and as a result, 84% of the people surveyed indicated supporting the local community, and 54% said the local economy was their force. Aman Sareen, CEO of ZypMedia as mentioned in the company blog post, “Local businesses are the engine of our economy, and it’s reassuring to see that Americans aren’t abandoning them during these uncertain times…How businesses market to their customers is more critical than ever as consumers believe in remaining loyal to their local businesses, while at the same time being conscious of their current economic and social distancing situations.” Clearly, it can be concluded that local customers remain loyal!

    Many small businesses had to close during this on-going situation or striving to operate. Hence, more consumers are taking the initiative to aid these merchants. The study has also
    compared on how consumers’ percentage of purchases made at national outlets versus local retailers has quickly changed.

    Thus, highly loyal local buyers tend to stick around even during an emergency. Similarly, the people who are used to spend more than 50% at the local businesses have reported staying the same during this phase. In addition, consumers who spent less than 25% on local merchants have surged by 15% during the Coronavirus pandemic. As mentioned in the report, “We asked all respondents how they typically learn about local businesses and what these businesses could be doing to get more patronage from them as consumers.

    On the advertising and media front, we saw a very clear lead for social media presence and awareness from 66% of the respondents, followed by 37% from online advertising. These numbers are not surprising, given how much time we are all spending on computers and mobile devices while sheltering-in-place.” Undoubtedly, local businesses have had the hardest hit by this pandemic. However, people are actively supporting them in the darkest times of widespread lockdowns and looking forward to their resumption.