45% of Consumers Say They Have Permanently Changed Their Shopping Habits to Spend More Online During COVID-19 Lockdown

Orlando, Florida (May 12, 2020) – IZEA Worldwide, Inc. (NASDAQ: IZEA), operator of IZEAx®, the premier online marketplace connecting brands and publishers with influential content creators, released its latest research initiative, “Open for Business: Consumer Intent as States Lift COVID-19 Restrictions” today. The first of its kind, this U.S. consumer study examines the impacts of COVID-19 “Stay-at-Home” orders and contrasts responses from those living in “Open States” and “Closed States.” At the time of this survey there were different public health restrictions in effect among States across the country. “Open States” have begun to reopen businesses such as restaurants, bars, and hair salons to the public, while “Closed States” had not yet at the time of survey.

The new report is available to download for free, here: izea.com/covid19/open

IZEA fielded the study from May 6th to May 7, 2020 as many U.S. consumers were permitted to visit local establishments for the first time in months. The majority of those who participated in the study (62.9%) said they left their house for those items that they deemed ‘essential’ while stay-at-home orders were in effect. Results are based on the responses from 1,214 U.S. Internet users ages 18-60+. The special report is the fifth in a series of groundbreaking consumer research studies that IZEA has published since the Coronavirus pandemic began to take hold of American consumers in late March. 

Key Statistics for Consumer Confinement Include:

  • Consumers are venturing out. 18.9% of all respondents surveyed on April 9th  reported that they had not left their home at all, up 1,020 basis points from 8.7% of those surveyed on May 7th.
  • “Open States” are seeing more activity. 5.2% of those in “Open States” haven’t left their home at all vs. 10.7% of those in “Closed States.”
  • Job loss likely contributing to the desire to reopen. 37% of those in “Open States” report that they have lost their job or seen their compensation reduced vs. 32% of those in “Closed States.”

Key Statistics for Internet Use Include:

  • More important than sex. 61% of all respondents indicated that they would give up sex before giving up the Internet while impacted by Coronavirus. That number jumps to 70% for those ages 18-29.
  • High monetary value. On average, consumers say they would need to be paid $15,282 to give up the Internet for a one-month period.
  • Social media users looking to upgrade connectivity. Social media users are up to 5.1x more likely to be considering the upgrade of their Internet service or Wi-Fi hardware, with 51.3% of Twitch users looking to upgrade.

Key Statistics for The Travel Industry Include:

  • Hotels will remain largely vacant. Only 7% of all respondents say that they plan to visit a hotel in the next 1-4 weeks.
  • Air travel will remain minimal. Only 5% of all respondents say that they plan to visit a hotel in the next 1-4 weeks, with 30% of those who say they normally travel by air saying they will wait over a year to get back on an airplane.
  • Theme park attendance will be low. Only 7% of parents with minor children living at home say that they plan to visit a theme park in the next 1-4 weeks, only 5.5% of all respondents indicated the same.

Key Statistics for The Home Improvement Industry Include:

  • Concern about third parties in the home persists. 41% of those in both “Open States” and “Closed States” say they would not allow a professional service person to enter their home at this time.
  • Consumers are investing in their home. 23% of all respondents indicated that they plan to invest $251-1,000 on a home improvement project, and 8% indicated that they intend to spend more than $1,000.
  • Lawn care equipment is in demand. 17% of all respondents who previously outsourced lawn care say they are now taking on the responsibility of lawn and garden care themselves.

Key Statistics for The Consumer Electronics Industry Include:

  • Social Media users are buying new laptops. Social media users are up to 3.2x more likely to have purchased or be considering the purchase of a new laptop as compared to those who don’t use social media.
  • Headphones helping consumers to create their own space. 15% of all respondents surveyed on May 7th indicated that they have bought or are likely to buy headphones, up from 11% from those surveyed on April 9th.
  • Arts and crafts may be helping drive printer sales. Purchase intent for printers has nearly doubled over the past month, from 5% on April 9th to 8% on May 7th.

“While many states have begun to lift restrictions on stay-at-home orders, it appears that consumer behavior has been forever altered by Coronavirus,” said Ted Murphy, Founder and CEO of IZEA. “Internet usage was high before COVID-19, but it has become an even more essential need for consumers that have been confined to their home. Seventy-five percent of all consumers surveyed indicated that they are spending more time online since being impacted by Coronavirus, with only 3.4% saying that they are spending less time. That near-term change in Internet consumption is to be expected, but the longer-term implications have only just begun to be felt. Forty-five percent of respondents indicated that they have permanently changed their shopping habits to spend more online. That number climbs to 50% for those 19-44 years old, the primary focus for most consumer brands.”

“Coronavirus has forced behavioral changes that may have occurred over years or decades to happen over a few short months,” continued Murphy. “This change will be very challenging for smaller local retailers and those larger organizations that have not yet adopted an Internet-centric consumer strategy. At the same time, those who have invested resources in their online shopping experience and espoused modern views towards ordering and fulfilment for goods and services have an opportunity to thrive in the new environment that COVID-19 creates, both now and in the future.”

To view all of IZEA’s COVID-19 consumer research in full visit izea.com/covid19.

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