Effects of COVID-19 on electronic commerce

Everything at the moment revolves around the worrisome COVID-19, even for the sector of stores or online businesses. Because in effect, it has a repercussion from which they cannot be abstracted to quantify their effects on society in general. In this sense, it must be emphasized that the coronavirus is an incidence that brings with it that most of the e-commerce that operate in Spain continue to function almost as before this crisis began.

The irruption of the coronavirus in the routine has confined millions of consumers to their home. Without the possibility of going out, except to go to work, fill the tank, go to the pharmacy, take pets for a walk, buy medicine at the pharmacy or go to the supermarket. The purchases that can be made in person are reduced to those products that can be found in a food store, or hypermarket. In some cases this may not be enough and other things are needed, for which online businesses continue to provide their services.

This is a first consequence of what COVID-19 has brought and that of course benefits online stores across the country. Beyond that they have increased sales of the products, services or articles that start up this type of digital companies. In this context,

COVID-19 in the digital business

But this year will go down in history due to the appearance of this dangerous virus that is going to change habits in the consumer sector: But how will it specifically affect a store or business with these characteristics? Well, according to a survey carried out, sales through digital media increased between 30% and 50% since March 3, when the first COVID-19 infection was announced in the most relevant countries in the world.

From this reality, online platforms offer the option of receiving a wide range of products, services or items without leaving home. With the additional advantage that the products they have in physical stores are also sold on the digital platform. This represents a relaunch in their respective business lines.

As with the implementation of powerful tools in the form of technological applications that has a wide range of home delivery, games, audiovisual or cultural content, among some of the most relevant. From this point of view, it optimizes the user's location search through the GPS system. With an increase in technological means to boost demand from customers or users.

Change chip

In any case, the effects that the disease will have will change the way of marketing products, for example, the use of cash will decrease and the use of cards will skyrocket, as well as transactions through the applications that these platforms carry over the Internet. Where it is very important that you keep in mind that from this precise moment that their most relevant contributions are the following that we expose you below:

  • Your ability to reach more points on the planet.
  • It covers different lines of business, from leisure and entertainment proposals to purely technological ones. If exclusions of any kind practically.
  • Its impact will not be so negative compared to the offer offered by physical or more conventional stores.
  • They better respond to the needs that exist in homes at a time when family life is centered in these closed spaces.
  • Savings on purchases by reducing your rates between approximately 10% and 20%, in relation to all business lines.
  • And finally, you cannot forget that this is a trend in consumption that grows year after year and that in this economic crisis it may even be reinforced in your business interests.

Impact on large e-commerce companies

The Chinese e-commerce giant, Alibaba, has recognized this Thursday that the advance of the coronavirus outbreak (Covid-19) will have an impact on its business, both in revenue and growth. The company has warned that the epidemic is weighing on consumers and sellers, which will translate into revenue cuts as early as this quarter.

Other international e-commerce giants are immersed in the same situation. Giving a very objective reference to the real state of the online sector around the world. Although it is important to emphasize that Jesse Cohen, an analyst at Investing.com, has assured Reuters that Alibaba's profits will take a hit "in the next two quarters, although the business is strong enough to overcome this slump."

Reality in which the sector finds itself

The management in an ecommerce requires a series of conditions to protect the interests of this professional activity in online format. Where this crisis is, it can open up new business opportunities, although not without risks.

As established in Royal Decree 463/2020 of March 14, the operation of the delivery service of food at home and basic necessities at the national level is maintained in the situation of state of alarm due to the situation of health crisis caused by COVID-19.

Faced with this situation, STUART, the on-demand technology platform that connects any type of business with the largest fleet of independent messenger partners, has implemented precautionary measures in line with the official recommendations of the Ministry of Health, both to its own employees and to the independent messengers who collaborate with the platform.

With the aim of offering a service that alleviates the social and economic effects of the difficult situation in the country, the platform will continue to be active so that all its collaborators who decide to connect to continue obtaining income.

To carry out the activity during the quarantine, the company has implemented a “Zero Contact” policy consisting of avoiding contact between the messenger and the receiver, the measures are:

Before starting to distribute it is recommended to wear disinfectant gel and latex gloves to avoid direct contact with the skin. As well as always wearing a motorcycle protection helmet and a mask to protect access to the respiratory tract, total cleaning of clothing and material used and daily disinfection of the box / trunk.

During collection:

No cash management. Orders that require cash management may be rejected or re-assigned without this having any effect.

  • Order packing. Customers have been informed of the need to use fully sealed bags. The bags will be held by the sides (not by the handles).
  • Recommended clothing. It is recommended not to remove the helmet and to use latex gloves / disinfected hands when picking up an order. Motorcycle gloves are not valid as a sanitary instrument. It is recommended not to use them in delivery or order handling.
  • Use of the thermal bag. Once the order is collected, immediately place it in the thermal bag and close it completely. This must be well disinfected with the corresponding products.
  • Avoid the accumulation of distributors at the collection points. Keep 1.5 meters away. 1 single person inside the premises and the queue outside at 1.5m distance between distributors.

During delivery:

Recommended safety distance. When delivering an order, it is recommended to leave it at the recipient's door after notifying him by the doorbell. Leave the order at the door and wait with a minimum distance of 2 meters until the recipient picks up the order.

No need for signature. As mentioned above, it is recommended to suspend the signature request and mark directly with an X once the order has been delivered.

Maximum attention to comments. Information on how to make the delivery may appear in the comments of an order, for example: "Ring the bell and leave the goods on the landing." It is vitally important to follow these indications.

Disposable support for delivery. In case the establishment offers a napkin or other disposable support, this can be used in the delivery of an order so that the packed merchandise does not touch the ground directly.

Likewise, Stuart is applying the recommendations of the health authorities to adapt to any eventuality.

“Through the“ Zero Contact ”policy, we want, above all, to take care of couriers who wish to continue carrying out their activity independently. It is essential that we all follow the guidelines of the Ministry of Health in order to control the spread of the virus ", in the words of David Guasch, General Director of Stuart in Spain. “From the Stuart team we want to convey the recommendation to preserve one's health and safety in any other circumstance. In case of suffering some of the symptoms, we recommend that the messengers seek medical attention immediately and follow the recommendations of health professionals ”. Where this crisis is, it can open up new business opportunities, although not without risks.


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