Previously, most people took their primary needs for granted, because the situation allowed most of them to take care of it quite easily. Since COVID-19, consumers started to re-evaluate their position in Maslow's pyramid of needs and a new light is shed on what people really need and what is necessary in life. As the impact of the crisis is so immense, it will take a while before consumers will go up to the higher levels of the pyramid again. But how should retailers leverage this consumer behaviour?
Before diving into the level of primary needs a broader definition of Maslow's hierarchy of needs must be given. The five levels of this model are all different motivations of human needs. People need to satisfy the lower needs first and will then naturally progress on to a higher level. The pyramid starts with 'primary needs' and moves sequentially towards 'safety & security', 'belonging', 'status & self-esteem' and 'self-actualisation'. The lowest level, 'primary needs', is about the physical needs of human beings, such as food, water, sleep and warmth.
Consumers' level of needs changed significantly since COVID-19 and this created immediate effects. In threatening situations like this, people have a natural tendency to stockpile to meet their primary needs. This resulted in bulk purchasing - toilet paper and hand sanitiser became the scarcest items worldwide.
At the end of March 2020, BrandLoyalty and IceMobile activated its unique global network in food retail to study consumer behavioural changes resulting from COVID-19. In contrast to most studies around COVID-19, this study emphasises the qualitative insights and highlights the 'why' behind consumers' actions. This approach gives a peek into the 'new normal' of food retail and shows which consumer changes are temporary or permanent. To gain more insights into the new normal in food retail, feel free to request the full report below.
To learn more about the 5 themes retailers must consider to stay relevant after COVID-19, please reach out to your BrandLoyalty contact person or send an e-mail via the button below to receive the full report.Contact us now