Get a clear picture of consumers’ heightened expectations in the wake of COVID-19

GfK Consumer Pulse surveys are uncovering a laundry list of requirements for brands and retailers

COVID-19 has set US culture on edge, raising concerns that companies and consumers never expected to face. From airborne germs to shortages of paper towels and baking soda, the pandemic has forced Americans to adopt new levels of vigilance in the most mundane areas of life. And consumers are transferring these worries and demands to the brands and retailers they rely on.

With its Consumer Pulse research, GfK has been tracking the needs of everyday Americans at a time of unexpected extremes and anxiety. Many of our findings provide essential guidance for businesses, especially as we begin to move from lockdown to opening up in different regions of the country. We found, for example, that 73% of US consumers expect retailers to adopt core hygiene protocols, and that 49% think stores should provide wipes and sanitizers to clean people’s hands, shopping carts, and baskets. Read more here.

We also learned that Americans are profoundly split when it comes to the messages they feel brands should adopt as the crisis eases. Almost half (45%) said that companies should return to pre-virus themes, so that they can “forget” that COVID-19 ever happened and try to resume the lives they had before. But even more (55%) feel that we now live in “a different world,” and that brands need to reflect the new, immutable realities of post-virus existence. Read more here.     

GfK will continue to share findings from its biweekly Consumer Pulse studies – write to marketing@gfk.com if you would like to subscribe to these updates.