New Qualtrics research suggests consumer preference for digital here to stay

Mumbai, November 24, 2020: With India continuing to navigate through the pandemic, a new market study from Qualtrics¹, a leader in customer experience and creator of the experience management category (XM), shows how COVID-19 has encouraged consumers to embrace digital channels in India. The study revealed that 82% of respondents are likely to rely on shopping online over the next 6 months.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, almost three-quarters of the respondents said they have increased the frequency they use online banking (73%) and purchased more online (70%). Shopping for groceries online also increased (64%). In contrast, 50% of respondents said the frequency at which they visit retailers has decreased. In further proof of how COVID-19 is changing the behaviours and preferences of consumers, 46% said it is likely they will pick up food from a restaurant rather than dining in.

Over the past 6 months, the number of people in India expecting COVID-19 to affect their day to day life for more than a year has almost tripled (17%, up from 6% in May 2020).

“After months of disruption, we are beginning to see new behaviors and preferences emerge that are likely to remain post-pandemic. There is no doubt that there has been a massive shift towards digital, making it critical for brands to ensure they are able to optimize the experience they deliver on their digital channels including mobile applications. Simultaneously, even though consumers in India are beginning to go back to some previous habits, high levels of ambiguity remain, meaning businesses must be able to understand and quickly respond to changing environments. Businesses can deal with this ambiguity using tools like Qualtrics to get an “always-on” and integrated understanding of their customer experience across touchpoints, equipping them with end-to-end insights to continually deliver superior customer experience.” said Harish Argarwal, Head of CX Strategy for Southeast Asia.

There are hints of things returning to the previous normal in the coming months, despite the majority of people (93%) still saying they are concerned by the pandemic. More than a third (41%) said they will visit the gym within the next 6 months, with going to the park (41%), regularly visiting a shopping mall (40%), and eating at a restaurant (40%) other behaviors likely to return in the same timeframe. Not surprisingly, travelling by air is the least likely behavior to return, with more than half saying it’s unlikely they’ll travel internationally (53%) by plane within the next 6 months.

Consumers have found themselves facing the new reality of digital disruption as they gravitate to ramp up their digital efforts seemingly overnight during the pandemic & lockdown phase.

¹Qualtrics surveyed 311 people in India (aged 18-65) in September 2020

About Qualtrics
Qualtrics, the leader in customer experience and creator of the Experience Management (XM) category, is changing the way organizations manage and improve the four core experiences of business––customer, employee, product, and brand. Over 11,000 organizations around the world are using Qualtrics to listen, understand, and take action on experience data (X-data™)––the beliefs, emotions, and intentions that tell you why things are happening, and what to do about it. The Qualtrics XM Platform™ is a system of action that helps businesses attract customers who stay longer and buy more, engage employees who build a positive culture, develop breakthrough products people love, and build a brand people are passionate about. To learn more, please visit qualtrics.com.