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    on August 20, 2020 Digital Marketing

    From the Consumer: Navigating retail and dining options in a pandemic (with video)

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    In a recent survey, we asked consumers how they were dining and shopping in the midst of the coronavirus outbreak. Nearly 1,800 people responded.

    While data about a group of people offers valuable insight, so does highlighting individual voices. That's why we're excited to share how one young woman describes the changes in her buying behavior, as part of a new series, "From the Consumer":

    "Howdy. My name is Ecaroh Jackson. I am 23 years old. And I currently live in College Station, Texas."

    Dining Options

    "Although I love eating out, I have refrained from dining in recently. I've started going through the drive-throughs and ordering to-go orders. This way I can still eat at the places I love while staying safe."

    And she's not alone. In our survey, most consumers said they preferred to make their own food right now. Takeout ranked second, and delivery closely followed, coming in third. Respondents then indicated their fourth choice was to dine at a restaurant in an outdoor section. And dining inside a restaurant came in last.

    In-Store Shopping

    "As the stores begin to reopen, I've started shopping a little bit more frequently. Although I prefer to shop online and pick up in-store or even have it shipped to my house, I do like to shop in-store sometimes as well. Lately, they haven't been too packed so as long as I'm wearing my mask and socially distancing, I feel pretty okay to go in and shop. But I do realize that the best thing to do right now is stay at home and, therefore, I try to limit those shopping experiences so that I don't put myself or anyone else in danger unnecessarily."

    And this was also reflected in the data. Survey respondents said they were mostly shopping online, while a considerable amount indicated they were also doing half of their shopping in store.

    Online Shopping

    "I am shopping online all of the time now. Before the pandemic started, I probably shopped online once or twice a month and that was for a specific item or for a specific sale. But now I probably get online once or twice a day. It's really easy to get lost online shopping, especially now, and get tempted by a really good deal."

    And this sentiment was echoed with what consumers are looking for this holiday shopping season. Respondents ranked discounts first, with more than half of respondents indicating that is what they were most interested in from brands. Safety/Cleanliness came in second. Convenience came in a close third. And philanthropy ranked fourth.

    While Ecaroh is just one consumer, her purchasing habits and reasoning behind them are representative of countless more.

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    Andrea Gonzales-Paul

    Andrea Gonzales-Paul is a brand journalist at Quikly. Her background is in storytelling, specifically working in TV news and documentary filmmaking.