As companies across the globe adapt—and even reinvent themselves—during the coronavirus crisis, many are looking beyond the lockdown as countries and economies begin to reopen. Fortunately, there’s no shortage of strategic guidance to help companies manage through these unprecedented times, including knowing the business implications of COVID-19, tips for leadership in a crisis, and how to avoid work-from-home (WFH) burnout.

Below we look at COVID-19’s impact on the customer experience—both during the crisis and how things are likely to permanently change moving forward. To help, a recent McKinsey article sheds some interesting light on shifting consumer behaviors following the crisis. According to the article, “Spending across most industries is down, purchases have shifted from in-person to digital channels, and public safety has become a top priority for companies and consumers alike.”

In this new and ever-changing environment, the challenge for companies is identifying and understanding new customer behaviors, including those that may only be temporary and those that may be more permanent over the long term. To help better understand changing consumer behaviors during this time and adapt your business accordingly, the McKinsey article recommends executives focus on these three priorities:

  1. Prepare for a digital recovery. The coronavirus crisis has only heightened the already high customer demand for digital channels. According to the McKinsey article, “Companies that accelerate their digital offerings can see increased engagement now—digitization forces simplification, which customers love—and be prepared for lower-cost operations in the years ahead.”
  2. Accept a safe and contactless customer journey as your default. Moving forward, safe approaches to offering products and services will be required, according to the McKinsey article. While some companies may require a broader redesign of the customer experience, most can begin to make this shift by first examining in-person interactions that may need to be updated or changed. By understanding the operational challenges and potential risks to safety, companies can develop a roadmap to implement solutions. 
  3. Anticipate, don’t just ask for customer feedback. According to the McKinsey article, the increase in digital channel usage is also driving an increase in “dynamic” data that companies can use to improve personalization and the overall customer experience. This includes leveraging predictive analytics to help companies be more proactive in meeting customer needs and more targeted with product offers and promotions.

If you’d like to learn more, including a view into McKinsey’s framework for classifying consumer behaviors in the next normal, see the complete McKinsey article.

For the latest data and trends related to Coronavirus, check out TIBCO’s COVID-19 Visual Analysis Hub, which features visual data science analyses to help manage the effects of the virus today and in the future.