According to a recent McKinsey article, a great consumer shift is underway, and the changes are here to stay. Here are the five key trends driving the shift in consumer behavior and their implications for brands selling online.

1. Flight to online

According to McKinsey, consumers are rapidly flocking to online destinations. Consumers are shopping a lot differently than they did six months ago. Specifically highlighted are categories like essentials and home entertainment, with some categories seeing greater than 35% growth. These behavioral changes are likely to stick long term as consumers experience added convenience and time-savings.

This significant change in shopping behavior poses both a challenge and an opportunity for brands. On the one hand, brands have fewer opportunities for brand recognition on store shelves as consumers reduce the time they’re spending in physical stores. On the other hand, as consumers increase their digital time, brands have more opportunities to get in front of those shoppers online. Amazon, Walmart, Kroger and many other retailers all have on-site banner ads that brands can use to showcase their products and promote their latest deals. The medium is changing, but the opportunity is bigger than ever before.

2. Shock to loyalty
The second major trend McKinsey notes is the shock to loyalty. Consumers are trying to brands and products at an unprecedented rate. Some 36 percent of consumers are trying new product brands, while 25 percent are incorporating new private label brands. And of consumers who have tried new brands, 73 percent plan to continue to incorporate new brands into their routines.

That means it’s more important then ever to keep your brand front-and-center with shoppers. One of the best ways to do this is to be visible when shoppers are at the point of purchase. These days, that means on sites like Amazon, Walmart, Target, Kroger and others. Shoppers are looking online for information about products they want to buy, and they’re making more purchases online than ever before. McKinsey indicates that availability, convenience and value are the top three factors consumers are considering when making decisions about new brands. So the right banner can highlight your product’s benefits to consumers at just the right time.

3. Need for hygiene transparency
McKinsey highlights that following hygiene protocols is critical–but so too is communicating effectively that they are being followed. Consumers are expected to continue to increase their usage of delivery and self-checkout services. Online banners can help brands communicate their hygiene efforts and protocols.

4. Back to basics and value
Some 40% of US consumers have reduced their general spending, putting an ever increasing focus on essentials categories. Concern about the economy means that consumers are looking for value, and there’s no better way to highlight great deals than by showcasing them on the e-commerce sites where shoppers are making purchases.

5. Rise of the homebody economy
Consumers are spending more time at home. McKinsey highlights categories like cooking, home improvement, online entertainment and working out as some that are seeing the most intent to increase time spent. That likely will lead to additional purchases to support those activities. With so much competition for share of consumer wallets, and so much reduced time spent at live sporting activities, commutes and other activities, brands need to continue to invest in online media that will enable them to stay front-and-center with consumers.

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