With many not comfortable getting vaccinated, brands shouldn’t expect a rush back to stores

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Many brands and retailers are counting the days until COVID vaccines have been administered to everyone and retail habits get back to normal. But new research from First Insight suggests this view might be overly optimistic, if not altogether unrealistic. Nearly a third of American consumers are unsure about receiving or will not receive the COVID-19 vaccine when they become eligible, and even those who plan to get vaccinated will not be rushing back in-store, the research finds.

Forty percent of consumers say they will shop for apparel in-store either less or the same amount after being vaccinated, a theme that is reflected across in-store visits for footwear (44 percent), accessories (43 percent), beauty products (45 percent), luxury items (41 percent) and electronics (43 percent). Further, the majority of consumers (61 percent) said they would cut back on spending if a national lockdown were enforced.

“Clearly, the vaccine is not the silver bullet that is going to bring retail back from the brink,” said Greg Petro, CEO of First Insight, in a news release. “Our latest research shows that even with a vaccine, people will still be afraid to go in-store, and fully prepared to cut back on spending if the nation returns to another lockdown. It’s time for retailers to create better connections with consumers by targeting them with the right marketing messages, and bringing them the right product assortment, pricing and experiences that will entice them to spend both in-store as well as online. First Insight has empowered some of the world’s largest brands with Voice of Customer insights to help them understand their consumers better and build relationships and experiences that can reinforce safety, strengthen loyalty and increase sales in this difficult environment.”

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retail  consumer preferences  future of retail  consumer behavior  in-store shopping  Coronavirus  COVID-19  Consumer Purchase Behavior  Safety