The world is going through an unprecedented time, and just a couple of months back, it was even unimaginable that a virus would transform our daily-life routine so enormously. According to several pieces of research, the coronavirus has pushed more consumers to shift their shopping habits online and, consumers are more frequently relying on eCommerce rather than buying in-store. Ecommerce was already growing at a steady pace but the lockdown gave it a whole new dimension with a population around the globe confined to their homes. While the lockdown orders have started to ease-off in various parts of the world, the consumers have developed new online behaviors and habits. A recent report by Morning Consult revealed that 24% of consumers would not feel comfortable going back to a shopping mall for at least six months. According to an online tracker produced by Emarsys and GoodData, it is apparent that eCommerce and retail online revenues are on the rise since March 2020. US retailers’ online year-over-year (YoY) revenue growth is up 83% as of June 7, 2020.

  • Canadian retailers’ online year-over-year (YoY) revenue growth is up 118% as of June 7, 2020.
  • Similarly, there’s been 107% & 25% year-over-year (YoY) revenue growth in US and Canadian eCommerce business.

The eCommerce business in the US garnered a whopping $602 billion in 2019. According to the forecast released by eMarketer, US eCommerce sales are expected to increase by 18% due to the impact of COVID-19. The sales figure is expected to touch $710 billion, an increase of $108 billion from the previous year, accumulating 14.5% of total U.S. retail sales.

The stats compiled by Adobe exhibit that shopping levels during COVID-19 (April to May) were higher than what retailers saw during the 2019 holiday season (November to December). The consumers spent over $153 billion online in the last two months which is 7% higher than the $142.5 billion spent online during November and December 2019.

Impact of Covid-19 on eCommerce Industry

Around mid-March, when the Trump administration declared coronavirus to be a national emergency and issued guidelines for the social gathering of more than 10 people, order counts began to surge, on several eCommerce platforms. According to a study revealed by Bazaar voice, online shoppers were interested in the following categories:

  • Food, Beverages and, Tobacco category saw an 85% increase in order count.
  • Toys and Games witnessed a 60% increase in order count.
  • Sporting Goods observed an 86% increase in order count.

Looking at the trend, the data reflects that the top categories for page views growth towards the end of March were Business and Industrial, Toys and Games, Food, Beverages and, Tobacco. However, by April end, we witnessed a shift in this trend and, the top categories emerged to be Toys and Games, Arts and Entertainment and, Sporting Goods. In May, some markets began to reopen, and this led to a shift in consumer buying behavior again. While the order count graph seems to be declining but still, May 2020 observed a YOY growth rate of 83% compared to May 2019.

The eCommerce analysis firm Stackline compiled a list of the Top 100 Gaining and Top 100 Declining categories in March. As per the list, here are Top 5 fastest growing and fastest declining categories

Irrespective of list and category, we have tangible stats that the pandemic has impacted retailers in both positive and negative ways. The question remains: will this drastic change in consumer behavior stabilize once we flatten the curve, or is this our new normal? If you have any questions in regards to the latest eCommerce trends, please feel free to contact our team at