The Impact of COVID-19 on Consumers: Preparing for Digital Sales

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COVID-19 has affected everyone's daily lives. At least 316 million people in 42 states have been asked to stay at home to slow down the pandemic. In this aspect, businesses have been susceptible to make substantial transformations. Workplace operations of many businesses went virtual. The effect of the digital transformation on productivity and corporate culture has been studied extensively. Meanwhile, how COVID-19 has influenced consumers and the consumption culture has received relatively limited attention. Managers often take a wait-and-see approach on the impact of COVID-19 on sales. It is often uncertain whether and how many customers will return after the pandemic passes. Consumers live through the pandemic, and some changes might be long-lasting even after the situation eases. We examine the pandemic as an accelerator of the structural change in consumption and the digital transformation in the marketplace. Managers might adapt to the digital transformation in the market to recover or even grow further the sales after COVID-19.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9076858
Pages (from-to)212-218
Number of pages7
JournalIEEE Engineering Management Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2020


  • COVID-19
  • Consumer culture
  • E-commerce
  • digital marketing
  • digital sales
  • online shopping
  • pandemic


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