In India, as elsewhere, COVID-19 has accelerated a shift to e-commerce, a development which is making online adaptability and agility a core survival skill across categories; Madhurya Alankaar has some tips.

“The ecosystem of purchasing now requires sudden reimagining,” says the group head for Brand Planning and Creative Strategy at Geometry Encompass Network in Mumbai in an exclusive article for WARC.

“Everyone is now shapeshifting and re-evaluating their approach towards e-commerce as the channel is exhibiting evolution with compelling and welcomed practices.”

He includes among these the creation of a more level playing field in retail as small outlets have partnered with larger delivery platforms like Zomato and Swiggy; the birth of unlikely collaborations such as that between ITC Foods and Domino’s Pizza to enable zero contact delivery; and the consumer re-evaluation of grocery delivery in the light of lockdown.

Some of this has been “a need of the hour thing because of the ‘essentials’ fight,” he acknowledges. “But these exercises will quickly transpire overall shopping behaviours.”

People won’t be rushing back to brick and mortar stores, malls and other retail spaces – a fear factor will linger, so that across all categories there will be a premium on online adaptability and agility.

“When people won’t step out, brands will have to be more salient and sentient, they must be seen and be seen to be listening,” he says.

Alankaar notes that there is no playbook for this scenario, but instead he offers a ‘PPE Kit’ – standing for Preparation, Personalisation and Engagement – that can guide marketers in preparing their brands for this new environment.

For more details of the PPE kit, read Madhurya Alankaar’s article in full here: Prepare, personify, experience: A brand ‘PPE kit’ for navigating India’s democratised e-commerce landscape.

Sourced from WARC