The COVID-19 pandemic has left its mark on the whole economy. The pandemic has changed the way stores operate, but it has also had an impact on customer expectations. In 2021 you can do almost everything via the Internet, so you don’t have to worry that much about closed stores or a product being out of stock.

Customers’ expectations have shifted, as have their priorities, decision-making process, and buying behavior. As a result, what was once considered a great strategy is no longer a viable way to go. Many companies have decided to implement software to help them adjust to these changes. For instance, software programs such as rapidly grew in popularity. And this greater reliance on technology is not the only significant change we see in today’s business environment.

The Shift From Physical to Digital

Many consumers have adapted to the digital experience and now prefer buying products online. In fact, it is essentially their expectation that any product or service they want can either be purchased or at least ordered online. It is good news for e-commerce companies, but it’s a mixed blessing for other businesses that have to change their strategies to meet their target customer’s expectations.

Today’s businesses need to consider partnering with shipping and delivery service providers. It’s no longer enough to design and develop a physical product. You need to consider as well how that product will be delivered to the customer. Try finding a cheap courier, but pay attention to delivery time as well –  today’s consumer expects it to be relatively quick.

Focus on Customer Experience

The modern consumer is not looking for a product anymore, but for an experience. Today, making the purchase is the experience. It often includes allowing the customer to be a part of the design process.

Making a product more a reflection on customer experience than a stand-alone item has to do, in part, with product integration. Every product, app, or device should be designed to be used in conjunction with another product. This way, the customer experience is enhanced because customers’ new purchase suddenly adds value to prior purchases they’ve made.

For example, if a consumer buys a product for their home (e.g., a carbon monoxide detector), they expect to have the ability to integrate it with their smartphone. Thanks to this function, their purchase will have an additional value.

Open Access Frenzy

Today, people expect businesses to be accessible 24/7, globally, and from any device they choose, including mobile phones, tablets, laptops, or desktop computers. All these options require a change in marketing strategy and the support companies provide.

It’s no secret that businesses that fail to adjust their strategies and make themselves available to users from a multitude of platforms will lose customers. Consequently, they will lose money in both the short and long run.

Open access also means a broader choice in shipping and delivery. As we already mentioned, many consumers these days expect their purchases to be delivered to their door. However, this trend is not limited to products. Many services that were once carried out in a public space are now being offered in clients’ homes. These include hairstyling, massage therapy, pet grooming, etc.

Transforming Brand Loyalty Into Brand Identification

Branding has evolved in such a way that what matters most in the minds of today’s consumers is not simply recognizing the brand but rather identifying with the brand. The brand customers purchase products from has become an integral part of their identities. This trend is directly related to the customer experience. The consumer buys a particular product, not for what the product can do, but for whom the product allows them to become.

Identifying with a brand has a lot to do with the mission and values that the brand represents. This is why we are seeing more and more brands speaking out about political and social causes. It also explains why more and more brands are taking steps to become more environmentally friendly. Also, most often than not, large companies are far from shy about their efforts, often incorporating them into their advertising, if not making them the focal point.


As the global economy is opening back up, it creates a new environment with growing expectations and needs that need to be satisfied. Every company, whether large or small, stands today before a unique challenge.

For a business to appeal to a new breed of consumers, it must embrace its clients’ online shopping habits. It must also focus on providing an experience rather than simply a product.

Besides, in today’s environment, it is not enough for a company or a brand to list the benefits of their product or service. Instead, it needs to display its values to the consumer, who will express their values through their patronage.

How will all the old and up-and-coming businesses deal with this process of adjusting to the new customer expectations? Only time can answer this question.