Nielsen: Key Consumer Behavior Thresholds as the Coronavirus Outbreak Evolves

Nielsen has identified key consumer behaviors in light of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. As the virus began to spread globally, Nielsen recorded record sales in personal health and safety items including hand sanitizer and medical masks, but also identified a rise in broader consumer behaviors and purchases.

Nielsen identified six consumer behavior thresholds of the COVID-19 concern, driven by news cycles:

  1. Proactive health-minded buying — a rising interest in products that help one maintain personal health
  2. Reactive health management — an uptick in purchase of products necessary for virus containment, such as hand sanitizers and gloves
  3. Pantry preparation — increase in purchase of shelf-stable foods, a spike in store visits, more items bought at one time
  4. Quarantined living preparation — increase in online shopping, decrease in store visits
  5. Restricted living — restricted shopping both in-person and online, prices rising as limited availability impacts them in some cases
  6. Living a new normal — people return to normal lives but have new health-cautious routines. Permanent shifts in supply chain, e-commerce and hygiene practices.

Nielsen found purchase behaviors were based on the news cycle.

Read Nielsen’s full report here.