If you’ve reached here, you by now already know of the pandemic that Coronavirus (coVID-19) is. With the number of active cases at 2,04,498 at the time of writing, and 8258 deaths, businesses across the world have come to a standstill. With some of the most populous countries in lockdown and businesses forced to work from home or close operations, small businesses are taking a way bigger hit than anticipated or reported.
Global stock markets have crashed, businesses shut down, cases escalating by higher than 14,000 per day.
Seems like the coVID-19 has become the biggest disrupter of business trends with some industries flourishing and witnessing the highest boom recorded; while there are others seeing a slump.
This simply implies that irrespective of what business you are involved in, you are more than likely to get affected: the global economy taking an estimated hit of $2.7 trillion.
And tbh, businesses are likely to struggle for a while- even if the number of new cases per day reduces. Majorly because businesses are going to need time to make up for their losses.
For instance, at the peak of the outbreak, China saw it’s unemployment rate at 6.2% and retail sales falling by 20%.
Italy, in turn, is expecting it’s GDP to fall at an annualised rate of 7.5% in the first quarter of the year- mostly becoming an existential threat to the Euro.
According to the Nielsen’s Report, in the 4th, 5th and 6th stages of the Coronavirus outbreak, the online industry is set to boom. In the 5th stage, more and more businesses will be entering the online sphere because of extremely limited movement. It is in the 6th stage, essentially the recovery stage that normal lives will resume but with a higher sense of renewed consciousness to health and hygiene.
Amidst all this, here’s a roundup of the disruptions so far, what’s working for the on-demand industry and what’s not.
The grocery delivery industry has probably seen the maximum surge globally against all else. Grocery delivery apps like Instacart and Walmart Grocery typically see about 20,000 downloads a day. This was the same until February until this Sunday where Instacart saw a surge of 218% with over 38,500 daily downloads and Walmart Grocery witnessed 54,000+ daily downloads. The demand for online grocery delivery right now is more than ever and this seems an adept time to take your grocery store online.
The food delivery market is the one to take the biggest brunt. The number of daily app downloads have seen a massive downward curve. The number of downloads of food delivery apps saw a fall globally in mid february. While it picked up slightly during the beginning of March, it has cooled off yet again. Globally, people are considering cooking at home a relatively safer option than ordering out. Despite food ordering apps like Swiggy, Uber Eats etc. offering ‘contactless deliveries’ to ensure safety and stay afloat with businesses.
For instance, McDonald’s published on it’s website that they’ll be following Meituan Dianping’s ‘contactless deliveries’ amid the outbreak where customers order remotely – on mobile phones or by computers in store – and employees seal the meals in bags and put them in a special spot for pickup without human contact.
The idea is new, sort of practical but the industry is still struggling for more powerful combat. But this sounds like the right time to take your restaurant business online; making sure your customers know exactly all the healthy practices you’re adopting.
Amidst nationwide lockdowns in China and Italy; and statewise lockdowns in other countries – the online entertainment industry is set for a guaranteed boon. According to QuestMobile, the short video sector saw a record 569 million daily active users. With the virus forcing the live venues and cinemas to shut, chinese video streaming sites are having musicians perform virtually; alongwith movies premiering online.
HOME CARE SERVICES
Scientists globally have reiterated that the elderly and others with a lower immunity in general are more vulnerable to catching the virus. With almost double the people quarantined than diagnosed; additionally the lockdown, the elderly and dependents are left with no one to take care of them. At a time like this, home care service providers are much needed. Ambulance booking apps are in a bid to do fairly well along with Home Care Services apps.
According to studies and reports from Quick Sprout, the Travel industry is the worst hit! The impact of the Covid-19 Corona Virus on world tourism is unquestionable- there was a 48% drop in the online traffic for travel websites. Being a linchpin of the global economy, CNN quotes- “It’s one of the largest industries in the world, with $5.7 trillion in revenue. It is responsible for an estimated 319 million jobs, or roughly one in 10 people working on the planet. And no sector is more at risk from the novel coronavirus.”
With 180 million chinese passports and 100 million US passports held, business travel is completely restricted. Conferences that bring 100,000 people each are being cancelled, borders being locked and the fact that the largest global travel show in itself stands cancelled is in fact telling.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) estimates that global air transport revenues will be reduced by 5% this year, which means 29.3 billion dollars less (about 27,000 million Euros), while OPEC has lowered global demand of oil to 19%, 100.73 million barrels per day
REMOTE WORK APPS
Amid lockdown, tech companies both in India and major global stations have introduced a work-from-home structure. With companies like Microsoft, Google, and Zoom trying to keep up with demand for their now free work-from-home software, clearly remote facilities apps are set for a boom. Schools, colleges and companies around the world are aiming towards more drastic measures to contain the spread of the virus. Cancellations, quarantines and work from home policies are greatly impacting the need for chat and video conferencing software to try and maintain some semblance in an otherwise fidgety business sphere.
Microsoft’s software saw a 500% increase in meetings calls and conferences. Google too has offered their premium video conferencing software free to use through July 2020. Zoom usage is also up more than 20% in the last month.
How to keep your business covered and what’s the tech-antidote?
At Code Brew, we will next be focussing on solutions to stay afloat during these times. In our next pieces, we will be talking more about how you can keep your business afloat during the pandemic and what is the tech antidote for the same.
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