Opinion: Coronavirus – what retailers do now will define them in the future

Natalie Berg

As 21st-century consumers, we’ve gotten used to having the world at our fingertips. Then seemingly overnight, all the stuff we take for granted is in question – access to healthcare; groceries on shelves; the ability to travel, go to school, socialise with friends.

These are unprecedented times. In the coming weeks, as self-isolation becomes more prevalent in a bid to slow the spread of the disease, what might this mean for retail?

As we’ve seen with previous recessions or in fact any period of prolonged uncertainty, consumer behaviour changes instantaneously. We drop right down to the bottom of Maslow’s pyramid, covering our physiological and safety needs.

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