Overall, the consensus is that older generations, Baby Boomers, continue to be weary of COVID-19 while younger generations have started to return to regular shopping habits
In 2022, shopping habits are slowly shifting back to normal but the need for COVID related items remains
Cameroon detected its first case of COVID-19 in March of 2020, a few months after the initial alert of the spread of the virus in China and many other countries. When countries had growing cases of the virus, the Cameroonian government-imposed lockdowns and restrictions of its own to ease the spread. The country was not immune to the impact of the virus as Cameroonians way of life was transformed. Specifically with shopping habits, many individuals began to buy protective gear (facial masks, gloves) and disinfectants as preventative measures.
Additionally, individuals were forced to take different measures in obtaining their essential items such as groceries by going to the stores during less crowded/busy times to potentially avoid contracting the virus. As the vaccine rollout continues to progress in the country, the fear of contracting the virus has subsided and therefore over the years of 2021 and 2022, there has been a noticeable shift in many individuals shopping habits.
Our Kasi Insight Retail in Cameroon – COVID-19 tracker seeks to understand the developing trends in shopping habits during the pandemic. The tracker demonstrates the items/products more commonly purchased over the months and years and shows the impact of the pandemic on purchase decisions of the respondents. Additionally, the tracker identifies the ways in which respondents adjusted their regular grocery shopping habits to prevent the spread of the virus.
Consumer demand for bath soaps and hand sanitizers continues to grow driven by the older consumers
COVID19 and other general supplies demand grew at 5-6% from 2021 to 2022. In 2021, the average demand of COVID supplies was at 13% and increased by 6% making the average 19% in 2022. While general supplies had an average demand of 13% in 2021 and a 5% increase, there was an average demand of 18% in 2022. Bath soaps and hand sanitizers led the demand growth for supplies. In fact, the demand for these products grew by 8% from 2021 to 2022; this was particularly attributed to the growth in demand by Baby Boomers.
Baby Boomer respondents were the main consumers of bath soaps, with a growth in demand of 17% between 2021 and 2022 while for Gen Z this growth was by a mere 3%.
The older consumers also drove the demand for COVID19 related items, with Baby Boomers seeing a 24% growth in demand for hand sanitizers between 2021 and 2022. The younger generations in particular Gen Z, saw a significant lower growth in demand by only 7% in comparison.
Baby Boomers were considered the most vulnerable population during this pandemic, therefore requiring them to be more cautious with their habits/routines.
COVID induced shopping habits are maintained by older consumers while younger consumers are returning to pre COVID habits
Consumer shopping habits changed during the pandemic, and in 2021, one year after the initial outbreak of COVID-19, respondents continued to avoid crowds when conducting their errands. 13% of consumers in 2021 preferred to go to the stores at the less busy times. This was true for Gen Z in particular, of whom 17% of respondents stated that this was one of the measures they took during the pandemic to avoid contracting the virus.
However, in 2022 this changed for consumers, with 17% of respondents stating that they have now returned to normal/regular shopping habits. Some 15% of the respondents continue to reduce shopping trips by purchasing goods in bulk. For 35% of Baby Boomer respondents, shopping in bulk continues to be the preferred method of purchasing groceries in 2022.
Overall, the consensus is that older generations, Baby Boomers, continue to be weary of COVID-19 while younger generations have started to return to regular shopping habits.
This is an opportunity for brands/businesses to cater to the older generations, by providing them with accessible shopping outlets; Baby Boomers continue to need COVID supplies but also look to purchase their regular grocery items (including general supplies such as body soaps) in bulk.
Therefore, brands/business producing soaps/disinfectants could look into having deals on bulk purchases to ease the strain on this generation.
Our data intelligence platform can help homecare brands understand the ongoing trends in shopping habits in Cameroon and in 20 other countries in Africa.
Contact us to see how we can help your business today!