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Covid-19 poll daily insights

April 28, 2020


With many brands reporting supply chain issues and distribution channels closing down, some plan to move their business fully away from wholesale and third-party retail. Instead, respondents say they’ll focus solely on selling online or directly in their own brick-and-mortar stores.

One brand said, “I think there will be a huge shift in online direct-to-consumer sales. Lots of our wholesalers and distributors are closing down permanently.”

Another brand said “[After all of this, we plan to] cut out distributors, focus on dealing with a more specialised client base that aligns with our principles, and rid our business of misleading distributors. [We’ll] deal entirely directly with our clients.”

Of brands that say their sales are increasing, 31 percent attribute it to promotions and sales they’re running. This supports what we’re seeing from a dataset of 18,000 Klaviyo customers. Check out our findings and learn about other marketing strategies brands are using to increase sales right now.

why are your sales being affected, brands with increasing sales 4-28

With many brands unable to stock or ship products, consumers have been turning to new brands they may not have tried before. In turn, the new brands are trying to figure out how to retain these new customers and encourage repeat purchases. When asked, “Regarding where your consumers shop with your brand, how do you think this will change once stay-at-home orders have eased and the pandemic has passed?” here are some common responses:

  • “All of our ecommerce is from NEW customers outside our immediate geographic region. Hopefully our local customers will come back to brick-and-mortar, but they are also now used to seeing us with more of an online presence.”
  • “Hopefully we can show new customers that we are a great option to stay with.”
  • “I’m a relatively new brand, so this time has helped me reach new customers. I’m optimistic I will keep these new customers.”
  • “I think sales will overall be in a better spot after the pandemic has passed. We are getting so many first time orders which we can remarket and upsell.”

These sentiments reinforce what we’re seeing within Klaviyo’s customer dataset. The graph below shows a dramatic increase in new customer spending starting around March 15, 2020 (the beginning of coronavirus stay-at-home advisories), while repeat customer spending remains relatively steady.

revenue by new and returning purchasers 4-28

Effective Marketing Moments

What’s working?

Stay-at-home messaging. Blue Mercury, a makeup and skincare company, has changed its messaging to reflect the current environment. At a time when many consumers are spending on beauty and cosmetic products, marketing messaging that highlights using these items at home is very relevant.

Blue Mercury email

Emphasizing mental health. Bellabeat, an online brand specializing in wellness, is known for its watches and jewelry that help women measure their wellness goals. They’ve arranged a virtual chat for their community, so they can share tips and recommendations on how to stay active, mentally fit, and happy. Check out our guide to communicating with empathy during this time.

Bellabeat email


Brands with increasing sales

How are they feeling?

Brands with increasing sales say they plan to change how and where they market their products once stay-at-home orders are lifted.

One brand said they plan to “create more partnerships.”

Another brand said they plan to “reach out to brick-and-mortar businesses about purchasing [their] greeting cards for [the] shops.”

Brands with decreasing sales

How are they feeling?

Forty-eight percent of brands with decreasing sales say their sales are being affected by macroeconomic factors, rather than the changes in the products consumers are buying.

why are your sales affected, brands with decreasing sales 4-28

Brands with flat sales

How are they feeling?

What will brands with flat sales do once stay-at-home restrictions are lifted? Many are torn between two realities—they either plan on maintaining the status quo or don’t know what to do.

If you’re in a similar situation, one idea is to start using SMS. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that many brands are using SMS to connect with customers during this time and plan to afterward as well. Check out our guide to getting started with SMS.

More resources for businesses affected by Covid-19