High Street mass closures – could online shopping actually be its salvation?


COVID-19 has propelled a whole new generation of digital adopters online. Research shows that one in ten customers started using a digital service/app for the first time since lockdown, and 70% plan to keep using the new channels permanently.

But brands will have to work hard and offer competitive online experiences in order to keep them. Businesses that are new to online trading must continue to recognise customers as individuals and tailor the online experiences they deliver accordingly. This means leveraging data to understand what customers want from their shopping experience. By doing this, they can compete with and beat the established ecommerce juggernauts.

Could these technologies now also save the high street? New technologies that can segment customers and truly understand their needs can make for a smoother experience both online and in-store. Investing in customer relationships now will be hugely beneficial once the pandemic is over; 61% of consumers say they would pay more to buy from businesses that delivered a good experience during COVID. Businesses should thus start levelling up their people, process, and technology principles to be able to meet customer expectations wherever they are shopping.