2020 held no punches. As Covid-19 swept the globe in March, many companies entered struggle or flight mode because the pandemic wrought sudden, sweeping change in the marketplace atmosphere:
- Important companies like mass retailers and manufacturing amenities had new security and sanitation pointers to think about, whereas non-essential companies, together with bars and sit-down eating places, had been pressured to both adapt or shut down, many for good.
- Unemployment soared and shopper spending sank, roiling markets and inflicting major global economies to slip into recession.
- Although development exercise was capable of proceed uninterrupted for probably the most half, funding dried up, inflicting many commercial building projects to stall at the same time as residential constructing development spending spiked.
Issues returned to some semblance of regular within the months since Could as economies step by step reopened. Whereas a vaccine could also be on the horizon, nonetheless, as soon as once more, Covid-19 cases are surging, retail gross sales progress is stagnating, and the chance of extra lockdowns grows.
Via all of it, the analysts at MarketResearch.com proceed to carefully track the pandemic’s economic impact, serving to companies in a broad vary of market sectors sift by means of the noise to establish and put together for near-term challenges and alternatives arising from the pandemic, in addition to long-term tendencies that the pandemic is accelerating.
Our analysis this yr uncovered a lot of areas serving to companies keep afloat amid the pandemic, some anticipated — just like the continued shift from brick-and-mortar retail to e-commerce — and others much less apparent, just like the increase in house renovations. Under, our analysts share their findings on which markets caught a break in 2020 and what their prospects are submit pandemic.
1. PPE Demand Explodes Amid Pandemic Management Efforts
Unsurprisingly, the pandemic has sustained surging levels of demand for personal protective equipment (PPE), together with face masks and shields and disposable medical gloves, which noticed explosive progress in 2020 in line with a collection of Freedonia Group analyses.
Masks mandates, well being advisories, and private efforts to curb the virus’s unfold drove heavy use of PPE outdoors of the healthcare and medical markets the place they’re mostly used traditionally. For example, the pandemic led to unprecedented masks use in eating places, workplaces, manufacturing amenities, colleges, banks, retailers — finish customers that had by no means bought this stuff in such volumes earlier than.
“Even with widespread use of reusable masks, demand for disposable masks is anticipated to achieve ranges greater than 5 instances bigger than these seen in different world pandemics similar to SARS or H1N1,” says Teresa Hayes of MarketResearch.com’s The Freedonia Group.
Whereas demand for these things is anticipated to plummet as soon as a vaccine is getting used and instances drop to low ranges, the market will nonetheless probably stay above ranges seen earlier than 2020 for some time because the behavioral and psychological results of Covid-19 linger.
Abrupt Shift to Distant World Accelerates Developments in Digital Markets
When economies shut down in March, shoppers went on-line to do what they may now not in particular person, accelerating tendencies towards e-commerce and distant studying and work that may have lasting results.
2. E-Studying Takes Heart Stage as Colleges & Universities Shut
The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the shift to digital studying in each Okay-12 colleges and faculties and universities as establishments closed up and despatched college students house, says Kathy Mickey of MarketResearch.com’s Simba Info. This has pushed elevated enrollment in on-line establishments, in addition to demand for Chromebooks, digital variations of textbooks, and different digital packages (particularly ones suitable with Google Meet and Zoom) that facilitate distant studying.
“We count on elevated integration of digital packages/instruments in lecture rooms as soon as faculty returns to in-person mode as a result of lecturers can have turn out to be extra educated about and cozy with them,” Mickey says. “However we see no explicit urge for food for college kids (Okay-12, specifically) to be sitting in entrance of computer systems all day.”
3. Covid-19 E-Commerce Gross sales Spike Advantages Pouches & Different E-Commerce Packaging
Whereas shoppers have been gravitating to e-commerce from conventional brick-and-mortar retail for years, the pandemic has sped up that transition even additional:
- Authorities shutdowns of nonessential retailers in March eradicated brick-and-mortar as an possibility for shoppers to purchase many merchandise.
- Many shoppers involved in regards to the coronavirus started lowering in-person journeys to grocery shops and different retailers deemed important and allowed to function all through the pandemic.
In consequence, on-line retailers like Amazon and Instacart reported huge gross sales will increase, and important retailers additionally noticed a pointy rise in on-line gross sales and use of providers like curbside pickup. Getting into the vacation season, on-line gross sales nonetheless proceed to surge even after most retailers have reopened.
Although associated alternatives are quite a few, versatile packaging is one space the place progress by means of 2024 will partially be propelled by e-commerce tendencies that the pandemic is accelerating. Extra amenable to delivery than different forms of packaging on account of their mild weight and power, as an illustration, pouches are anticipated to particularly profit from elevated reliance on e-commerce for meals, drinks, prescription drugs, and shopper items.
4. On-line Meals Supply Reaches Broad New Viewers Following Restaurant Closures
One of many industries hardest hit by the financial shutdowns of March and the social distancing necessities of the May reopenings, the restaurant business is making an attempt to offset revenues misplaced from dine-in capability restrictions and shopper unease about consuming out throughout a pandemic by getting on-line.
On-line meals supply platforms like DoorDash, GrubHub, and UberEats have been round for some time, however staunch shopper preferences for consuming out, notably within the main US market, had been a key restrainer of progress. Covid-19 has modified all that, driving fast enlargement within the person base for these platforms in addition to the variety of eating places hosted by them that’s anticipated to outlast the pandemic.
Sudden Shopper Markets Surge On account of Shutdowns
Caught at house in quarantine, shopper buying habits took a flip towards indulgence, consolation, and novelty throughout the pandemic.
5. Frozen Meals Packaging Suppliers Get Increase as Shoppers Splurge & Inventory Freezers
Panic shopping for and elevated indulgence purchases have pushed remarkable growth for frozen meals and ice cream manufacturers throughout the pandemic in comparison with historic ranges, boosting demand for the several types of packaging used for these merchandise.
Freedonia analyst Carolyn Zulandt says, “Not like a lot of different industries, frozen meals — and the packaging for these meals — are seeing a lift in gross sales throughout the pandemic, primarily on account of shifts in shopper shopping for habits. Shoppers are getting ready extra meals at house and stockpiling meals gadgets with longer shelf lives, all of which advantages gross sales within the freezer aisle.”
Among the many packaging merchandise anticipated to profit from will increase in frozen meals gross sales are the cups generally used for the normal ice-cream pint, in addition to the ready-to-heat trays and (more and more) bowls used for single-serve frozen meals.
6. With Shift to Distant Work & Studying, Pet Possession Skyrockets
Covid-19 led to a increase yr for the pet business by triggering a surge in pet adoption, as extensively reported within the press and confirmed by Packaged Facts pet proprietor surveys. A major factor of this surge has consisted of pet lovers including to their menageries, says David Sprinkle of MarketResearch.com’s Packaged Details, such that new pet acquisition has prolonged past canines and cats to different forms of pets, particularly reptiles and small mammals.
Sprinkle explains: “The pet adoption wave ties not solely to the stay-at-home pandemic interval, however extra particularly to having children underfoot at house, given faculty closures and the disruption of leisure and leisure actions. Provided that pet possession is a discretionary expense, and sometimes a substantial one, multiple-pet households are typically comparatively higher-income, additional fueling the pet product and repair premiumization development that has reshaped the pet business and made it an apple of buyers’ eyes.”
7. E-Bike Gross sales Increase as Shoppers Search Enjoyable, Secure Alternate options to Public Transport
When lockdowns struck in March, bike retailers had been bracing for a significant hunch. As a substitute, the alternative occurred. Demand for bikes and notably e-bikes soared worldwide as shoppers sought enjoyable, secure options to public transport throughout the pandemic, and supply chains struggled to keep up.
Freedonia analyst Gleb Mytko says Europe’s significance to the worldwide e-bike market will proceed to develop submit pandemic: “The area gives producers numerous alternatives as a result of it contains a number of the world’s most developed e-bike markets (Germany, Netherlands) in addition to markets with immense progress potential, like France. As we speak, each regional and international e-bikes are making strategic investments in Europe, increasing their gross sales and distribution networks, and rolling out the subsequent era of e-bikes.”
Flurry of Renovation Exercise Boosts Demand for House Enchancment Merchandise
Spending extra time at house than ever earlier than, householders have been placing a number of the cash they saved on canceled journeys and holidays this yr towards house enhancements.
8. Exterior Renovations to Rise in 2021, Benefiting Wooden-Look Siding & Fencing
The outlook for house enchancment initiatives in 2021 is anticipated to stay bullish, says Freedonia analyst Matt Zielenski, as initiatives shift from inside purposes like kitchen and bath renovations, to exterior purposes, similar to substitute of siding and fencing.
“In lots of areas of the US, the look of wooden is most desired — it may possibly actually add to the curb enchantment and worth of a house — however many shoppers balk on the work wanted to maintain wooden wanting pristine,” Zielinski explains. “This may gas demand for such merchandise as vinyl and wood-plastic composite (WPC) fencing and mobile PVC and fiber cement siding — these supplies may be made to carefully resemble wooden lumber, however supply longer product lifespans and the prospect of a lot much less common upkeep.”
9. Staycationing Householders Bolster Gross sales of Swimming pools & Out of doors Residing Merchandise
Already a fast-growing market, out of doors dwelling received a lift throughout the pandemic from staycationing householders with further money available on account of canceled trip plans. Caught at house this summer time, these shoppers flooded pool and spa retailers with extra orders than they may sustain with, and gross sales of merchandise like outdoor furniture, heating products, and kitchen equipment that improve the coziness of pool/spa areas and different out of doors areas noticed a bump, as nicely.
Going ahead, out of doors dwelling merchandise are anticipated to stay widespread for house renovations, and whereas demand is usually extremely seasonal, staycationing tendencies are prone to keep robust past the pandemic, as travel and tourism economies face a protracted recovery.
10. Plumbing Merchandise Demand Bolstered by Tub Renovations, Hygiene/Sanitation Issues
Tub renovations have all the time been widespread with householders, much more so throughout the pandemic. Regardless of decreased exercise in most nonresidential constructing development segments because of the pandemic, nonetheless, spending on bathtub renovations in some business buildings can also be rising — notably public-facing institutions like workplaces, eating places, colleges and universities, and journey amenities, as they retrofit for Covid-19 security — which is supporting demand for plumbing merchandise.
Freedonia’s Kent Furst explains, “An elevated give attention to hygiene and sanitation has pushed demand for high-tech touchless fixtures, notably in rest room areas. However the general business market is hurting as workplace and retail areas stay closed or underutilized, limiting funding in (and substitute of) plumbing merchandise.”
In regards to the writer of this text: Peter Kusnic is a Content material Author with The Freedonia Group, the place he researches and writes research targeted on an array of industries