By Hemal Gathani
The world has changed vastly and will continue to do so more rapidly and vividly when it comes to interacting with technology. More so, in the Pre-Covid-19 era, while technology had become a way of life, there were still several companies that did not harness the full potential of technology. Many of them experienced slower growth on the digital channels for various reasons – not a strategic priority, not enough budgets or high inertia for customers to move to online medium (e.g. ordering online groceries, medicines, etc).
With the new normal when social distancing is a requisite, everyone – individuals and corporations are forced to adopt digitally as much as they can. According to a Nielsen report, every day, 3.4 billion people approximately connect to the internet and spend, on average, six-and-half hours online. Here are the top technology trends that will reshape our post-Covid world.
The first thing that the lockdown did was to force people to start using alternate ways to connect, communicate, and collaborate. Video calls, collaboration tools, and communication channels will continue to increase and improve in the post-Covid world. Post covid-19 many companies will provide work from home; as seen in the lockdown work from home doesn’t impact productivity and most of the work can be done from home. Job searches for remote work or work from home in the country have increased by over 442 per cent between February and July, the highest globally, according to a recent report. (Source: Business Today)
With everyone in the industry looking to increase technology adoption and pushing the adoption of digital channels, there will be a strong need to differentiate. UI or UX design has gained importance as the focus has shifted to user experience in the recent times of pandemic. Providing best-in-class user experience will become a way for companies to differentiate. During lockdown, we have seen how user experience can make or break the consumer stickiness with the app or website. It will play a huge post pandemic as the lockdown customer experiences the ease of use from some app website and OTT platform and they will demand the same from others as well.
Digital Banking and Payments:
The banking and payments industry experienced tremendous growth post demonetization initially and slowed down a bit after a while. But will now regain growth and increase the adoption across all age groups including the elderly population where the adoption rate was lesser than the millennial. Now people will be vary to touch
notes and coins from the unknown, this will help in pushing the digital economy. Three billion global users will have access to retail banking services through smartphones, tablets, smartwatches and PC’s by 2021.
In the lockdown the consumption of media has increased multifold but it has now stabilised. OTT platform has experienced a surge in traffic. Weekly time spent watching connected TVs grew significantly, rising by more than 1 billion hours as weeks passed. OTT platforms will continue to experience a faster growth rate than the pre-COVID world. Popular platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime or hotstar will be the new media centre. Video-streaming platforms have seen over 113 percent rise in the number of average users since the nationwide lockdown according to a recent report by WPP.
While it is given that eCommerce will become the primary mode of shopping, it’ll be important to adapt by making it relevant in this changing environment. It is set to record a steep increase of 25.9% in 2020 according to the report by GlobalData. Companies will need to rethink how they sell online. Users are now looking for larger packs, combos and safer delivery options to minimize their risk of getting infected via delivery partners. The good user experience will enhance the likelihood of consumers returning to the same site to buy more whereas the bad user experience can ruin the exposure and lose the client. The e-commerce market in India is set to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19.6% between 2019 and 2023 (Source GlobalData).
Online Healthcare and Wellness:
With restricted or no access to gyms, pools, and spas, the wellness industry now has to reimagine how they can continue serving their customers online. Providing virtual services such as online tutorials, DIY kits, virtual counselling will be the new norm. Hospitals and clinics will need to encourage usage of online channels to diagnose and prescribe medicines and treatments to ensure the safety of their own and their patients. It will also bridge the gap of urban- rural divide; whereas most of the health practitioners are based out of urban areas. Digital intervention in healthcare is expected to drive the industry at a CAGR of 23% by 2020, according to recent study.
For the companies to succeed in this post-Covid world, it will be extremely important for them to prioritize the initiatives that the customer wants and needs. Those who will do this well will succeed.
About the Author:
Hemal Gathani, Co-founder, ZEUX Innovation
A first-generation entrepreneur, Hemal commands 15+ years of experience in managing teams and driving measurable results in the UX industry for marquee clients. Hemal has led over 100 projects – from inception to delivery – and architected several large UX transformation programs including the world’s first BOT of a UX operation for a large global telecom. Having a passion to learn, unlearn and relearn – Hemal has also mentored large UX teams comprising analysts, researchers, and designers across regions. He also played a key role in establishing UX skill set in India by expanding UX Training and Certification Program across major cities in India. There are now over 5000 certified usability professionals in India. Hemal is a Mechanical Engineer and went on to earn his Master’s degree in Science from the University of South Florida.
(Views expressed in the article are of the author.)