There is no denying that the pandemic has changed life as we know it. From completely changing the world’s economy to the smallest details in our daily routines, the pandemic has truly changed our lives. And our shopping habits are no exception.
Here are 10 products that were bought this year because of the “mischievous” COVID-19:
Home workout equipment
Buying fitness equipment became the go to method for people to workout with lockdowns and social distancing in place. Al Bawaba reports that there was a 55% increase in downloading fitness apps for the first quarter of this year compared to last year’s. Furthermore, the sale of gym equipment increased by 600% in GCC alone. The surge in sales of home workout equipment comes as no surprise with most people trying to maintain a healthier lifestyle while stuck at home.
The fear of catching the virus has unfortunately spread into every household. With this fear roaming around, many are buying thermometers as a way to monitor their health.
Who would have thought that the next big thing to buy would be face masks? Face masks are a crucial part of decreasing transmissions and saving lives, says WHO. Between 2020 and 2027, the market size of disposable face masks is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 53%.
Another protective and imperative way to protect ourselves against the virus is wearing plastic gloves. While always wearing gloves might not prove to be useful to battling the virus, the CDC says that wearing them when cleaning all “high-touch areas” is necessary.
As the fear of the virus continues to spread, many are turning to buying pulse oximeters. Pulse oximeters are devices used to measure a person’s oxygen levels. According to CNN, US sales of the device surged with the confirmation of the first COVID-19 case earlier this year. Google searches for the device also surged in April 2020.
Many people were faced with the dilemma of not being able to eat at their favorite restaurants during the lockdown. However, meal kits were here to the rescue! Many restaurants started preparing meal kits for people to buy and prepare at home. For instance, in UAE, Salt Burgers, Couqley, and Bystro are selling meal kits to meet the demand of their customers.
In the US alone, the earnings of Germany-based meal kit company HelloFresh reached about $70M in the first quarter of 2020.
With many countries across the globe turning to home-schooling, it is no surprise that there was an increase in buying printers as parents tried providing the best access to school materials. HP Inc. reports an 18% increase in its printer sales in Q4 of this year.
The pandemic has pushed more companies to adopt working from home. This transition in conducting work tasks has led people to buy equipment they might need to make working at home more convenient. It is reported that the demand for home-office equipment, such as keyboards, microphones, external monitors, laptop mice and standing desks, increased earlier this year.
Entertainment gadgets and tools
Many people are opting for entertainment tools to spend their time at home during the lockdowns. With families looking for ways to entertain themselves and their kids, puzzles and board games become one of the go-to entertainment options. Jigsaw puzzle sales increased tremendously in the US for instance. Another example is inflatable pools. The demand for inflatable pools also increased as parents looked for ways to keep their kids busy and entertained.
The lockdown has sure led people to channel their inner chefs and bakers. Whether as a way to lose track of time or make comfort food, many families turned to using baking tools during the lockdown. For instance, bread machines were sold four times more than the usual, says NBD Group.
What about you? What are the products you never thought you would buy if it wasn’t for the pandemic?
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