Not to make light of a very serious situation, but I got an email the other day from my sister who teaches in the New York City school district: “Yeah! I am an online classroom teacher! Just heard the platform crashed. Oh, well. At least I changed out of my PJs into sweats. Thank goodness spring means dresses. B/C pants may never fit again!” From the less-than-perfect reality of working from home to her “making lemonade” philosophy, she epitomizes COVID-19 consumer behavior that has become daily life for countless people around the world.
The world has changed immeasurably in recent weeks as the coronavirus pandemic shuts down country after country. We can’t place a value on the human toll; that will be incalculable. But there will be a definite and substantial economic toll.
The first order of business for companies is tactical crisis management. This includes everything from physically protecting workers and customers to keeping business moving as much as possible. Looking ahead, it is critical to understand potential long-term outcomes related to the way people live and shop.
Health first
Staying alive and helping keep others alive is the top priority right now. A recent GfK survey in the US shows that regular use of hand sanitizer nearly doubled between early and mid-March.
Stores and workplaces are performing extra cleaning processes and requiring physical distancing behavior. Manufacturers are retooling to produce sanitation and medical supplies.
Regular healthcare is on pause – or going online. Even as healthcare systems become overloaded with coronavirus pandemic patients, other health problems are not disappearing, and a growing number of people are turning to telemedicine options such as the UK’s Patient Access system.
In the long run, the outbreak may turn out to be a turning point for telehealth, making it a greater part of healthcare solutions. Post-COVID-19 consumer behavior may

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