The pandemic has significantly changed the consumer behavior of Germans. This is also evident from the figures collected by the online auctioneer Ebay. Which slow-moving goods became bestsellers and vice versa?
Dhe auction house Ebay sees itself with its 18 million customers in Germany as a mirror of social developments. Every year the company publishes an annual review of the shopping behavior of Germans. Usually these dates are not really surprising, but as we know, everything is different this year. And so Corona has made a lasting impact on the Ebay search statistics – so sustainably that it can be used to retell the development of the pandemic.
“Many products that the individual consumer did not attach great importance to in the past year are now part of everyday life,” states the trading platform. Accordingly, products for medical needs, such as disposable masks, gloves and face masks, were among the top trends in the inquiries. On average, a multiple pack of mouthguards was bought every 20 seconds on Ebay in 2020.
The closings of hairdressing salons during the first lockdown resulted in high demand for the shaving accessories category. Not everyone wanted to make friends with a corona mat, and so hair clippers posted an increase of 314 percent. Make-up utensils met with less interest. If you stay at home, you don’t need to beautify your face: the search for make-up products fell by a quarter.
Tickets completely uninteresting
In the absence of events, the interest in the event-related categories was almost zero. The number of searches for tickets fell by 98 percent. Accessories and decorations for festive occasions – such as weddings and christenings – fell by 85 percent. Ebay can prove with its number of inquiries what many suspected: “In 2020 everything will revolve around your own home.”
And at home, many home office employees first had to upgrade. Anyone who takes part in conferences and meetings virtually needs a webcam: an increase of 2149 percent. The search queries for notebook and desktop accessories rose by 124 percent, those for office chairs by 100 percent. School bags and rucksacks, on the other hand, were far less in demand. The minus of 29 percent illustrates the trend towards homeschooling, towards relocating school lessons at home.
And there, many Germans worked not only for their own company, but also on their own premises. “The home improvement category recorded the strongest increase in search queries this year,” states eBay. The company suspects that many repairs that had been postponed for a long time were catching up or wanted to “let off steam” themselves. For whatever reason: “Painting supplies” increased by 645 percent, “Spare parts and tools” by 404 percent, “Installation: heating and air conditioning” by 225 percent, “Renewable energies” and “Building materials and components” by 208 percent each .
Fitness is very popular
Interest in fitness shot up at a similar level. Because studios were closing, many upgraded their home sports corner – which is clear from the plus for dumbbells (605 percent), “strength training and weights” (496 percent) and “Yoga & Pilates” (216 percent). In the hot summer, swimming pools and pools had a special boom with an increase of 98 percent. The Corona year was also a good year for bicycles and e-bikes. The two sectors grew by 32 and 60 percent respectively. Golf training aids caused a surprise (plus 140 percent): With them, players can also improve their handicap off the course. Certificates, medals and trophies for sporting events were again not required without competitions: minus 97 percent. Without open slopes, many Ebayers saved themselves the look at offers of ski boots (minus 89 percent) and snowboards (minus 71 percent) in winter.
For the entertainment sector, VR glasses (plus 143 percent) instead of cinema, Nintendo (plus 180 percent) instead of theater. But analog games were also well received. During the first lockdown, searches for puzzles and puzzles rose by almost 400 percent, and trading cards were even more popular in the fall. Even familiar things came back into focus. “Chess” was searched for 43 percent more often than in 2019.