New Delhi, October 28: Coronavirus-induced lockdowns across the country have transformed consumers' buying behaviour and hyperlocal distribution model, and distribution alliances andĀ anĀ omni-channel strategy will be key to business growth,Ā according to aĀ joint report by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu India and FICCI.

As per the report, called 'REBOOT', while the pandemicĀ broughtĀ massive disruptions across theĀ value chain of theĀ consumer sector, most companies adapted by building agile business models and innovative marketing strategies, along with expanding their presence through the online platforms to reach their consumers.Ā Sleep Disorders Related to Life in Lockdown.

"The prolonged lockdowns have also dramaticallyĀ transformed consumer buyingĀ behaviour while makingĀ themĀ more health and socially conscious," Deloitte India Partner Rajat Wahi said. He added that this has created newĀ opportunities for businesses to develop hyperlocal delivery models, use conversational AI (artificialĀ intelligence) and build omni-channel retail toĀ acquire and serve customers.

"As brands adapt to the 'new normal', the key to sustenance and growth is likely to be anĀ agile business modelĀ that minimises disruptionsĀ in the future," Wahi said. The report said demand for consumerĀ goods in rural markets has increased due to the return of theĀ migrant workers to their states due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"COVID-19 has led to massiveĀ reverse migration, which in turn has driven up rural demand,Ā favouring companies with strong rural distribution," it said. The report also said health concerns and the need to build immunity have led consumers to buy home sanitation and immunity-boosting products.

"As a result, theseĀ categories have seen major growth since March 2020, and this is likely to continue into 2021," the report said. It pointedĀ out that the companiesĀ had to reconfigure their distribution models to exploreĀ omni-channelĀ models.

"The pandemic, with frequent lockdowns, compelled companies to re-configure their distribution models within a short period, even forging newĀ partnerships and alliances to achieve that," it added.

The report also emphasises on the need for consumer brands to reboot their businessesĀ in view of the disruption and the changing consumer behaviour. As businesses need to realign their business models and partnerships, enhance consumer experience through technology and analytics, build resilient distribution, develop their omni-channel presence, operate efficiently,Ā and thrive by focusing on sustainability, the report said.