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How COVID-19 impacts consumer behavior, leading to a +53% growth of InstaShop

Filed on March 23, 2020 | Last updated on March 23, 2020 at 04.13 pm

John Tsioris, founder and CEO of InstaShop, talks about the strong surge of demand over the last 3 weeks amid the COVID-19 pandemic and shares insights on how the current situation and consumer behavior has altered, impacting the service; while he also talks about the company's methods and initiatives to ensure the well-being of employees and customers during the Covid-19 outbreak.

Have you seen an increase in orders since the outbreak?

As expected, due to self-isolation, we have seen our orders increase at a month-on-month rate at now more than 53 per cent, having started at the end of February and is continuing throughout March. In addition, our basket value increased by more than 61 per cent, as many more users are stocking up on requirements. We also see new and old users more actively utilising services such as pharmacy and pet shop delivery services, and we are therefore working on expanding the coverage of these.

In addition to seeing increased order frequency from existing users, we are now also seeing the trial opportunity to onboard new users. Based on the adoption rate we have seen a 70 per cent increase in our app downloads compared to February, with a large inflow of first-time users. We expect online sales to see a peak and eventually normalize in the next three weeks.

The demand for particular categories, such as hygiene products and non-perishable food, have seen exponential growth rates of more than 125 per cent during this period. Brands such as Dettol, Fine and American Garden have grown up to 800 per cent.

How are you ensuring the well-being of employees while keeping their morale high?

We put our people and the community first, and as we understand that delivery services are critical for the control of the pandemic, we strive to keep our service live and robust. We have implemented several social distancing measures across our offices, provided masks, intensified sanitation of the premises and also applied a work from home policy for certain departments and vulnerable individuals with weak immune systems, respiratory conditions, pregnant woman, people living with a pregnant woman and individuals living with the elderly.

All health and safety precautionary measures have been communicated internally, and trainings are being rolled-out to hundreds of our retail partners, to make sure delivery personnel are aware of the necessary actions to be taken to stall the spread of Covid-19, such as frequently washing hands and maintain distance from costumers during delivery of products.

What initiatives are you taking during this challenging time?

Our primary objective is to make sure our service continues to provide a seamless delivery option to members of the community who are responsibly practicing self-isolation. We are closely working with our retail and brand partners from an operational perspective to ensure product availability, and to satisfy the increased demand from our users. Our team is optimising processes and technology in order to cater to this demand in the best possible way. In addition to all measures, we are also working on increasing our workforce by 30 per cent within the next three months.

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This content comes from KT Engage, the brand marketing unit of Khaleej Times.