SlickText survey reveals disparity about consumer comfort levels based on geography and other factors
As COVID-19 vaccines become widely available, safety protocols are slowly lifting and businesses reopening. A new survey from SlickText, a proven leader in text communications, invited consumers to share input on when they’ll feel comfortable resuming pre-pandemic activities. The results rank consumers’ comfort levels with attending live concerts, traveling by air, eating in restaurants, and frequenting places of worship. Businesses can use this data to guide their plans for hiring, reopening, customer communications and safety measure implementations.
“Reopening in a Post-Pandemic World: Consumer Preferences” examines consumers’ comfort levels with returning to various events and places of business. Results show that while a decent number of people have already resumed pre-pandemic activities, others plan to wait up to another six months. The report divides responses by geography and other factors, its breakdowns offering insight into how companies can increase consumer confidence and reduce pain points. The data also provides a rough timeline for when businesses and organizations can expect an uptick in business.
“While organizations like sporting arenas, entertainment venues, restaurants and airlines have more say as they develop and implement their individual reopening policies, ultimately it’s the consumers who decide whether or not to frequent their establishments,” shares Meg Scales, CMO of SlickText. “As the nation reopens, customer preferences and sentiments rapidly evolve. It’s vital to continue analyzing data to understand what those consumers expect to feel safe — and when they’ll be comfortable resuming pre-pandemic activities and habits. Businesses can use the information we collected to strategize the most effective use of their resources to ensure they not only meet but exceed customer expectations.”
Over 1,000 consumers aged 18 to 54+ analyzed their levels of comfort engaging with activities like sports events, live music, air travel, restaurant dining, museum visits, and attendance at workout classes and places of worship.
Survey respondents identified continued mask-wearing as the most important safety measure for them to feel comfortable gathering in large groups. Respondents also named enhanced disinfecting and fewer possibilities to contact others. Businesses can integrate touchless ticketing and purchases and limit lineups to reduce undesired contact. 73% expressed tolerances of a 5% cost increase if the additional charge covered enhanced cleaning or safety protocols.
Nearly 28% of respondents expected brands to increase enforcement of social distancing in their stores; over 19% want more touchless payment options; and nearly 18% wished for better contact tracing.
Eagerness to resume restaurant dining in person. A majority (49%) of respondents said they have already dined at a restaurant. Only 10% plan on waiting six months or longer before they dine out.
Divided opinions about when to resume air travel. California respondents (29%) already feel comfortable with air travel, while a majority of New York respondents (25%) plan to wait at least six months before flying.
Longing for live music. New York and Florida respondents miss live music shows the most. Survey participants from both states said they’d feel comfortable attending a concert in one to two months, whereas other states plan to wait longer before gathering in large groups.