Market Watch

With luxury out, shopping not the same for consumers

Minna Zutshi

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 27

Covid-19 has impacted businesses but slowly the businesses are limping back to normalcy, though the new normal is yet to register on the consumers’ collective psyche.

Covid has changed the consumer behaviour. There are hardly any buyers for higher priced pet accessories. Even for pet feed there are few buyers for premium quality.

Randeep Sehgal, owner, Sehgal Pet Mart, Ludhiana

Consumers reluctant to spend on ‘non-essentials’

Consumers now clearly differentiate between luxury and absolute necessity. The rule as of now is: Luxury is best avoided. As Randeep Sehgal from the Sehgal Pet Mart in BRS Nagar says, Covid-19 has changed the consumer behaviour. “There are hardly any buyers for higher priced pet accessories. Even for the pet feed, the premium quality has fewer buyers. But we, at Sehgal Pet Mart, are doing moderately good job as we provide medicines too. It is summer time and pets suffer from various ailments. Pet parents come to our shop to get medications,” says Sehgal.

Small is preferred

There is a lull in the sale of new puppies of larger breeds. People are opting for smaller breeds that can keep children engaged and are also low maintenance. “Larger breeds of dogs are not much in demand. The smaller breeds like Beagles, shih tzu are preferred,” adds Sehgal.

A few issues that he is trying to grapple with include the unsold items that are nearing their expiry date. “We are worried that the feed and pet food items that are nearing their expiry date may spell financial loss for us. Some companies are cooperating but others are not,” says Sehgal

You have to fix an appointment. Applicants need not visit the centre. They can send their documents. If they qualify, then the case is processed further.

Amrita Mangat, MD, Education Canada Services, Ludhiana

Shops have changed

Since the outbreak of Covid-19, many shops have refurbished their sales-counter to make way for coronavirus related precautions. In many shops, customers are not allowed inside establishments.

“Only one customer is allowed inside at a time. We have changed our settings. Even one who appears absolutely normal might be an asymptomatic carrier of Covid-19,” says Sehgal.

Online option

At Education Canada Services, new admissions are being done online. “You have to fix an appointment. Applicants need not visit the centre They can send their documents. If they qualify, then the case is processed further,” says Amrita Mangat, MD, Education Canada Services.

The centre reopened on May 19. “We are open from 9.30 am to 5 pm. By appointment. So, no walk-ins,” adds Amrita.

Covid-19 has made a big difference as those, who were to apply for September will be unable to go as (the exam) results are pending. In normal times, these would have been very busy days, according to Amrita.

Adopting a stoic approach bordering on optimism, Amrita says: “All businesses have taken a hit. Nothing to cry about. We are with everyone else. The situation should improve. Hopefully.”

Sanitisers, masks a must

The rule is clear and unambiguous. You have to wear face mask and also carry a sanitizer. At the entrance of the office of Education Canada Services, there is a bucket and soap for hand wash. At Sehgal Pet Mart too face mask is mandatory. Those without face mask are requested to wear the mask and then only come back.

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