Recently, the northeastern region of the United States was struck by a blizzard which caused accidents, power outages, heavy traffic and even some casualties. Needless to say, the blizzard will affect the e-commerce market situation in the US, especially in the northeastern region.
So, if you are selling mainly to the US market, read more to find out how the blizzard will affect the US e-commerce market from the time it happened.
Blizzard and Its Aftermath
In the past few days, a blizzard struck different states in the northeast part of the United States, including New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Due to the blizzard, several northeastern states declared a state of emergency to address the weather disturbance and its aftermath.
In New York, the snow in Central Park, New York exceeded 10 inches according to the National Weather Service. To put into perspective, this is double of the snowfall from last year – which is 4.8 inches only!
In New Jersey, Governor Phil Murphy declared a state of emergency to address the issue concerning the blizzard. He even ordered state offices to be closed as the blizzard hit the state. Rail and bus services are also suspended by the New Jersey Department of Transportation due to the weather disturbance as well.
In Pennsylvania, several trucks slipped out of control at Interstate 80. A total of 66 vehicles – 55 commercial vehicles and 11 passenger vehicles – were involved in the said accident. This incident also caused multiple injuries and two casualties – one from the crash and one due to the person’s medical condition while being stuck on traffic.
In short, the blizzard’s effects on the northeastern part of the US is really bad – note that there are other accidents, injuries and casualties caused by the blizzard in the different parts of northeastern US.
Needless to say, businesses are also affected by the blizzard. One apparent effects of the blizzard against businesses is the delay it caused due to accidents which led to heavy traffic.
More Than Just The Blizzard
However, the blizzard and its aftermath are just the tip of the iceberg. If anything, the blizzard only worsen the already problem currently being faced by many Americans today – the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, among others.
Here are some of the factors got worse the situation after the blizzard struck the country:
Pandemic-Related Financial Problems
Because of the lockdowns and restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic, many people were laid off from their jobs and businesses – especially small businesses – closed down. This apparently took a toll on many Americans’ wallet.
According to a MagnifyMoney survey, 43% of consumers will have to tap their emergency funds due to the coronavirus pandemic. To those who got laid off due to pandemic-related reasons, that number will even jump to 64%!
As long as businesses can’t get up due to the lockdown restrictions, unemployment may continue to rise. The US government’s solution since the beginning of the pandemic was to offer stimulus checks – but where is it?
Where Are The Stimulus Checks?
The $1,200 stimulus check was expected to be delivered to millions of Americans eligible for it, however, they still hadn’t received the stimulus check. In addition to that, the new rounds of stimulus check for December dropped from $1,200 to $600, making many Americans angry – considering that the first check was already delayed for nine months.
What This Means For Your Business?
Due to the financial and economic problems faced by many Americans due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we can expect that they will spend less for pure consumption. Even if they are willing to spend for the holidays, the high demand coming from high volumes of orders plus the recent blizzard that struck the northeastern part of the US meant that deliveries will be slowed down and delays will increase as couriers like FedEx, USPS and UPS are dealing with high volumes of orders.
Right now, many Americans are concerned with winter, especially to those that are struck by the blizzard. For instance, heaters were easily sold out for many stores due to very high demand. Many Americans are also looking for winter-related products to ease the cold. If you can address this demand, it will be good for your business and your customers.
In short, e-commerce business in many parts of the US would be slow and low. Hopefully, in a short period, the American economy will rebound and grow again so everyone is happy – it will be a win-win situation for businesses and their customers!