ComScore, a website that monitors websites and mobile apps around the world, has studied the changes in digital behavior in India due to the corona virus and lockdown. The study is not shocking, but a month ago no one had imagined it, nor had prepared to deal with this situation.
News consumption increased:If we compare the data from February 10-16 to the data between March 16-22, then it shows that there has been a 61 percent jump in the general news category. This boom in general news category started around Holi. If you remember, the Prime Minister and the President canceled the Holi meeting, the reason was the Corona epidemic. Soon after Holi, the World Health Organization also declared it a global epidemic. After which people made a lot of rounds of news websites. Even if we compare the data of March 9-15 between March 16-22, there is a 50 percent jump.
Users increased on business, finance sites:
The lockdown has resulted in worldwide market collapses, the US’s Dougons or India’s Sensex and the Nifty all being around 30-40 per cent below their peak levels. Almost as much as the market has gone down, the user has increased on their news sites.
Unique users of business news category sites have increased about 37 percent, with people also spending more time on these sites than before. There is a jump of about 24 percent in the time spent. If we compare the data of March 9-15 with the data of March 16-22, then 22% more unique users have come on business sites between March 16-22.
Trust on government information increased:
Government institutions are the most reliable source of information at the time of an epidemic or disaster. In such a situation, news institutions also depend on government institutions for data and information. The same trend has been seen during Corona. Government websites saw a steep decline in the month of February and early March, but as the news of Corona increased in the news, the visits on government websites increased. Due to Corona virus, 31 percent unique visitors of public sector websites and apps increased, while time spent also increased by 27 percent.
It saw an increase for the first time during 16–22 March. If we compare the data of March 9-15 with the data of March 16-22, then there is a jump of 21 percent.
Users increased on health-related sites:
People afraid of Corona came online and tried to find a cure for it. From the treatment of corona to how to increase the immunity of the body and how to wear the mask, how effective the mask was, the public turned to information sharing sites related to healthcare.
If you compare the data of March 10-16 with the data between March 16-22, then it shows that 25% visits have increased on these sites. The special thing is that there has been a jump of about 146 percent on the sites related to healthcare retail in the same period. However, the boom started in the third week of February.
Massive decline in users of sports sites:
Because of Corona, not only the playing fields around the world are lying vacant, but the sites that report on them and the mobile apps that display them are also victims of the users. The biggest drop in sports-related sites and apps occurred after the second week of March. If we compare the data between March 9-15 and March 16-22, then the users of digital ventures related to sports have fallen by 76 percent, while the time spent on these is a decline of 87 percent.
Heavy damage to travel sites:
When trains, buses, flights are all closed, it is obvious that the business related to travel will also be in loss. Since no one knows when the Karona crisis will end, so people are not buying tickets for May or June.
If we compare the data of 10–16 February of travel booking websites and apps with the data between 16–22 March, then it shows that there is a 55% decline in visits of these platforms.
Hotel business in crisis:
Due to Karona, the hotel business has been affected very badly apart from travel. Since most hotels are closed, there is no user on the sites booking for them. The website and app related to hotel booking had the most users in the last two months between March 2-8, but after Holi, there was such a decline which is still going on. If we compare the data of March 2-8 with the data of March 16-22, then there is a decline of 66 percent.
Decline in users of car transportation sites:
The companies which suffered the most during the lockdown include companies like Ola-Uber. The website and app related to car transportation has seen a decline of about 43 percent. This decline is between 10-16 February and 16-22 March.
Unique pattern on site associated with airline industry:
A unique pattern appears in the user graph on sites related to airline bookings. After the second week of February, it was steadily declining, but after the second week of March, there was a sudden rise in it. That is, a week before the international and domestic flights stopped in India, people have visited the sites related to airline bookings a lot.
If we compare the data of 10-16 February with the data between 24 February and 1 March, then between 24 February and 1 March, there is a decline of 53 per cent. On the other hand, if you compare the data of March 2-8 with that of March 16-22, then between March 16-22, it shows a growth of 61 percent.
Interest in online games increased:
Outdoor game shifting to online games. If we compare the data of online game players between 10–16 February with the data between 16–22 March, then it shows a 24% visit growth. During this time time spent on such website and app has also increased by 21 percent.
The BARC data also showed a similar pattern:
Prior to this, a similar pattern was found in Bark and Nielsen’s research. According to the data of Bark-Nielsen, no matter the platform, people have fiercely consumed news. While the viewership of news on TV has increased by 298 percent. In the second week of Kovid-19, one of the 3 users using digital services has done online news. That is, 34 percent of Internet mobile users have consumed news through apps and websites. During this period, users of the app increased by 17 percent and users of news websites by 47 percent. Time spread on news app has increased by 45 percent while total visits on news website have increased by 42 percent.
What can happen next:
Most of the news related to the epidemic has come now and this has been going on for almost a month, so it is possible that people’s interest in the news related to Corona is reduced now. From the second week of April, more spikes can be seen on entertainment related apps. People sitting empty, getting bored will prefer to spend the next few days on apps like Hotstar, Amazon Prime and Netphilix instead of the news app. However, their users and time spent have increased in the last days, which may increase further.
Data Sources – ComScore, BARC, NielsenP