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Mobile Monday: Internet Use Up 50% In European Countries, Online Luxury Retailer Apps See Download Boosts

Posted Mar 22, 2020

Countries affected by COVID-19 are having to acclimate to the new normal of people staying indoors for the majority of their days. The huge increase in work and leisure activities at home has placed a great demand on internet companies. Internet usage is reported to have surged up to 50% in some European countries. Meanwhile, online luxury retailers have seen boosts in app downloads over the past 90 days. Get more details in this week’s Mobile Monday!

Internet Usage in European Countries Surge Up to 50%
Vodafone has reported that there have been increases in internet usage of up to 50% in multiple European countries since the Coronavirus spread has kept families indoors. The mobile operator did not specify the countries but it is likely to include Spain, Italy, and France because of the government-mandated shutdowns that have been put in place in those locations. In addition to adults working from home, the increase in data also comes from children accessing educational materials as schools are closed. With no events or gatherings allowed, families are turning to streaming services and digital games for entertainment.

Vodafone also reports that data usage is already up 30% in the United Kingdom where they have 18 million customers. They expect this to continue rising as the government’s strategy follows that of its European neighbors. U.K. data usage increases are starting much earlier in the day, from lunchtime, reflecting the switch to working from home. The peak of usage is 6 pm to 8 pm, which was typical before the COVID-19 outbreak.

Luxury eCommerce Apps Beating Out Department Stores in Mobile Downloads
Online luxury retailer apps have seen boosts in downloads according to Apptopia. Over the past 90 days, apps including Yoox and Farfetch have collectively totaled approximately 4 million downloads. This is far ahead of multi-brand upscale department stores like Nordstrom and Bloomingdale’s. In the same period, that category totaled just under 1.5 million downloads. Consignment luxury apps are trailing just behind the department stores with over 1 million downloads.

While companies like Yoox and Farfetch have always had an online presence, upscale department stores have balanced promotional efforts for their brick and mortar stores and their retail apps. With many countries closing stores during the Coronavirus situation, retailers need to adjust their strategies to better acquire users and increase sales on their apps. Consignment luxury players could catch up to department stores if consumers become more conscious of spending during this time.

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