Kayak - REI

After the end of the quarantine, consumers rushed to buy a variety of goods for outdoor activities.

Back in January of this year, the non-profit organization Outdoor Foundation published the sad statistics, according to which less than 20% Americans had a rest in the fresh air at least once a week. This is immediately a billion people less than it was 10 years ago. At the same time, more than half of the population is never in nature at all.

Representatives of the organization then said that most likely the number of campers in nature will continue to decline. And the main reasons for this are work, new technologies and the increasing complexity of going out into the countryside. In other words, people began to work more, while spending more time on game consoles and tablets, while leaving the centers of strongly sprawling cities became much more difficult.

Naturally, with a decrease in interest in spending time in nature, a decline in sales of related products began, such as tents and accessories for active games. However, the coronavirus pandemic has changed everything. And today, retailers are noticing a sharp increase in interest in such products.

REI tent

At first, the growth of sales was promoted by a banal panic. Not knowing what to expect in the future, consumers rushed to buy all kinds of water filters, flashlights, fishing tackle, etc. Bicycles followed, followed by inflatable pools, hammocks and trampolines. People, forced to constantly be in their yards, began to look for ways to have a little fun and diversify their pastime.

As a result, shops selling goods for outdoor activities faced an unexpected problem for them - a shortage of literally everything. Kayaks, surfboards, equipment for hiking and mountaineering disappeared from the sale, and there were shortages of sleeping bags and camping furniture. The sellers turned out to be completely unprepared for such a turn of affairs and they had to urgently solve problems with supplies, optimize their chains.

According to data from some sellers, order volumes jumped sharply in the spring, followed by a short-term decline, after which they again increased sharply by early August. In some cases, there was a five-fold increase in sales compared to the same period last year. Many stores even had to increase staff in order to be able to serve everyone who wants to make a purchase.

It is highly doubtful that all the people who bought camping equipment rushed to nature. It is much more likely that they decided to equip campsites in their yards. It is also possible that we are seeing the same effect as in the case of toilet paper - many people shop, simply succumbing to the general mood (and most likely just panic). That is, many succumbed to the idea of buying tents and awnings only because they saw their neighbors buying them up en masse. And it is not yet clear whether sales will continue in the near future, when summer is over, whether winter equipment will also sell well. There are also concerns that due to the nature of the supply of goods for active pastime, interruptions in their supply may also be observed in 2021.


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