Consumer Behavior

The Impact of COVID-19 on Apparel Consumers’ Channel Selections and Omni-Channel Shopping Behaviors

  • Yini Chen (Washington State University)
  • Vicki McCracken (Washington State University)
  • Ting Chi (Washington State University)


The breakout of Covid-19 in 2020 has changed consumers’ shopping behaviors and brought retailers many challenges. Before the hit of the pandemic, traditional retail businesses that relied on brick-and-mortar channel had already suffered the intense competition from emerging online retailers. Now the pandemic worsened the situation and urged many traditional retailers to add new retail channels or shopping modes, so they can survive the disaster. Many marketers and researchers asserted that flexible marketing strategies, such as omnichannel retailing, are helping retailers to deal with the troubles and challenges they face during the ongoing pandemic (Chen and Chi, 2021; Nguyen Tran et al., 2020; Taylor, 2020).  Before Covid-19, many retailers were hesitant to invest in omnichannel retailing format, such as online order, curbside pickup. The pandemic has forced retailers to adopt these new shopping forms to survive (Taylor, 2020). Omni-channel retailing is a business model in which different channels are fully integrated to provide a seamless experience throughout a customer’s journey (Beck and Rygl, 2015). Although researchers and marketers acknowledged the need and benefits of omni-channel retailing strategies particularly under Covid-19, our understanding on the impact of the current pandemic on consumers’ attitudes and behaviors toward omni-channel retailing is inadequate (Brandtner et al., 2021). Therefore, this concept paper applied systematic literature review to fill the gap. By integrating recent research about the impact of Covid-19 on consumer behavior, this study provided suggestions for future research topics and questions related to the impact of Covid-19 on apparel consumers’ channel selections and omni-channel shopping behaviors. 

Keywords: Omni-channel retailing, Covid-19 impact, apparel, consumers

How to Cite:

Chen, Y., McCracken, V. & Chi, T., (2022) “The Impact of COVID-19 on Apparel Consumers’ Channel Selections and Omni-Channel Shopping Behaviors”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 78(1). doi:



Published on
23 Sep 2022
Peer Reviewed