How the Pandemic Changed the 2021 Holiday Shopping Season | Economy

There was a time when online shopping was an inexpensive and effective way to find obscure merchandise and avoid a trip to the store. Then the coronavirus struck and turned the web into a way for homebound consumers to purchase life’s necessities.

E-commerce became a lifeline rather than a luxury and never more so than during the 2021 holidays. But as online shopping became ubiquitous, some of its earlier benefits disappeared, chief among them lower prices.

An analysis of online shopping trends during the 2021 Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday spending season by Adobe Digital Insights released Wednesday found that inflation has caught up with the web, as prices rose 3.5% in November from a year earlier and 3.1% annually in December. That was driven by demand, as consumers spent $204.5 billion during the 2021 holiday season, up 8.6% year over year.

Cartoons on the Coronavirus

“Everyone was in front of

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Little India, already struggling before the pandemic, is at a crossroads

Mala Malani, owner of Sona Chaandi, adjusts a sari on a mannequin at her department store in the Little India shopping district in Artesia. (Jason Armond/Los Angeles Times)

Seema Choudhary needed eight traditional Indian outfits for her daughter’s dance troupe.

A few years ago, she might have driven the roughly 25 miles to Little India from her home in Irvine.

This time, she ordered from a supplier more than 8,500 miles away in Gujarat, which offered lower prices and shipped the skirts, scarves and embroidered tops to her door.

Like many Indian Americans in Southern California, Choudhary has cut back on visiting Little India in Artesia, in favor of online shopping and Indian grocery stores closer to home.

She still goes once a month for items like sandalwood incense and mango wood candle holders that she can’t get in Orange County.

But she and many in her 1,500-member OC Indian

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Online shopping scams flourish on social media during pandemic

A shift toward online shopping during COVID-19, global supply chain crisis, and a resurging economy have all created a recipe for a breakneck holiday shopping season – one where online shopping fraud poses a tremendous risk to consumers.

Online purchase scams have skyrocketed during the pandemic, and social media ads play a key role in the mushrooming problem, a new Better Business Bureau study finds.

Kelvin Collins is president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving the Fall Line Corridor.

The in-depth investigative study – Theft on a Massive Scale: Online Shopping Fraud and the Role of Social Media – finds the pandemic, along with lax social commerce shopping platforms, has opened the door for scammers in China to steal from desperate online shoppers. Read the full study at www.BBB.org.

Online shopping fraud has been growing for several years, but according to BBB research, it dramatically increased during the

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CT Spas see customers return, along with effects of pandemic skin neglect

The skincare and spa industry was greatly impacted by the pandemic as people stopped going to get treatments. Now, Connecticut spa owners say people are seeing the effects that forgoing regular treatment resulted in. At the end of 2021, that has served as a catalyst for bringing customers back to the spas in big numbers. 

“Taking care of your skin contributes to your health, wellness and youthfulness,” said Mary Donahue, director of wellness for THE WELL at Mayflower Inn, Auberge Resorts Collection in Washington. 

The Well is a part of the Mayflower Inn & Spa, Auberge Resorts Collection, located in Washington, Conn. It offers a variety of wellness treatments.

Murphy O’Brien / Courtesy of The Mayflower Inn & Spa, Auberge Resorts Collection

John Breslin, regional director for spa operations for Mandara Spa at Mohegan Sun, noted that COVID restrictions have changed some of the ways things are being

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