COVID Consumer Snapshot September - rectangle

Consumer Sentiment Snapshot Key Charts: September

As the days grow shorter and the summer of 2020 draws to an end, consumer sentiment and behavior remain fairly consistent, as they have since May, despite fluctuations in the rate of new COVID-19 cases as a percentage of a country’s first-observed peak—including a resurgence of cases in the US in June and July and now a resurgence of cases in France in August and September. Whether the sharply increasing new case numbers in France and continued unpredictable numbers in the US will significantly alter consumer sentiment in the next month or two remains uncertain. However, we see that levels of concern are substantially lower in France when compared with the US despite the resurgence of the coronavirus there.

As we move into the fall, parents and students in both countries are expressing concern over the quality of education that children will receive during the pandemic, as well as mixed preferences with regard to at-home versus in-school education formats. That said, the majority of parents in our surveys indicate that they are able to educate their children through their preferred format. With the US presidential election nearing in November, we see strong signs that the pandemic will be an influential matter for many voters. Look for our upcoming feature article on consumer sentiment related the US election in late October.

About the Research

BCG’s COVID-19 Consumer Sentiment Snapshot series is based on data drawn from an online survey of consumers that has been conducted regularly since early March 2020 across multiple countries worldwide. Each Snapshot highlights a selection of insights from a comprehensive ongoing study that BCG provides to clients. The survey is produced by the authors, who are members of BCG’s Center for Customer Insight (CCI), in partnership with coding and sampling provider Dynata, the world’s largest first-party data and insights platform. The goal of the research is to provide our clients and businesses around the world with periodic barometer readings of COVID-19-related consumer sentiment and actual and anticipated consumer behavior and spending to inform critical crisis triage activities, as well as rebound planning and decision making. A team composed of BCG consultants and experts from CCI completes the survey analytics.

Legal Context

The situation surrounding COVID-19 is dynamic and rapidly evolving, on a daily basis. This COVID-19 research is not intended to: (i) constitute medical or safety advice, nor be a substitute for the same; nor (ii) be seen as a formal endorsement or recommendation of a particular response. As such you are advised to make your own assessment as to the appropriate course of action to take.


We would like to thank our key contributors for this article:

  • Global and US consumer sentiment team: Greg McRoskey, Dan Metzel, Andrea Mendoza, Madeleine Macks, Ariel Hudes, Christian Ueland, Lolly Buenaventura, Thomas Uhler, and Ian Irungu
We appreciate the generous support that the following people have provided in producing COVID-19 research and the associated article series:
  • Practice leadership: Rohan Sajdeh, Jean-Manuel Izaret, Niki Lang, Nimisha Jain, Aparna Bharadwaj, and Stephane Cairole
  • Knowledge team: Kelsey Almaguer, Elena Loridas, Kosmo Karantonis, Daniel Wang, and Deepti Tyagi
We also thank BCG’s Center for Customer Insight (CCI) team globally, Scott Wallace, and Dynata for their support and input into this article.

About BCG’s Center for Customer Insight

The Boston Consulting Group’s Center for Customer Insight (CCI) applies a unique, integrated approach that combines quantitative and qualitative consumer research with a deep understanding of business strategy and competitive dynamics. The center works closely with BCG’s various practices to translate its insights into actionable strategies that lead to tangible economic impact for our clients. In the course of its work, the center has amassed a rich set of proprietary data on consumers from around the world, in both emerging and developed markets. The CCI is sponsored by BCG’s Marketing & Sales and Global Advantage practices. For more information, please visit

About Dynata

Dynata is the world’s largest first-party data and insights platform. With a reach that encompasses 62 million consumers and business professionals globally, and an extensive library of individual profile attributes collected through surveys, Dynata is the cornerstone for precise, trustworthy quality data. The company has built innovative data services and solutions around its robust first-party data offering to bring the voice of the customer to the entire marketing continuum—from strategy, innovation, and branding to advertising, measurement, and optimization. Dynata serves nearly 6,000 market research, media and advertising agencies, publishers, consulting and investment firms and corporate customers in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific. Learn more at

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Consumer Sentiment Snapshot Key Charts: September