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eCommerce is Good... But it’s Not Enough

January 20, 2014
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Is “eCommerce” really a thing? Some say not really. Or at least not for long.

Internet retail isn’t going anywhere — don’t get me wrong — it’s just that experts have begun looking at things different. As they do this, the word they’ve been looking for is more along the lines of “Omnichannel.” Shopping that encompasses all mediums — online, mobile, in-store — and combines them to provide one seamless experience for their consumers. According to Chris Fletcher, a research director at Gartner, “It’s happening and you have to deal with it… companies are just getting used to the idea that it’s all one experience.”

It has become very apparent to brick and mortar retailers that they need to adopt both traditional retail and eCommerce in order to stay current and not lose too much footing to internet commerce companies like Amazon. One such company is Macy’s, which has evolved to become (according to its own report) “an omnichannel retail organization operating stores and websites”.

A store can’t just decide to become an internet presence, however; a half-baked strategy will not accomplish what is needed. Specialists need to be employed and it must be ensured that technology is up to industry standards and multiple delivery methods are offered. A store may have an eCommerce platform, but if it’s inconvenient to use or shipping options are just not what you want, you’re going to go to Amazon.

Or eBay.

You’re allowed choices, I suppose.

Macy’s has been embracing their new role in the universe by mastering the art of tracking cookies, promoting their mobile app via a certain pop star that shall not be named, and of course using the effervescent QR codes. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, only 5.2 percent of 2012′s retail purchases in the US were made online. Doesn’t seem like much. It is worth mentioning, however, that surveys have shown that at roughly 80 percent of customers use the online platforms to look up pricing online, often while inside the actual store.

Consider, also, who is currently making the majority of purchases. People who grew up and learned their habits before the glorious age of a computer in every home. Give it another five or 10 years, then check out how those numbers have changed. Who’s doing more shopping than ever?

That’s right.

People like me. People who really like their pajamas.

Just sayin’.

Is your business involved in home delivery? Join us in Atlanta this April for Home Delivery World.

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