Despite the gloomy economic climate, E-commerce firms are experiencing a significant acceleration in growth from 20 per cent in May 2012 to 46 per cent in 2013. Year on Year performance has also increased from 20 per cent in 2012 to 30 percent till June 2013.
Customer Retention & Loyalty
Customers are "OUT" almost as instantly as they were "IN". With increase in new online customers projected at 4 million in 2013, e-commerce growth is being driven by existing customers. Online retailers are focusing on customer retention to maintain the growth momentum and remain competitive.
Mobile & Tablets
Recent figures reveal 2013 Q1 in-store sales at 3.2 per cent while online sales experienced a 20 per cent growth. Mobile e-commerce grew at an impressive rate of 31 per cent during the quarter to reach $8.75 billion. The average order value by device has also shown impressive growth in 2013 with smart phones dominating ($ 107) and tablets ($98.59) marginally behind traditional desktops and Laptops ($99.1). Mobile commerce has also encouraged "show-rooming" creating a huge challenge for traditional retailers competing on margins.
Amazon and Google are continuing to contribute significantly to the growth of online retailers. Although, Amazon's third party seller program has seen a deceleration it still contributes higher than organic growth for online retailers. However, Google has outperformed Amazon with the Google shopping program (formerly called Google product search). Google product listing ads (part of the Google shopping program) have posted 39 per cent year on year growth.
As boundaries between offline and online blurring retailers are offering virtual shopping experiences to their customers to keep them engaged and to push the purchase. Traditional stores are also being converted to fulfillment centers with new websites and mobile enhancements to build the personal rapport with the consumer. Customer reviews and 360 degree product views are making consumers more comfortable about shopping online.
Online retailers are offering in store pick up and returns and on the other hand engaging location based courier networks with one hour or less delivery time to attract and retain customers.
Online retailers have been aggressively pursuing dynamic pricing strategies although there being a need to balance the conflict between online and offline retail. Show-rooming for example creates a huge challenge for traditional retailers where prices may differ significantly between online and offline.
Image based search
From traditional text based search (for example a search for a blue T shirt throws up a huge selection of results) which may not be consistent or accurate in terms of search result to image based search help consumers post an image to search for identical or similar products from the entire database giving them exactly what they need.
Google with advertising and search dominance and Facebook with social media dominance have caught the attention of retailers. Shopping is a social experience and bridging the gap between online and offline and innovating shopping experience through social shopping is going to be a game changer.
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Market Equations helps a UK based online retailer leverage predictive analytics to accurately forecast demand across multiple DC's globally enabling them reduce inventory costs, improve customer service and retention levels and increase sales by over 200% by reducing stock outs.Read More
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Market Equations India helped a leading multi brand E-Commerce firm extract valuable insights from their large customer database and understand the varying sales trends, customer behavior, product affinity, market baskets to...Read More
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