The weekend after Thanksgiving saw a 34% increase in e-commerce transactions from 2012. The following weekend was even better with ComScore measuring a 71% jump in those transactions. On the other hand, brick-and-mortar stores have seen sales decline. ShopperTrak, which measures retail shopping, found that during the first week of December 2013, in-store retail sales fell 2.9% and traffic plunged 21.6%. In the second week, sales declined almost 0.8% from the same week in 2012, while store traffic dropped 19.9 percent. Analysts tracking holiday sales say online sales accounted for nearly 40 percent of all spending in 2013, well ahead of expectations.
What does this mean for smart manufacturers, distributors and retailers? They need to be finding ways to get their products online. For most businesses, this means investing in an e-commerce platform. But things aren't as simple as they seem. Setting up a functional, secure and good-looking website is hard enough. But e-commerce also means businesses need to think about fulfillment services which can present all kinds of headaches - working with multiple courier companies, delays resulting in unhappy customers, returns, refunds - in other words a whole new ball game most businesses are not equipped and would rather not deal with.
While overall online sales figures are growing rapidly, most online stores are not having much success. Why is this so? There is one Godzilla-sized reason - Amazon. According to Internet Retailer, the Amazonian giant sells more online than its next 12 biggest competitors combined, including big names like Staples, Target and Wal-Mart! The millions of other businesses hoping to muscle in on the online retail boom are left to fight over scraps. A testament to Amazon's global e-commerce domination is that even in Singapore, which is literally on the other side of the world from Amazon's US-based fulfillment centers, Amazon is the number 1 e-tailer, commanding a 23% market share.
The key to riding this wave is clear. You have to leverage on Amazon. Not many people understand Amazon's business model - that it is not a single retail entity like Wal-Mart, but a hybrid of an online store and a Google like search engine platform.
This is where Super Havens comes in. With a network of several hundred members who specialize in selling professionally on Amazon, we can help manufacturers and distributors tap into the power of the Amazon river. Contact us to explore how your brand and products can grow their online retail presence internationally in the US, Canada and the 27 countries of the EU with minimal risk and time while protecting your brand reputation. (This paragraph is a pitch I used at my first trade show to great effect last week! I had a great time working the trade show thanks to one of Jim Cockrum's mastermind members, Ryan Reger, who called to help with some advice and the book How to be a "Trade Show No Show" by Jim Peterson and Jim Cockrum which I read 3 times. The book costs $24.97, but is included in the Proven Amazon Course if you have that!)