In 2016, a survey showed that for the first time in U.S. history, consumers were purchasing more online than they were at traditional stores. It’s hardly a surprise – e-commerce has broken retailing records every year since its inception. As the online market continues to expand, and its place in the global economy grows with it, we decided to take a moment and discuss the exciting ways in which e-commerce has influenced business applications worldwide.
Retail and Wholesale:
It’s hard to argue the huge impact e-commerce has had on the retail industry. In 2015, Alibaba, a Chinese e-retail giant, saw a record $14.3 billion in sales on their annual ‘Singles Day’ event. What’s even more curious about that number is that 71% of purchases were done through a mobile device of some kind. Simply, e-commerce has opened up an entirely new way for people to shop. Businesses now have a larger outreach, lower startup costs, and no business middlemen, thus simplifying the retail process for businesses and consumers alike.
An interesting side consequence of the e-commerce revolution is its value for marketing data. Businesses now have an easy way to track what gets purchased, when it gets purchased, and who it gets purchased by. This data creates the perfect marketing strategy for any online company. A clear example of this concept is Amazon’s “Customers who bought this item also bought…” feature. Amazon uses customer data to accurately identify what products people will want based on their past purchasing history. This creative use of data has opened up an entirely new marketing landscape. Customer data is now the core from which online businesses all over the world base their marketing and localization strategies.
To a large extent, e-commerce practices have helped to shape the global financial sector. Since the majority of business transactions are completed using internet financial services, banks and other financial pillars have had to adopt a more progressive approach to how it utilizes the internet. e-commerce has ultimately led to a creation of a eTransaction services and internet banking. These services are significant because as of 2016 it was reported that nearly 60% of China’s 700 million internet users used online banking to purchase e-commerce items — a growth of 16% from the previous year. This number is expected to increase indefinitely as more mobile devices become more integrated in everyday life.
e-commerce has truly been an important milestone for global businesses. The e-commerce concept has managed to transform local markets across the world to create one, interconnected, global marketplace. As e-commerce continues to boom, now more than ever, localization strategy is important for all those who wish to take advantage during this golden age of commerce.
Written by Patrick Keefe, Technical Writer at CSOFT International