It remains surprising that a good number of retailers out there consider the Internet as a bubble that millennials will get over in due time. This will be their undoing. Brick and mortar stores have been in operation for close to a century. Changes began to be witnessed within the past few decades. Today, e-commerce is not an additional revenue stream model that you can afford to deprioritize. Online shopping has become a fundamental part of the retail market which accounts for a significant share of the retail industry.
Why online shopping is growing
Faster growth than market competition
Statistics released by the National Retail Federation reveal their sales predictions for 2017. The growth rate estimates arrange from 3.7 to just about 4.2 percent. This covers restaurants, gas stations, cars and restaurant sales. Today this prediction is highly consistent with estimates arrived at by industry experts, with the main area of focus being e-commerce growth.
The online retail space is expected to grow between 8 and 12 percent. Future projections show that it will grow to over $400 billion by the end of this year. On the other hand, Brick and mortar stores will grow a partly 2.8 percent.
The majority share in retail sales can be attributed to brick-and-mortar stores. This is why the industry growth rates today are very low. Most brands expect their online sales to thrive even if they currently account for a small percentage of their overall revenues.
Shopping online is not limited to millennials
The business world tends to associate tech-savvy young people with technology. Some brands might feel that their product lines are more suited for the older conservative markets and shy away for digressing online. Interestingly, the number of people who fit this criterion of the Internet-absent individuals keep shrinking every day.
Going by industry data in the United States, we do see that online shopping cuts across all age brackets. This means once you limit your online shopping to target a particular demography, you lose out on your selling potential.
The online marketplace changing consumer behaviors
A major challenge facing retailers ever since the rise of e-commerce is the highly popular online marketplaces. Before the internet was invented, customers preferred looking for suitable items that would offer the best price for their products. This would mean having to shop around. For instance, a customer would have to visit a home depot, hardware, and a supermarket before deciding on buying a grill.
The Internet marketplaces involve simply making a search on the search engines where everything gets displayed. You do not have to visit several stores when making comparisons. All this can be done from the comfort of your home. Through the retailer websites, you can check out the reviews, compare prices, examine models and make your purchase without having to drive there physically. The purchased item will be delivered to your residence at a small shipping fee.
The modern malls are changing
The hardest hit institutions today are the malls. More of this mega retail centers are shutting down. To survive in the competitive retail climate, managers are forced to paying greater attention to customer needs, focusing on experiences rather than store options. More malls today have restaurants, VR experiences, outdoor stores and movie theaters.