Category Archives: E-commerce

Ecommerce Hits Milestone

Digital commerce, fueled by growth in mobile purchasing, hit a huge milestone last year.  In 2012, B2C ecommerce spending totaled on $1 trillion globally.  New research has come available that shows it’s not even close to slowing down.

shutterstock_111037535● From 2011 to 2012, global ecommerce grew 21% to reach $1.2 trillion

● By 2016, ecommerce is projected to hit $1.5 trillion worldwide

● In North America, digital spending grew 14% to nearly $365 billion.  Next year it is expected to expand to over $400 billion

● The number of digital buyers in the US is expected to grow from 150 million last year to 175 million in 2016

● China is expected to see the greatest growth.  Ecommerce is projected 65% from 2012 to 2013 and the number of digital customers will rise by nearly 25%

What Does This Mean To You?

What does your ecommerce strategy look like?
Digital purchasing, mcommerce in particular, is rapidly changing and growing. Having a strategy is important, but making sure it’s scalable is equally important.  Things like mobile point of sale will have a dramatic affect on how your business operates.  The international adoption of digital purchasing may open new markets for your business as well.  While we can’t predict the changes that may occur, being nimble and being able to quickly pivot is something that could give your company a competitive advantage in the future. For more information on how to capitalize on ecommerce growth,  please contact your Sun Sentinel representative or:
Julie Otto
Research Manager

Source: Emarketer


Creating A Better Ecommerce Experience

Earlier this week, we posted research on how digital drove holiday sales.  As we move forward into 2013, many businesses are planning to make their ecommerce platforms more robust.  This information can keep you digitally competitive this year.

shutterstock_111037535• Over one-third of retailers worldwide plan to add How-To information or tutorials to their sites in 2013

• Over 30% are adding online videos

• 28% will be adding blog posts to their ecommerce solutions this year

• More than a quarter of global businesses will incorporate articles and press releases

• 20% are including a twitter feed to their buying platforms

What Does This Mean To You?

When you keep visitors engaged, they spend more time on your site.
Anytime you can keep visitors on your site longer, you greatly increase
the chance they will buy something from you.
Isn’t the reason you have an ecommerce solution is to make more revenue?
Video’s, tutorials, blogs posts, articles and social media are great
tools to help your business more effectively engage customers and create
a better user experience. Since it’s your site, you can control the
content. Leverage the content to put your store and the products you
sell in the best possible light. For more information on how to direct
more potential buyers to your site, please contact your Sun Sentinel representative or:
Julie Otto
Advertising Marketing Manager

Source: eMarketer; SU Systems

Consumers Clicking For Cyber Monday Deals

Cyber Monday originated before high speed digital access was something that was available in most homes.  It was a way to secure online shopping from people who had just gotten back to work after the long Thanksgiving weekend.  Even though high speed connections are the norm, consumers still see Cyber Monday as a great time to shop online retailers and get deals.

• 45% of consumers plan to shop on Cyber Monday

• Over 40% shop on Cyber Monday because stores usually offer free shipping

• Four in 10 purchase online on Cyber Monday because they feel they will get the best online deals that day

• 37% say it lets them avoid shopping with Thanksgiving crowds

• One in five shop then in order not to waste their Thanksgiving weekend shopping

What Does This Mean To You?

Ecommerce is going to play a huge part of holiday spending this year.  Over $95 billion of holiday spending will come through online channels.  Consumers value the convenience that online shopping provides.
When was the last time you looked at your ecommerce solution?
Have you checked out the competitions online checkout functions?
Consumers are comparison shopping – not just for the best deals, but also who is the easiest to  do business with.  If your solution is clunky or not intuitive, count on a high rate of shopping cart abandonment.  Shopping cart abandonment is something else you should have tactics in place for.  For more information on how to maximize online shopping dollars this holiday season, please contact your Sun Sentinel representative or:
Julie Otto
Advertising Marketing Manager

Online Shopping To Drive Holiday Sales

This week, many stores will be going into full holiday mode.  But recently, we’ve posted information showing that upwards of 40% of consumers have already started making holiday purchases.  It’s important to connect with these shoppers as early as possible because consumer sentiment is not as strong as in prior years.  One of the latest pieces of research to come out is how strong online shopping looks to be this holiday season.

• Holiday retail sales are projected to increase by 4% according to the National Retail Federation.  That’s a total of over $585 billion

• Actual holiday sales grew last year by 5.6%

• Online holiday sales are expected to reach $96 billion – 16% of total holiday sales will come from ecommerce

• Year over year, online shopping is projected to increase by 15% over last year

What Does This Mean To You?

More and more consumers are will be shopping online.  Even more will be researching products and comparing prices. Online shopping offers consumers a convenient way to get through the holidays.  It puts them in control of the buying experience and they don’t have to deal with crowded stores.  To get the most out of your e-holiday efforts, make sure your checkout process is quick and easy. Also compare your shipping costs against your competitors – because that’s what consumers are doing. Even if you don’t offer online shopping, you can benefit from digital solutions.  Product descriptions are seen as a big benefit and a tool for shoppers.  You can offer online coupons to bring shoppers into your location. For more information on how you can leverage digital to increase your holiday results, please contact your Sun Sentinel representative or:
Julie Otto
Advertising Marketing Manager

Source: National Retail Federation;

Attracting High End Shoppers

Yesterday, we talked about the value of a loyalty program in engaging the wealthy shopper.  Today, we’ll look at what digital features experts think attract affluent customers.  A new report chronicled the functions that luxury advertisers plan on increasing use of this year. This information can help you gain the attention of upper end shoppers and get results.

• Nearly 70% of luxury brands plan on using more video and mobile to reach affluent shoppers

• Nearly half will employ social media

• 45% will deploy rich media solutions

• Nearly 30% are going to be increasing their investment in search

• One in six will be moving more assets to standard online display positions

 What Does This Mean To You?

In yesterday’s post, we showed you the amount of adults who have mobile devices.  High income consumers are very tech savvy.
Nationally, among consumers with Household incomes of $75,000+:

• Nearly two-thirds are social networkers

• Over 30% accessed a social network from their mobile device in the past month

• 87% shopped online in the past year – that’s nearly 40% higher than the general public

• They are also 42% more likely to make an online purchase

• Nearly one in four read or contributed to a blog

• Four in 10 viewed video clips online

• Over 70% are texters

There are many digital devices that affluent shoppers rely on.  For more information on using them to create awareness and visibility for your business, please contact your Sun Sentinel representative or:
Julie Otto
Advertising Marketing Manager

Source: Martini Media; Digiday; The 2012 Scarborough Multi-Market Report, Release 1

Building Loyalty With Affluent Shoppers

Upper end shoppers are a highly sought after commodity.  They have the resources to not only make large purchases, they are often more easily financed and value quality service. Mobile is a great way to engage affluent shoppers and create awareness of everything you have to offer.  New information is available that tells us not only how prevalent mobile devices are with high end shoppers but what they are looking for in mobile apps.

Over half of adults with incomes of $75,000 – $100,000 own smart phones and over 20% own
a tablet.  Smart phone ownership is nearly 10%
than the general population and tablet ownership
is 19% higher

• Six in 10 adults with incomes of $100,000+ are smart phone owners and 27% have tablets. These extremely affluent shoppers are 25% more likely to own a smart phone and over 40% more likely to be tablet owners

• 46% of adults with household incomes of $150,000 or higher are looking for loyalty program features from the mobile apps they download.  45% want early access to sales.

• Nearly 40% want exclusive product updates or offers for those who downloaded the app

• 36% are interested in product sneak peaks, high quality video and VIP privileges

• Over 30% want to be able to make mobile purchases and easy access to customer service

• Other things that affluent shoppers are looking for are customization based on personal preferences, peer recommendations and exclusive information

 What Does This Mean To You?

The keys to connecting with the high dollar consumer start with making them feel privileged.  They want to be able see, buy and know about products and sales before anyone else.  They also want services regular customers can’t get.  These are the same things that consumers who are more likely to be in the average income range would also appreciate.  They are also things that an overall loyalty program can achieve.  Loyalty programs also give you the ability to communicate directly with customers – and because they signed up for the program, it’s valued content to them.  You can also segment your offers with loyalty programs.  This plays into the customization that consumers are looking for. Offers that are more targeted towards the needs of consumers deliver better results. For more information on how you can develop customer loyalty and then influence additional sales,  please contact your Sun Sentinel representative or:
Julie Otto
Advertising Marketing Manager

Source: emarketer; Luxury Institute and Plastic Mobile; comScore

The Countdown Has Begun

The last thing I ever want to do is scare people, but this  at the very least may shock you.

Christmas is now 90 days away

It may seem like it’s still summer but Black Friday is less than 2 months from now.  The kids just went back to school and in many parts of the country, it’s still relatively warm.
But take a look at the calendar – we are 90 days from the big day.
The first of many holiday spending reports has been released and they show
that ecommerce will still be a major factor in the ways consumers spend during the holidays.

• Retail ecommerce spending during the holiday season is expected to reach nearly $54.5 billion dollars

• Year over year, holiday ecommerce is projected to increase nearly 17%

• In 2012, holiday season spending is expected to make up nearly 25% of the total ecommerce spending

• While holiday season ecommerce is expected to jump almost 17%, total ecommerce for the entire year is expected to increase by 15%

What Does This Mean To You?

Whether we like it or not, it’s never to early to plan how your organization is going to handle the holidays.  From staffing to marketing, the holidays can be challenging but there are many digital opportunities that can ease holiday frustrations.
Last year, mobile had a huge effect on consumer activity and there is no doubt that this year it’s impact will be even bigger. Social media has also changed the way consumers find what to buy and where to find it – that will probably not change as well.  This year, geo-location activities and SMS/text could increase in importance with shoppers.  Many businesses are looking at how “showrooming” will affect them and how loyalty programs may be a solution.
We will be regularly posting on the latest research to come out regarding holiday shopping trends and consumer activity.
Take this opportunity to prepare your staff for the holidays.
Have you planned for employee vacations and any staffing issues?
Have you updated your staff contact list to include cell phone, email, Facebook and Twitter contact information?
Are you planning to have any staff training sessions on your mobile and web capabilities?
Have you thought about developing a company holiday blog or Facebook page to keep your employees  up to date your back-end holiday plans?

Lots of companies, especially small and medium sized ones, put all their effort into the marketing aspect of the holidays, but don’t plan for their organizational needs.  The best way to make sure you have a successful holiday season is to plan ahead for all aspects of your business.  For more information on how to make this holiday season your most profitable, please contact your Sun Sentinel representative or:
Julie Otto
Advertising Marketing Manager

Source: eMarketer