Published On: Wed, Jan 9th, 2019

How Ecommerce Will Change in 2019 and Beyond

The world economy is now dominated by the online giant also known as Amazon. There’s even a term for it, the “Amazon Effect.” According to Tech Target, the Amazon effect refers to the evolution and disruption of the online and offline retail outlets due to the virtual monopoly of Amazon’s online shopping megastore. It acknowledges the way Amazon’s success has derailed retail operations and customer expectations. As of mid-2018, Amazon accounted for half of U.S. ecommerce sales as well as 5 percent all sales.

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Logistical Genius

Amazon’s dominance is well-earned, and its logistical setup is a marvel. Nearly any consumer good can be delivered to your front porch within days, if not hours. Other ecommerce players are under constant pressure to deliver as fast and well as Amazon. Consumers are constantly revising their standards for faster delivery. To meet this constraint, ecommerce companies rely on courier software so they can match or exceed Amazon’s gazelle speed.

Mobile-First Wave Rides into the New Year

Ecommerce providers have to think of mobile-users first in 2019, not just on par with desktop users. Salesforce has predicted that by this year’s holiday season, the largest share of ecommerce visits will occur via smartphone.

Amazon has expanded its capability in part due to the rise of artificial intelligence and machine learning, which drives Amazon’s Alexa smart speaker as well as and the cash cow Amazon Web Services that sells AI cloud computing to customers. Other ecommerce sites are also unlocking the power of AI.

The online web design firm 7 Elements offers this advice, “Focus heavily on user-friendliness, SEO optimization and mobile responsiveness. Google has indicated that “mobile responsiveness” is a ranking factor.”

Even merchants on a budget can often afford AI chatbots to provide basic customer information and utilize AI-based marketing strategies.

Online Grocery Wars

Amazon’s $13.7 billion takeover of Whole Foods launched the online giant’s foray into the grocery chain jungle. A year later, fewer Amazon Prime subscribers are using Amazon’s online grocery offering.

Also, online grocery shoppers spend a fraction of what they do in a physical store, where impulse buying more than doubles their average bill compared to online shopping. Still, with subscription meal boxes (Blue Apron, Fresh) and hungry competitors (Instacart), Amazon has a run for its money in this category.

Have a Plan for How Amazon May Try to Take Over Your Space

With Amazon growing by leaps and bounds, it’s important to understand the impact on your online or offline retail enterprise. Whatever you can do to stay relevant and competitive could save you from being buried in the avalanche of the “Amazon Impact.”

Author: Jacob Maslow

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