Is E-Commerce Growth an Un-Stoppable Train?!
This fascinating graph shows the timeline of retail sales growth in the United States since the year 2000. It also shows the relative percentage of that revenue, per year, which is attributable to e-commerce.
So for instance, going back to the year 2000, there was a total of $2.98 trillion or nearly $3 trillion in retail sales, but only 0.9 % was attributable to e-commerce.
20 years later, in the year 2020, the total volume of sales grew to $5.62 trillion, so nearly double in 20 years. But the interesting aspect to observe is the massive relative growth of e-commerce, which in 2020, accounted for 14% of all retail revenue.
So where the overall retail sales grew by not quite 100%, the percentage of e-commerce sales grew by 1400% or 14 times that of normal Retail sales growth!
This chart graphically shows the importance for all businesses of considering the e-commerce channel, whether they sell products or services.
Unfortunately, many businesses seem to view “bricks and mortar” retail versus e-commerce retail as a mutually exclusive option. You either do physical retail, OR you do e-commerce, but this is far from the truth.
A good example would be the gym industry during 2020 when the world experienced the beginnings of the COVID 19 pandemic. Certainly in Australia and New Zealand, and no doubt many other countries, most gyms suffered a lockdown and were simply not able to trade at all.
However, we saw many innovations where online and e-commerce modalities were used to continue to engage with the gym’s existing clientele and even to attract new clientele and provide avenues to pivot the business into virtual and online models.
However, now that certainly in Australia at least, there is considerable relaxation of the COVID-19 measures it’s interesting to see how many of these businesses are defaulting back to a pure bricks and mortar model, (and as well of course, many are embracing hybrid models of both!)
Even some major gym chains seem to make very little attempt even to really engage with members through online channels, apart perhaps from a boring monthly newsletter!
This is such a shame considering the massive opportunities that they have to:
- educate their clientele through online channels
- engage with their clientele and …
- most likely to sell other products and services be they virtual or face to face or through other forms of delivery.
If they made the effort to engage through the means of various online communication channels I’m pretty sure they could grow, and profit from additional use of e-commerce even in that industry!
What do you think?
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