Some retail merchants couldn’t wait to enter the eCommerce marketplace. Others were leary and refrained from diving in, despite all the predictions of eCommerce growth. While those predictions were bound to come true eventually, the pandemic of 2020 has seen those predictions come to fruition. Whether you’ve just been dabbling in online retail or are finally ready to transition to the eCommerce marketplace, the time is now. Still not convinced? Once you check out recent statistics and consider the benefits, you’ll probably change your mind.
According to Statista, global eCommerce sales are expected to increase 246.15% by 2021. That’s up from 1.3 trillion in 2014 to 4.5 trillion in 2021. Ecommerce sales soared when the pandemic began, increasing by 44.5 % compared to second-quarter sales in 2019. While they have declined somewhat with the loosening of quarantine restrictions, they are still expected to show a 20% increase by the year’s end.
2020 also saw the decline of many brick and mortar stores. While the pandemic played a part in this, most business analysts claim it simply accelerated what was going to happen anyway. Many of the large chain stores were already opting to reduce the number of physical locations they have in favor of investing in their eCommerce growth.
Who is Shopping Online and Why?
A 2017 report from Statista showed the breakdown of online shoppers by generation.
- 67 percent of millennials prefer to shop online.
- 56 percent of gen-Xers prefer to shop online.
- 41 percent of baby boomers prefer online shopping.
- 28 percent of seniors prefer online shopping.
These numbers reflect online shopping habits before the pandemic. No doubt they’ve increased since then. Now that we know who is shopping online, let’s look at some of the reasons why.
- 24/7 shopping- Online retailers are always open.
- Saves money – allowing the consumer to compare products and prices to find the best deals.
- Convenience – No crowds, traffic, parking lots, or long check-out lines to deal with.
- Availability – Those hard to find items can be quicker and easier online.
- Free shipping – some retailers offer a single annual fee for shipping and others offer it on orders totaling a specific amount.
It is important to note that in addition to making online purchases, online browsing and research are often a prerequisite to making an in-store purchase. This eliminates the time spent going from store to store to do comparison shopping. It also allows shoppers to read reviews about the product they’re considering and those reviews often influence their purchases. All of this makes building a strong online presence and investing in eCommerce growth a wise business decision.
Making the Transition
To successfully enter the eCommerce marketplace involves developing a strategy, building or upgrading your website, and promoting your business on social media. It is a big undertaking in both time and money but one that will pay off if done properly. There are various factors to consider such as identifying your online audience. With eCommerce growth, you will reach a much broader audience whose needs may be different than those who shop your brick and mortar stores. Your competition will also be larger so it’s important to take steps to make your business stand out in the crowd. Unless you already have digital marketing experience, it is often best to hire a professional agency to kickstart your eCommerce growth.
Retail Funding Solutions from CapFlow
Ready to invest in eCommerce growth but concerned about the upfront cost? At CapFlow Funding Group, we understand that this kind of investment can be difficult to make without depleting your existing working capital. We offer merchant cash advances and invoice factoring and are dedicated to providing the short-term working capital you need to promote eCommerce growth.and remain competitive.
Our merchant cash advances can be a great option for retailers ready to dive into the online marketplace and for B2B businesses invoice factoring can be the perfect solution. We also work with trusted partners to provide other alternative financing options that may be better suited to our clients’ business needs. We service many different industries with a variety of funding needs. Our goal is to find the best funding solution for your business. Contact us today and find out how a merchant cash advance or invoice factoring can fuel your eCommerce growth.