Understanding Ecommerce In 2020


Understanding ecommerce in 2020 centers around examining the rapid changes happening in the world of purchasing, due to COVID-19.

While ecommerce transactions have been growing and increasing the world over, the pandemic has opened up a world of possibility for what consumers can access online, while continuing to impact shopping habits worldwide,

When we think of “ecommerce” – when someone buys or sells something over the internet – it’s typical to picture mainstream ecommerce giants such as Amazon or Alibaba.

On these warehouse sites, consumers have access to a multitude of speciality items or household goods.

But up until recently, making a large luxury purchase, such as leather recliners made in usa, might have still warranted a trip to a brick-and-mortar store. In person purchases allow the human interaction with a sales person, and the opportunity to use senses other than eyesight to test out the product, like touch, or scent.

But with people working from home, and doing their best to avoid public places like shops or malls, it seems that the tide could be turning towards an even larger growth in ecommerce.

According to recent figures, eccomerce sales around the world, particularly in China and the U.S.A. are predicted to grow into the trillions in the 2020’s.

“In 2019, e-retail sales accounted for 14.1 percent of all retail sales worldwide. This figure is expected to reach 22 percent in 2023.”

And the number of buyers or consumers is expected to reach above 90 per cent soon.

“There are expected to be over 2B digital buyers in the world in 2020. By 2040, around 95% of all purchases are expected to be via ecommerce.”

One easy way to pinpoint the change in consumer behaviour towards online shopping is to look at the increase in sales on virtual shopping days.

In 2005, Cyber Monday, the Monday after American Thanksgiving, was created by retailers to encourage online shopping.

In 2017, the then 12 year old virtual shopping day saw sales exceed $6.5B for the first time since it’s conception.

These changes were reflected in a more immediate picture during the early stages of COVID-19, when shoppers around the world were “panic buying” or stocking up on a variety of necessary or essential items, in excess of what they needed.

Panic buying wasn’t limited to brick-and-mortar, and even big online marketplaces like Amazon were backlogged with orders for hand sanitizer, and masks.

Brands can use this pandemic as a crash-course in the fundamental principle of customer relations, in ecommerce specifically.

It is crucial that brands and suppliers are flexible to the changing industry, and are able to adapt, and react quickly to either a surge in sales or halt to production.

And according to experts, having a strong online presence and user friendly ecommerce shop will be critical to a long-term strategy in selling your products or services, as it looks like consumer’s propensity for online shopping won’t be slowing down after COVID-19 has passed.

“Not only does e-commerce have the potential to help your company through the crisis, but it can position it for faster recovery and prepare it for the post COVID-19 economic reality,” says  Jean-Philippe Senneville, director, Business Innovation and Technology