As we enter the silly season and gear up for Christmas it’s a good time to reflect on the changing retail ecosystem we find ourselves in.
It was not that long ago that most of us did our shopping in bricks-and-mortar stores. Thanksgiving and post-Christmas sales were accompanied by news items of stampeding shoppers bursting into stores at before dawn as trepidatious employees opened the doors.
These days the rush is in people’s fingers, clicking and swiping during the year’s biggest online shopping days. Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the United States, Click Frenzy in Australia and Singles’ Day in China are driving massive retail dollars.
This year’s Singles’ Day alone saw a whopping AU$33 billion spent in just 24 hours¹. Of note to retailers looking to compete or take part in such events: 97% of the sales made in the first 30 seconds of the event were made via mobile².
In fact, PwC’s Total Retail Survey 2017 found that 35% of shoppers said their mobile or smartphone would become their main purchasing tool. When looking at shoppers’ daily and weekly use, the data is clear: mobile is where the future lies when it comes to online shopping.
Mobile shopping isn’t the only change in consumer preferences that retailers need to be aware of. While these mega shopping events have traditionally been regionally specific, coinciding with state-based holidays and seasonal changes, increasingly, the nature of online shopping is doing away with borders. In 2016, for example, the number of Australians shopping during Black Friday doubled from the previous year³.
To compete, retailers need to adapt to an online (mobile) retail marketplace where competition could be coming from any corner of the globe. Those that do will satisfy globally-focussed consumers and win their precious business.