eCommerce spending coronavirus featured mage

eCommerce spending going through the roof due to the coronavirus

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Social distancing and the difficulty people are facing in getting to physical stores mean that some eCommerce categories are experiencing extraordinary demand – we explain how brands can stand out from the crowd.

With so many people around the world social distancing, working from home, unable to visit physical stores regularly and spending so much time in front of their screens, it’s hardly surprising that certain eCommerce categories are experiencing such rapid growth.

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The popularity of eCommerce categories like FMCG and electronics has spiked across the world as a result of COVID-19 and confinement – brands must grasp their opportunity now – Image source: Nielsen

eCommerce was already expected to account for 22 percent of all sales by 2023[1], but eRetailers – and, in particular, online grocers – are now dealing with unprecedented online traffic and demand.

Grocery delivery industry leader Instacart has seen a 218 percent increase in average daily downloads compared to the previous month – and Walmart Grocery and Shipt 160 percent and 124 percent increases, respectively.[2]

While bearing the seriousness of the global situation very much in mind, brands must nevertheless grasp this golden opportunity to put themselves in front of online shoppers that have the sole aim of buying groceries as quickly and easily as possible.

So, what are some of the ways that they can do that? We’ve outlined a few below.

Retail Digital Media – putting your products directly in front of online shoppers

Being Above-the-Fold – that is, very apparent in the portion of a web or mobile page that is immediately visible in a browser window when the page or app first loads – is incredibly important when it comes to standing out on the digital shelf. 64 percent of clicks are on the first three items listed in response to a search query on a retail site.[3]

Retail Digital Media (RDM) – which, in a nutshell, is advertising on eRetailer sites like Amazon or Walmart – is the perfect way to put your product front-and-centre on eRetailer sites and leap out at online shoppers at the point in their journey when they are most likely to buy. 

Over 21 percent of people are more likely to buy a product after seeing RDM on an eRetailer website like Amazon.

And we also know that basket sizes grow by 25 percent when online shoppers are exposed to RDM on retailer websites.[4]

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Retail Digital Media is vital for driving sales on eRetailer sites like Amazon or – Image source: eBusiness Institute

Invest in Retail Search to make your products visible

Retail Search is the means by which online shoppers search for products on eRetailer sites. 

51 percent of online shoppers now choose Amazon and its retail search function as the first tool they use to research products compared with the 16 percent that would choose Google as their first option. So, it’s little wonder that brands are beginning to invest as much in Retail Search as they do Google.[5]

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It’s hugely important that online shoppers are able to find your products on eRetailer sites like Amazon or Walmart – Retail Search is key to this – Image source: eBusiness Institute

Like Google search, Retail Search offers brands both organic and paid options. In the short-term – and to stand out at a time when so many people are shopping online – brands might consider giving their products with low rankings on Amazon or similar a significant boost by investing in sponsored ads.

In the longer-term, brands should optimise their product listings through investment in high-quality Product eContent, such as exact product titles and great product descriptions.

Product eContent influences buying decisions

If an online shopper can’t see, smell or feel your product on the online shelf in the way that they can in a physical store, how can a brand make sure its product stands out? Especially at an extraordinary time like this when so many brands are clamoring for attention?   

Product eContent is the answer. And what is Product eContent? It’s content like expertly written product descriptions, engaging videos and Ratings & Reviews that enhance the online shopping experience and help influence consumers’ buying decisions.

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This Product eContent uses powerful imagery and gives online shoppers all the information they need in order to make a purchasing decision – Image source: Amazon

Does your brand have the internal capability to deliver what shoppers need?

Some brands were well-prepared for a crisis like the one the world is facing now. 

They have been able to ensure that their products – products that consumers have felt in great need of – have been highly visible on the digital shelf at a time when so many people can’t go to find and buy them in-store.

Has your brand been ready? Have you had everything you needed in place to put your products in consumers’ eyelines and reassure them? Have you experienced internal capability gaps that have held you back at this extraordinary time?

Do your teams have the skills needed to Master Online Retailing?

The popularity of online shopping – already rapidly on the rise before COVID-19 – has understandably sky-rocketed during the global lockdown. 

Short-term consumer habits developed by huge numbers of new online shoppers during the crisis will solidify and become long-term. They will have realised how easy and convenient it is to shop this way – and they won’t turn back. 

Can your organisation meet the growing expectations of online shoppers? Or will you be left behind? 

We’ve launched our highly practical and action-focused Mastering Online Retailing Capability Building webinar series to make sure that your organisation and its teams are in a position to maximise eCommerce growth and thrive during the next decade. 

Mastering Online Retailing will enable your organisation to rapidly update its eCommerce capabilities, leverage proven tools for setting short & long-term strategies, and – ultimately – achieve online sales goals.

Contact us if you’d like to learn more about Mastering Online Retailing or any other of our H.O.W. Capability Building programs.

This article was written and created by the eBusiness Institute team

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