Business View Magazine | January 2021

18 BUSINESS VIEW MAGAZINE JANUARY 2021 GUEST SUBMI SS ION: ECOMMERCE Alternative sales channels The next prediction is fuelled by both digital innovation and the rise in ecommerce. As more and more businesses enable ecommerce functionality, there will inevitably be greater competition and an increase in options for consumers to choose from. Therefore, the channels through which businesses sell their products will widen and become more accessible in order to generate the greatest chance of items or services being seen and, ultimately, chosen over competitors’. Fortunately, the rising popularity of online marketplaces and the developments in social media shopping functions, means businesses now have the opportunity to distribute products through more channels than ever before. And this will only continue to increase in the year ahead. When it comes to marketplaces, Amazon is leading the way with a year on year rise in net revenue . Not only is the business’s performance evidence of this, but so is the consumer shopping behaviour shift which is seeing more consumers go directly to Amazon first (40%) when searching for a product, as opposed to Google (30%) or a brand’s owned channel (19%). Facebook and Instagram are also notable channels for ecommerce businesses, with YouTube also growing in popularity and prominence. Although by nature, these platforms are designed for social interaction and content consumption, in recent times, they have placed greater focus on shopping with Facebook’s marketplace, Instagram’s shopping tab and YouTube shopping ad functions, for example. One of the biggest benefits of utilizing social media as a shopping channel is the streamlined customer experience that can be created. Fundamentally, shoppers can see a product on their feed, click through to view it and then place an order without even having to leave the app. is high levels of online shopping will continue into the next twelve months, with no going back to pre-COVID ways. But many organizations are already in a position to accommodate this trend, particularly as 85,000 new businesses enabled ecommerce functionality or joined an online marketplace during the first national lockdown. And now these businesses have made the digital switch, they will want to continue maximizing sales through online channels as the pandemic has created a permanent digital shift in consumer shopping behaviours with more predicted to shop online post-pandemic than before it. Nate Burke, CEO Diginius