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What Holiday Shopping Trends Say For the Future

Simon Eskow Supply Chain Articles Leave a Comment

How did you do over Christmas? Of course, at this time of year, reports come in showing how recent holiday shopping trends went for everyone. Globally, sales climbed higher, though, in the UK, they shrank.

Holiday Shopping Trends Point to the Omnichannel

Based on where people spent in major markets, Amazon rocked, eCommerce boomed, and physical retail held its own. While some physical retailers did better than others, success came from better inventory management, promotional efforts, and the omnichannel.  And with some channels proving better tools than others, we see holiday shopping trends point to the importance of true omnichannel to sell and fulfill however customers wish to shop.

Amazon Dominates

The number of channels you use doesn’t add up to a true omnichannel. Rather, omnichannel retailing allows you to sell and fulfill orders however your customers shop. With Amazon’s record for fast and flexible home delivery, it’s no wonder more businesses sell on Amazon as part of their omnichannel strategy. And in 2017, by one estimate, Amazon took 89% of online holiday spending in the US for the month following Thanksgiving. It’s a good argument for making Amazon part of your omnichannel strategy this year.

And eCommerce Keeps Growing

By now, selling and fulfilling orders through your own website should be a no-brainer. Every year, eCommerce consistently stands out among all holiday shopping trends. In 2017, global eCommerce sales increased by 18% over the 2016 holiday season. That’s great by itself, but unifying your eCommerce website with your all your fulfillment and sales processes gives you true omnichannel power.

Holiday Shopping Trends in the Stores

While US retailers saw a 4.9% increase in sales over the holidays, Christmas capped a lean year in the UK. Economic conditions led to low consumer spending year-round and a 1% drop in holiday sales. However, retailers that did well at Christmas attributed their success to smart inventory management, among other reasons. While all business deals with circumstances (ie, the economy) beyond their control, brick-and-mortars have an added problem. The weather, for example, can affect brick-and-mortar much more than online channels.

Omnichannel Just Makes Sense

With a true omnichannel that encompasses marketplaces, eCommerce, and retail, you broaden your reach and give your customers a seamless experience. We think this is the direction all businesses must head to optimize revenue in the face of sometimes unpredictable customer behavior.

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