How Do You Like Them Bricks? E-Commerce is Eating the Retail World
The face of ecommerce is changing and traditional stalwarts like ebay and amazon are under assault. Hot new social shopping companies like Wanelo, Fancy and Wish have joined the ranks of successful verticalized marketplaces like Etsy and Shopcaster and niche pure ecomm companies such as Nasty Gal and Net-a-Porter in challenging the incumbents.
The trends I see are as such:
1.Social shopping is hot. It capitalizes on sharing and friend recommendations to drive sales. Wanelo went from 1m to 10m users in a flash. This trend is for real.
2. Verticalization allows for brand building and target market focus. This helps build strong engagement with buyers. Shopping at a place where you can buy both a back to school outfit and diapers just isn’t that cool of a statement to make.
3. Marketplaces are all the rage. Marketplaces simulate the experience of going to a mall or a shopping district by aggregating stores (fashion boutiques, for instance) in one place. This helps drive both online and offline sales for small business. These provide a ton more value for SMBs than did the scourge of Groupon and LivingSocial.
4. Mobile is raging. The fastest growing ecommerce companies are mobile first. Jack Threads and Wanelo are both great examples. Jack Threads (a pure ecommerce play at men’s clothes) recently announced that 50% of its transactions happen on mobile.
5. Ecommerce and marketplaces are hot areas for startups. I checked out mattermark’s stats and 23 e-commerce companies scored over 1000 and three of those scored over 1500.
So what’s next? Well, with 90% of retail commerce still taking place offline, ecommerce companies will need to find a way to get closer to real world sales. Amazon, eBay and google are sure to have a part to play in going after in-store sales.
Marc Andreessen’s famous quote is that software is eating the world. Apparently the ecommerce kids like the taste of bricks. Quick, somebody start an artisanal brick cafe in Soma.
Please leave me your comments and thoughts. What is your favourite ecommerce company and what trends are you seeing?