E-Commerce: Growing and Driving Sales

February 2, 2017

By Bill Duggan

In the past month, several major retail institutions announced closings of brick and mortar locations:

  • Sears/Kmart is closing 150 stores
  • The Limited closed all 250 of its stores and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy
  • Macy's is closing 68 stores

The Macy's announcement cited, "declining traffic in our stores" but "strong performance of our highly developed online business."

While it's sad to see stores close, and local communities and jobs affected, what's clear is that e-commerce is hot. Very hot.

According to the just-released ANA white paper, "E-Commerce Insights," which surveyed members of ANA, 79 percent of respondents said that their company is currently conducting e-commerce initiatives. Among those doing so:

  • A majority (66 percent) are conducting more e-commerce initiatives in 2016 than in 2015. 
  • 59 percent have dedicated e-commerce departments. 
  • 47 percent indicated that their e-commerce department reports to the chief marketing officer (way more than any other reporting structure).
  • 73 percent believe that e-commerce drives incremental sales for their organization.

So e-commerce is growing and drives sales. And marketing, rather than sales or IT, is most often driving e-commerce.

The ANA member company participants in the survey were varied and included AB InBev, AT&T, Dr Pepper Snapple, GE, Mondelēz, and State Farm.

Finally, I thought the wording of a storefront sign I saw today (below) in New York City was a sign of the times — ONLINE AND IN STORES — as surely that wording would have been reversed not too long ago.

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