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The Seattle Situation… And How Retailers Are Dealing With It

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To talk about profitable e-Commerce with retailers in the year 2022, one must address the elephant in the room: how are retailers working to coexist with Amazon? In our most recent research on eCommerce, our respondents were nothing short of clear: if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.

Their number one strategy for co-existence? Make  entire swaths of merchandise available on, whatever that means to current profits (and, we might argue, long-term brand identity).

Figure 1: If You Can’t Beat ‘Em…

Source: RSR Research, January 2022

What’s more, it’s not only that these retailers are choosing to migrate more of their catalogs onto Amazon, but they are choosing to do so at a surprising rate. Consider how much this “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” mentality has impacted retail in the past year alone (Figure 2).

Figure 2: Post Haste

Source: RSR Research, January 2022

What will be the effects of this? What will it mean for the industry when shoppers (who just a short time ago purchased items from their favorite retailers) increasingly purchase those goods from, only to have those very same retailers fulfill the order – with none of the credit and thinner profits? Can individual retail brands still flourish while essentially serving as a blinded distribution point for a monolithic overbrand?

It certainly doesn’t seem to be a winning strategy.

However, one trend that emerges throughout the full report is that Retail Winners are even more bullish on trends that are favored by the aggregate response pool. Case in point: Winners are even more favorable to the idea that new traffic to the actual retail brand’s website(s) will be fundamental to success (Figure 3).

Figure 3: Selected Differences: More New Eyes Even More Important To The Best Performers

Source: RSR Research, January 2022

More than 9 out of 10 Retail Winners cite new site traffic as their top priority for 2022, and while some of these retailers are no doubt currently selling through, this data points very clearly to their intention to be the preferred website. All retailers recognize how vital it is to get shoppers to start their journeys on their own E-commerce sites – but Winners just stress it even more. The question is how are they going to accomplish this?

We invite everyone to read the full report to find out. It is available by following this link.

Newsletter Articles February 22, 2022
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