The Shifting Role of eCommerce


Buying behaviors have changed since the dawn of the internet and Amazon. The pandemic accelerated the change. The continuing shift towards eCommerce can be seen everywhere, from vintage gift stores in Denver to retail stores selling their brick and mortar stores to accommodate the online demand.

Brands continue to pour money into their online presence and the data supports the transition. From customer queries, funneling, purchase history, social behavior, and customer segments, the shift is ubiquitous.

How does eCommerce affect everyday life, the internet itself, and how do businesses reach customers? Continue reading to learn more.

What Are the Effects of the Shift Towards eCommerce?

We are still uncovering the effects of the changing role of eCommerce. There have been understandable concerns about what this shift does to labor, the company environment itself, and how it affects the job market.

Data Security

One glaring area of concern is cybersecurity and sensitive customer data. As companies migrate to eCommerce, they will need to adhere to more stringent compliance regulations. With the presence of social engineering, consumers also need to be extra careful with how they approach the eCommerce environment.

Increased Access to Goods

But these effects still point to the underlying shift toward eCommerce shopping. Though it presents challenges, there is no denying that the benefits are there. Though the pandemic had its hand in some of this increase, a $244 billion increase in eCommerce sales in 2020 signifies an underlying paradigm shift.

The most obvious reason for this shift comes from convenience. From buying your groceries online to having retail therapy at your fingertips at all times, eCommerce simplifies things for consumers.

You can also see the benefits of this at work in underprivileged areas that may not have had access to basic necessities before eCommerce.

Concerning Effect On Labor

One of the concerns of the shift towards a more eCommerce environment regards to labor. In a National Bureau of Economic  Research paper, the shift was found to cause a 2.5 percent decrease in local workers’ yearly salaries. This equates to around an $825 dollar decrease in gross salary. It also found that an eCommerce fulfillment center can reduce employment growth in the host county by an average of 1,000 jobs per quarter.

Increase In Technology and Data Investments

The shift to eCommerce also corresponds with a continued increase in tech and data investments. As more and more companies increase their eCommerce investment, they need the technological infrastructure to support the shift. They also need the data to support the shift. This has caused an increased area of investment for companies looking to bolster their brand reach and expand their customer base.

Bottom Line- The Shifting Role of eCommerce

Businesses of all kinds are shifting towards the eCommerce model. Whether these companies need to keep their brick and mortar stores varies depending on their industry, location, and revenue dynamics. There can more easily be eCommerce accounting compared to a chiropractor. The inverse question (whether companies should have an eCommerce option) seems to be a resounding yes at this juncture.

The increased costs of cybersecurity and compliance are drawbacks but they simply don’t outweigh the positive impact eCommerce can have on a company’s bottom line. With the limited overhead companies pay for how much they can broaden their brand reach and increase sales, the eCommerce shift is likely here to stay. Companies should consider their eCommerce department as an integral component of their overall strategy.

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