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e-Commerce Industry News

October 28, 2013
Competing with the big players in the online space
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October 28, 2013
An omnichannel approach can help retailers capture market share. An omnichannel approach can help retailers
capture market share.
Major online retailers such as Amazon have quickly established themselves as big dogs in the eCommerce industry, with many other merchants (both large and small) taking a reactionary approach to dealing with these major companies. For instance, many brick-and-mortar retailers have gone as far as enacting "showrooming" policies that help minimize the number of consumers who go to their stores to check a product out, only to turn around and finalize the purchase on Amazon's Web site.

However, as RIS News contributor Curt Bimschleger recently wrote, Amazon and other such big-name Web retailers may have less pull than a number of merchants think. Last year, Amazon accounted for only 25 percent of all eCommerce sales, illustrating that savvy online merchants still have a lot of room to grow and improve.

Utilizing an omnichannel approach to win market share
A seamless omnichannel approach can be one of the many strategies retailers use to combat low-cost online merchants. Many retailers are completely shifting the way they operate, from their customer service platforms to their order management systems, to better serve customers who are using the Internet, brick-and-mortar stores, mobile apps and any other shopping avenue to conduct transactions and receive their products.

"Some retailers are already ahead of the curve, successfully merging the digital and physical selling worlds into one seamless customer experience," Bimschleger explained. "One retailer has a 'one-view inventory' of its entire enterprise. With no disparate inventory across multiple businesses, this retailer provides the option of home delivery or store pickup, as well as a consistent return policy regardless of the channel."

Clearly omnichannel retailing can help merchants provide additional value to their customers by creating a more convenient shopping experience overall. On top of that, it may improve a retailer's operational efficiency, which is crucial in such a competitive industry. These two benefits combined will allow merchants to compete with even the biggest retailers such as Amazon and win more market share.