Retail & Ecommerce

Against a backdrop of turmoil in 2020, the retail industry overall is set for growth in 2021. With digital transformation efforts accelerating under urgent conditions, investments in digital infrastructure should grow this year. And as 5G networks are finally starting to take off, the technology could bring about positive changes for retail in the near and long terms.

A new paradigm of physical retail, created and accelerated by the pandemic’s disruptive forces, is ready to emerge. In the coming year, the “retail apocalypse” will reach a crescendo as many teetering legacy retailers close hundreds of locations. In their place, frictionless, digitally enabled retail experiences will dot the landscape.

The dominant digital path to purchase begins with a product search—often unbranded—during which the consumer demonstrates intent. They are subsequently delivered paid and organic results for relevant brands and retailers, steering them in the direction of a conversion event. But what about all those times when a consumer doesn’t know what they want? That’s the opportunity for discovery, and where social commerce platforms are beginning to fill the void.

Link Walls, vice president of digital marketing strategy at ChannelAdvisor, talks with Rimma Kats, executive editor at eMarketer, about how marketers should reevaluate retail media, ads on Amazon, and data privacy.

Amid pandemic-accelerated shifts, online communities have become an integral part of the consumer journey. According to Verto Analytics, Reddit users are informed, make fast, high-value purchases, and ultimately become strong brand advocates.

Social entertainment is here to stay. With the dramatic rise of TikTok, along with the growing number of traditional social platforms and standalone apps in this space, we are convinced that short, user-generated videos will be a lasting part of the social media landscape, particularly for organic and influencer marketing, paid advertising, and social commerce.

Even before the pandemic, the direct-to-consumer (D2C) space was heating up in Western Europe. But the side effects of stay-at-home orders helped accelerate D2C’s popularity, and the landscape looks to be permanently altered.

On today's episode, we discuss how the coronavirus changed each generation, Twitter's ecommerce ambitions, what consumers want from brands one year into the pandemic, Virginia becoming the second state to enact a consumer privacy law, TikTok competitors from YouTube and Netflix, how to improve your art viewing experience, and more. Tune in to listen to the discussion with eMarketer principal analyst Jeremy Goldman, analyst Blake Droesch, and director of forecasting at Insider Intelligence Oscar Orozco.