eCommerce is alive and it’s gone mobile

I remember sitting in uni lectures hearing about eCommerce and how it was going to be this amazing revolution, that was back in 2002. It’s now 2018 and it’s only been in the last few years that it’s truly become the norm and disruptive to traditional bricks and mortar stores.

According to Australia Post data analysis, online shopping increased by 19.2% in Australia in 2017, up from 11.5% increase in 2016. And it’s expected to grow at a similar rate in 2018.

I think it’s fair to say that it took some time for people to adapt and become comfortable with online shopping. Now we’re extremely comfortable with a bit of retail therapy in our pjs on the couch and we do it on our mobile phone! Gone are the days of using a desktop or laptop, 29% of our purchases are made between 7-10pm and mobile phone purchase increased by 52% in 2016.

More and more retailers are getting on board. Beyond the big platforms of eBay, Amazon and Tmall the emergence of easy to use eCommerce platforms like Shopify and Woocommerce are making eCommerce available to small businesses. Anyone can now start an online store with minimal investment of time and money. It’s possible to have an online store up and running in under an hour. No expensive developers needed.

I launched an online store selling women’s bags called Liv Aktiv 6 months ago using the Shopify platform and I have to say it was incredibly easy to set up. The hardest part was coming up with the descriptions for the products! If I can do this so can you.

Fashion items like clothes, handbags and jewelry are still experiencing growth in sales, up 27.2% in 2017 in Australia.  Globally, other popular items include books, recreational goods, health products and cosmetics.

The emergence of drop shipping in recent years has reduced the risks for small and large businesses associated with holding large amounts of expensive inventory and dealing with logistics. The drop shipper warehouses the product and ships it direct to your customer for you. This is something I’m yet to try, but I think the benefits out weigh the downside if you select your suppliers carefully.

If you’re thinking about launching an online store, go for it. The tools are at your finger tips and the growth opportunities are still there, but make sure you have a plan to get customers to your virtual door.

Information provided by the Rachel Craze is general in nature and does not take into consideration your personal situation. It is for educational purposes only and does not constitute formal financial or taxation advice. Before acting, you should consider seeking independent advice that is tailored to your needs.

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