It’s been a busy holiday shopping season so far. To date, U.S. shoppers spent $29.7 billion online over the entire holiday season. Amazon once again dominated online commerce; however, eBay and several traditional retailers made significant digital sales, largely driven by improved mobile shopping experiences. Amazon also announced their foray into physical retail through their technology-powered brick-and-mortar store, Amazon Go.
Cyber Monday Ranks as the Biggest Online Shopping Day in U.S. History
Cyber Monday 2016 marked the largest and busiest online sales day in the history of U.S. ecommerce. According to Adobe Digital Insights, shoppers spent $3.45 billion on Cyber Monday, up by 12.1% from last year and higher than Adobe’s $3.36 billion sales estimate.
The record-breaking sales was largely driven by Amazon.com, mobile shopping technology, and top-selling electronics. As the most visited online site, Amazon accounted for 31% of the Cyber Weekend revenue, followed by eBay, Walmart, Kohl’s and Target.
It’s interesting to note that traditional brick-and-mortar retailers, such as Walmart, Kohl’s and Target, made huge strides this year, beating company records for digital sales by making significant improvements to their shopping apps. In fact, mobile shopping accounted for 47% of traffic to retail websites and 31% of sales.
These numbers prove that consumers today demand the convenience of online and mobile shopping. eCommerce has steadily been rising, thanks to industry giants like Amazon and eBay. The future of retail is truly in the digital, and retailers will need to embrace technology to survive and thrive in the market.
Jet.com Sales Got a Lift This Holiday Season
Two-year-old online marketplace Jet.com reported significant growth and better mobile engagement over its second holiday shopping season, thanks to better preparation and learning from Walmart’s supply chain experience.
Total sales on Jet.com grew fourfold year-over-year on both Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and average order volume grew 19% year-over-year on Cyber Monday. Mobile orders also accounted for 6.1% of the holiday weekend’s total sales, compared to 4.2% last year.
“Learning some lessons from our colleagues at Walmart on the timing and speed of replenishment has allowed us to maintain incredible in-stock rates on the products we ship ourselves,” said Liza Landsman, chief customer officer at Jet.
Jet typically ships 30% of orders in-house, while the remaining 70% is handled by brands and retailers that sell through the marketplace. During the holiday season, however, 75-80% of orders are sold by third-party sellers. While the marketplace sounds promising to third-party sellers, Jet.com has long ways to go to compete with Amazon’s marketplace model.
Amazon Go Could Make Retail Checkout Obsolete
Amazon is testing a new concept convenience store that boasts no checkout lines, eliminating the bottleneck of cashiers in traditional grocers. This “grab-and-go” experience is Amazon’s latest attempt to bring innovative technology into the brick-and-mortar space.
Known as the Amazon Go store, customers will be able to pluck items off shelves and walk out without having to wait in a checkout line. Once customers leave the store, items are billed to their Amazon.com accounts.
This “self-driving” store likely uses motion-capturing cameras, sensors and microphones to enable this new auto-checkout technology. While the concept is promising for busy city dwellers, the challenge for Amazon will be creating error-free checkouts and implementation. If the cost is too pricey, is it worth it?
The Amazon Go pilot store is located in downtown Seattle and is currently only open to Amazon employees. It is expected to go public in early 2017.
Via The Verge