New research from Profitero and Kantar Consulting reveals that 76% of brands are looking to accelerate their eCommerce investment in order to capitalize on the $3.5T digital opportunity in 2019 (source: eMarketer). Profitero and Kantar Consulting found that brands have already made huge investments in eCommerce, expanding their global eCommerce staffing and headcount by 83%, on average, versus the prior year.
The 2019 eCommerce Outlook for Brandssurveyed 200+ eCommerce professionals to get a pulse on how brands are evolving to tackle the eCommerce opportunity, with more than 7,000 LinkedIn profiles analyzed globally to establish trends and patterns in eCommerce hiring and headcount growth.
1. Brands must act now to build digital capabilities or risk being left behind
76% of brands surveyed are increasing their investment in eCommerce, with 35% spending more than 10% of their channel revenue on digital tools, solutions and agency support. Brands that fail to keep pace risk losing long-term competitive advantage.
2. The arms race for eCommerce talent is set to intensify
Compared to 2017, the number of people with eCommerce job titles grew by 83%, on average. We found some brands, including Heineken, Duracell, Revlon and LMVH, expanded their eComm headcount by 500% or more in the past year. As demand for digital specialists outstrips supply, brands must invest heavily in training and development to bring new eComm skills to the workforce and talent they already have.
3. Outsourcing eCommerce functions is an effective way to get the job done
Brands are leaning on agencies to fill resource gaps and support critical eCommerce functions, especially in areas that require heavy specialization and are hard to build in-house. Two-thirds of brands outsource SEO/SEM; half outsource content creation and digital marketing campaigns.
4. 2019 will be the “Year of eCommerce Data Analytics”
The rise of algorithmic-driven retail means data analytics is no longer a nice to have, but a central commercial function. 73% of brands spend a portion of their eCommerce budget on data analytics services; 41% of brands plan to expand their eComm data analytics headcount in the coming year.
5. Focus on profitability and flexible selling models is real
55% of brands peg pricing and profitability as their #1 eCommerce challenge to tackle. One way to deal with profitability pressures is through 1P/3P hybrid selling, which 55% of large brands and 74% of small brands are already pursuing or exploring.
Click here to view the complete 2019 eCommerce Outlook for Brands Executive Summary.