It almost seems laughable, the debate of whether or not a retailer would have an e-commerce site in 2013, but the truth is that many well-known brands have yet to cross over to the online retail world.
From discount retailers like TJ Maxx to luxury brands like Hermes, there are still plenty of retailers that are holding out, relying on nothing but good old-fashioned, brick and mortar locations.
E-commerce is projected to reach $256 billion in sales this year, so we can expect to see a flood of retailers continuing to make their move to online retail, particularly with fast-fashion brands like H&M and Zara.
But before jumping on the bandwagon, we must ask if e-commerce really will enhance our brands in a way that is valuable to us and our customers.
For example, does the site run fluidly? Is it easy to navigate? What about the check-out process — are there glitches? Is it confusing? And then of course, there’s the appearance. Is the online site an accurate reflection of what makes your brand unique? Will we get a quick return on the investment of creating an e-commerce site?
Take a look around at your competitors and see what they’re doing — or maybe better yet, what they’re not — and remember that number, $256 billion.
Now ask yourself again, will e-commerce will enhance your brand?