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2016 E-Commerce Trends: Omni Is the New Normal

August 3, 2016 by Judith Magyar 90

Beacons are driving retail sales, customer-centric technology rules, and smartphone revenues are taking off. Here’s how to master the e-commerce trends of the year.

Worldwide online sales are expected to pass the $1.5 trillion mark this year. Differentiating yourself in this highly competitive world is critical for success. So is the right technology.

In retail, differentiating yourself is critical for success

Some companies, like Brazilian retailer DPaschoal, have already realized that selling in the digital world requires a completely different architecture and intelligence. According to Luis Norberto Paschoal, the CEO of the company, many enterprises make the mistake of trying to build a digital addition on top of their existing physical business. “The digital and physical worlds are different, and you need the virtual world to bridge them. That’s why we created a completely new digital business, just like a startup, when we launched our online shop,” he said at Latin America’s largest E-Commerce forum in Sao Paulo last week.

Smart Insights, a company that provides marketing advice to startups, has compiled a list of dominant trends designed to enable any e-commerce business to grow in 2016 and beyond. Here’s the one that counts most for SAP: Enterprises of all sizes need one-stop-shop technology partners, meaning that companies that want to thrive in this fast-paced environment can’t do it without e-commerce platforms that support all touch points – digital, traditional retail, and enterprise technology.

Next-Gen Pioneers

With SAP Hybris solutions, enterprises are more than well-positioned to define next-generation customer engagement.

SAP Hybris customers like DPaschoal and others around the world are changing the face of retail forever. After you purchase online for example, Canadian super-retailer Loblaws schedules a time for you to pick up your shopping bag at the nearest facility.

Purchasing Power, a company that provides financing options so you can buy today and pay tomorrow, makes it easy for millions of Americans to shop thousands of brand name products and educational offers and pay by small installments deducted directly from their salaries.

And Brazilian shoe retailer Schutz has created a Tinder-like app on the SAP Hybris Commerce platform. Shoppers swipe to like or dislike items, and the liked ones are added to their shopping cart for checkout. Schutz Now, available in the Apple App Store and on Google Play, is an entirely new shopping experience.

Checklist for Digital Commerce

SAP Hybris already has the complete checklist for enterprises of all sizes to succeed in the world of digital commerce. It was built to accommodate any of the B2 segments, including B2B, B2C, and B2B2C. This is critical because retailers today are selling in every imaginable channel to many different audiences.

The software supports all three pillars of digital e-commerce. It includes a virtual shop where customers can browse for products up front, along with a back-office tool that searches for the items in stock. Retailers can see exactly what customers have looked at or ordered online, so when they come into the physical shop there is total transparency regarding the customer. And finally, SAP Hybris Marketing and Merchandising allows retailers to completely personalize their services.

Customer engagement and commerce is the fastest-growing cloud application market and the most critical for retailers. With SAP Hybris solutions, retailers can win where they already play today.

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