E-commerce – Trend 6

A channel, not THE channel in China e-commerce. This is the biggest e-commerce market in the world, and you’d struggle to think of anything that you can’t buy online in China. But there are some categories in this sea of online sales that are battling to stay afloat; they’re finding it tough to maintain margins, create meaningful consumer connections and control their own brand image in the e-commerce world. E-commerce: A channel, not THE channel We noted a year ago that brands would need to bridge the gap between physical and virtual shopping, and this continues to be the case. In recent months, online retailers have been making big investments in physical space, but the bigger challenge will be in blending sales across channels to get the ideal balance between margin and volume. The brands that manage to work across the channels – not just use e-commerce to float flagging volumes – might take a hit on growth this year, but will be far better positioned for the inevitable changes ahead.