The expansion and growth of eCommerce sales and the consumer acceptance and even more important embracing eCommerce shopping brings with it another opportunity for big data practices to help understand and build the consumer relationship.  This is an important aspect to the eCommerce shopping experience that can be used to build the personal relationship with the consumer that is so important for sales and consumer retention.  Big data methods and practices can help to sift through the vast amounts of data the is available regarding purchase and shopping habits as a result of eCommerce consumer shopping.  This analysis is the only way that the retailer will be able to understand the consumer practices and also provides a means to engage the consumer again after the purchase is completed.

 

Amazon provides probably the best example of value added capabilities resulting from big data methods and practices.  It starts with the collection of data and follows through to the experience rating and then the communication tail continues for quite some time with their requests for response to consumer questions about the product.  Additional the eCommerce platform provides for accurate consumer ‘click-through’ steps and flow through the web site providing both browsing data along with shopping and follows through with purchase practices.  This data is invaluable in website design and product placement in addition the information regarding shopping cart abandonment and wish list can be invaluable in developing your sales approach.  Another major benefit to these big data methods and practices is that the data becomes more valuable for research and analysis as the volume grows.  Data volume provides information on trends and helps to validate hypotheses.

 

An additional benefit derived from these big data methods and practices is the relationship with the consumer.  These practices provide the with the opportunity to develop a direct relationship with the retailer.  The practice of requesting product and experience reviews allows the consumer to react to the experience and in addition, it allows the retailer and manufacturer to respond directly to the consumer regarding their issue.  This information is enormously valuable to the retailer while it is developing the personal shopping relationship with the consumer.  I am one of those people that provide ratings on service, experience and also try to answer consumer questions, While this may be a minority of shoppers responding to these requests, it does provide both the good and the bad for each of the products and allows the retailer to improve their vendors’ performance as well.

 

The power comes when you blend all of this information together to support research and analysis of consumer shopping practices and also product sales trends along with valuable information on product improvements.  I see these capabilities as the factors that will drive the increase in eCommerce sales.  As wireless data networks improve these factors can only increase the acceptance and utilization of eCommerce and omni channel retail.

 

And now for the audience participation portion of the show…

ECommerce will have wide ranging impacts on both the retail and manufacturing sectors.  How can you focus these abilities to improve the consumer's experience?  Improving the consumer’s experience will require a re-evaluation of the sales channels, the manufacturing channels and practices and the supply chain channels and practices from the raw materials to the consumers’ homes.  In order to ensure and maintain success in this new reality you must harness the tools and capabilities in many new areas.  How can you support these continuously changing requirements?