Retailers and their partners require a method to understand consumer actions and interactions in the social commerce world and this requires big data techniques and tools to support the level of detail required for this analysis.  Considering the number of social outlets, channels and mobile apps involved in social commerce the level of data required for analysis is immense.  This requires a thoughtful strategy and implementation in order to achieve value and develop the analysis practices to understand the consumer interaction and support and react to the consumer demands.  These consumer interactions cross channels and outlets from eCommerce to social networks and this requires a very thoughtful and continuous analysis of the outlets and the data in order to achieve and most importantly maintain a value chain from the data collected.

 

Retailers must engage their extended partner chain to develop and maintain the steady stream of information that can be utilized to support shopping and purchasing demands of consumers.  Without this strategy to collect and analyze this data retailers and their extended partner chain will flounder from one new consumer demand to another.  This cannot be maintained and hope to succeed without a robust strategy and the tools to monitor and maintain this strategy.  This strategy must cross and include all of the extended partners through the chain and must be maintained and provide value across all extended partners in the chain.  This requires an extremely high level of collaboration and flow of information across the partner chain which itself requires a high level of commitment and participation across the partner chain.

 

The good news is that the tools are currently available to support these needs and the bad news is that it requires an investment across the chain that many partners have not anticipated or planned to engage.  This requires leadership and engagement in order to begin.  I do not think this necessarily requires any one partner to start the process but it does require a champion that can articulate, engage and encourage participation from other partners.  This requires someone to start the process by beginning with a definition of their objectives and then an analysis and definition of requirements and steps to meet the objectives. 

 

This initial start does not require participation from any one partner in order to begin, the social commerce practice and methods touch all partners in the extended chain and each partner will gain from the collaboration.  This ‘simply’ requires at least one of the partners to begin the exercise and then to begin their engagement with other partners to develop the methods and capabilities.  The one key to the success of this exercise though is investment and participation from partners.

 

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?