A report recently published by Kantar Worldpanel predicts the revenue stream of FMCG through e-commerce rising from $49 billion to $150 billion within ten years. A few years ago this would have seemed absurd. However, the dramatic rise of the UK’s online sales coupled with rapidly developing Asian countries (South Korea and China) and a continuous rise of American e-commerce has lead to a 28% rise in FMCG e-commerce globally in the past year alone.
With this change the shopper has also evolved; we have seen a drop in physical stores trying to compete in price and instead provide a more experiential role with more emotional involvement for the customer, which in-turn influences more online sales. Online the visitor expects a quicker, more convenient purchasing experience than can be achieved at home, on the bus or even on the toilet. Shopping used to be a “separate event” in our lives, but the push for mobile sites and ‘novel’ rewards for becoming social media brand ambassadors has changed the playing field.
“Consumers are buying into more experiential components. They want to feel good in the store, they want to really be impressed with the website – it’s much more emotional” – James Dion, founder of Dion co Inc.
In the UK 82% of internet users regularly shop online and spending is growing 10% year on year, but is the rise of online shopping hiding a shadowy secret? According to Econsultancy, customer satisfaction has dropped to its lowest point since 2010. This could be due to a number of factors, such as the rise in shoppers or the market struggling to keep up with demands. However, it outlines problems brands face with such exponential growth. So we should be asking ourselves: are we spending enough time designing safety nets for when our perfectly designed sites fail?
With this shift many brands are starting to ask themselves, “what will become of the physical store in a few years?” We predict FMCG brands to use this space as not only an experiential site, but also a tool to solidify brand recognition and take advantage of advertising in new and different ways that can utilise technology. The Nike fuelstore, for example, has achieved huge success online and offline by combining its products with interactive technology.
Personally, I can’t wait to see the evolution of FMCG online and the innovative solutions to these new problems being tackled with a mixture of technology and clever emotional experiences.