Staying on top of the online retail game
It’s been a while since the world changed their shopping habits from offline to online modes. Smart retailers understood the need to offer a shopping experience independent of the location of the consumer. And online retail stores have solved that need.
The growth of online retail is nothing short of a fairy tale. In 2014, total e-commerce retail sales worldwide reached a value of $ 1336 billion and are expected to reach $ 6388 billion by 2024 at a staggering 16.93 percent CAGR!
And as you delve deeper into this meteoric growth in online retail, you’ll find commerce platforms like Shopify at its epicenter. Shopify enables businesses to build a large-scale online store using its site building, hosting, and payment solutions. Although it started with humble beginnings in 2006, it has since grown into an industry leader and a name synonymous with ecommerce.
Today, nearly fifteen years after its inception, Shopify powers more than 1,750,000 businesses in 175 countries. So how does a platform like Shopify stay relevant and continue to rank at the top even after so many years? Let’s find out.
Provide a robust infrastructure for small businesses
Investing in digital innovation and transformation can be a costly proposition for most small businesses. But without them, these companies can perish in the deep red ocean.
Shopify gives these SMBs the ability to set up their online stores, place ads, process payments, fulfill orders, and manage inventory – all for a small fee and with minimal effort.
It’s a lot cheaper and takes very little time than hiring a software developer to set up their own online store. And it’s a more cost-effective alternative to Amazon, which takes the lion’s share of every sale as a commission.
Most Shopify merchants are not your go-to techpreneurs who can spend their time working with multiple tools and solutions to connect different workflows in their store. One of the pillars of Shopify’s success is its ability to provide a comprehensive toolbox of low-code / no-code solutions such as Shopify Pay, Shopify Hosted, and Shopify Gift Cards to tailor the store to a retailer’s needs.
In summary, Shopify offers a solid infrastructure that helps small entrepreneurs easily build, operate, and scale their business operations.
It’s an ecosystem for everyone to thrive
The heart of Shopify’s unique ecosystem is its developers and partner networks. Shopify allows third-party developers to build apps that extend their native functionality. This encourages freelancers, designers and small agencies to become “Shopify experts” who can guide and help merchants create and manage their online storefronts.
Every step of a merchant’s entrepreneurial journey is a lucrative opportunity for these Shopify experts to find solutions to a variety of issues – from product sourcing, marketing, order fulfillment, customer management, and more.
In 2009, the Shopify App Store was born, resulting in the creation of several unique apps that retailers could plug into their Shopify website as add-ons. There are many apps on the market that hundreds of thousands of store owners are using. This tight integration and the easy availability of a complete ecosystem increase the rigidity of the platform.
Today, you can find over 6,000 apps available to the public on the Shopify App Store. The average Shopify merchant uses about six apps to manage their store.
Study shows that in 2020, more than 450 million people shopped at Shopify stores. This represents approximately $ 120 billion in gross merchandise volume. Shopify also claimed that its partners made $ 12.5 billion in 2020. That’s 4 times the revenue from Shopify’s own platform.
“There are many verticals that help along the merchant’s journey – marketing, customer service, shipping and fulfillment. Each is a billion dollar industry on its own.” explains Fatima Yusuf, Director of Ecosystem Partnerships at Shopify.
With its Square-like point of sale system, Amazon-like online stores, Google-like SEO services and finally, with its new DHL-like logistics network, Shopify has disrupted almost every area of the retail industry. by retail.
Create new experiences for all audiences
A study by Gen.video and Geometry Global indicates that more than 90 percent of social media users are persuaded to make a purchase after seeing social media content about the products or the brand. Of this number, 33% of users say that influencers have a role to play in their purchasing decisions.
More and more Shopify merchants are relying on social media platforms to grow their businesses. The recent TikTok and Shopify alliance is a classic example. This represents a unique opportunity for Shopify’s 1.75 million merchants to reach TikTok’s Millennial and Gen Z audience.
Shopify merchants have been empowered to create, run, and manage their TikTok marketing campaigns through their Shopify dashboard.
In this TikTok Shopping, users checkout through the Shopify app. All they have to do is click on the product link in TikTok. The user will be directed to the merchant’s website, where they can make the purchase. Shopify takes care of the entire transaction and payment.
These innovations allow Shopify users to remain competitive and disruptive in their individual markets as new consumer behaviors continue to reshape the future of retail.
Tobias Lutke once said in a Tweeter, “Amazon is trying to build an empire. Shopify is trying to arm the rebels.” Even today, Shopify follows this philosophy. Its mission is to create a more democratic e-commerce environment where even small and medium-sized businesses can thrive and create a unique space for themselves in a marketplace primarily run by giants like Amazon and Walmart. And that’s the Shopify success story!
Baskar Agneeswaran is currently CEO of Vajro, a technology company dedicated to improving the mobile app experience for small and medium businesses. Building on years of experience in AI and software based solutions, Vajro is emerging as one of the global leaders in live video commerce technology.