As brands and retailers across the world grapple with changes to their business due to the pandemic, one thing is clear: the shift to online will not revert back. Contrary, the industry will continue to adapt at pace as shopper behaviour keeps evolving to embrace online shopping.
John Maltman, CEO at e.fundamentals, joined the Digital Food & Beverage with his presentation on How to build and sustain a winning position in online retail, sharing his views on why now is the time for brands to play like a winner and seize the opportunity to win on the digital shelf. This article covers his key points and industry predictions, including the presentation and the video on demand.
Watching the video, you will learn:
“I would argue that today is the time to double down on the window of opportunity. To get your offer to the point of competitive advantage in eCommerce is incredibly short. If you wait until things settle back to normal, it will be too late.” — John Maltman, CEO e.fundamentals
CPGs across the world have witnessed eCommerce exploding as the key consumer channel to which many responded by condensing their business development plans of three to five years into a few months. In our latest e.fundamentals / YouGov UK Shopper Insights Report we highlighted that 2.7 million households converted to online grocery shopping since lockdown began. And while the situation has been accompanied by uncertainty, it has moved people to reassess their expenditures. More consumers are focusing on things that matter to them, including looking for a value match across brands and how retailers have responded to their changing needs.
In the presentation, John illustrates the impact this has on brand loyalty and the importance for both sides of the business - retailers and CPGs - to reassess their value propositions and processes, especially the technologies they’re using to manage the levers that drive growth online. Both will be needed to manage assortment with greater rigidity and develop a much greater category view as shoppers, particularly online, are willing to try new things and will move to alternative brands if what they’re looking for is not available.
John Maltman talks about a number of predictions he sees at the backdrop of recent developments in which in-store and online need to be seen as one channel, with urgency.
Product availability, as he puts it, will be “mission-critical” for CPG and retailers. In fact, our e.fundamentals / YouGov UK Shopper Insights Report found that 75% of online shoppers switch brands if the searched-for product is out of stock. The very same report re-emphasised the importance of search. “Being great at search is a must for brands looking to win in the omnichannel”, John states. With retailer’s algorithms changing and shoppers' search patterns evolving, CPGs have to keep up or otherwise risk losing their basket share.
More savvy pricing strategies will emerge and greater opportunities to invest in retail advertising. For this, sales and marketing teams require the right skills and tools to better understand the ROI they’re getting from these investments.
The eCommerce department won’t be able to drive growth in the omnichannel alone. Consequently, frontline managers from category to shopper marketing need the right insights to be able to ascertain what works and so be empowered to make decisions quickly. Rather than perfecting manual processes, smart CPGs invest in the modern-day technology with a view to centralise data asset management linked to digital shelf analytics saving time and money.
Many CPG businesses possess a wealth of in-store category knowledge yet are unsure how to transfer this information to the online shopper journey. At e.fundamentals we do two things: help you fill that knowledge gap quickly and enable you to drive category growth rooted in digital shelf analytics.
Take a quick, guided tour around our platform with one of our digital shelf growth specialist and see for yourself how we can help you win.