E-commerce’s growth is rapidly outpacing that of brick-and-mortar retailers. The National Retail Foundation predicted just a 2.8% growth for in-store purchases in 2017. In contrast, the group expects online retail to grow 8-12% this year. If NRF’s prediction holds, e-commerce sales could reach $443 billion in 2017. (Statistics according to Business Insider.)

Amazon continues to dominate the online retail space and traditional retailers such as Walmart, Kohl’s and Target struggle to catch up. We know that e-commerce is expanding, but is there a tipping point? Will e-commerce continue to truncate in-store sales until retailers are forced to close all physical locations? Or, is there a point at which e-commerce sales top out and retail reaches a new equilibrium of online and in-store sales?

Everyone from economists to sociologists to the retailers themselves are trying to predict just that. In order to stay ahead of the curve, retailers must adjust to the current climate. Over a series of blog posts, we’ll explore every angle of this question:

  • We’ll look at a case study that highlights the importance of syncing the e-commerce and bricks and mortar sides of your business;
  • We’ll dive into the analytics on current e-commerce sales;
  • We’ll look at the way e-commerce is slashing retail jobs and shifting an industry that, according to a New York Times article, employs one out of every 10 Americans;
  • And we’ll look at the mind of consumers to predict their buying behavior. For example, are millennials driving the e-commerce boom? Or is this an inevitable progression that spans generations?

Most importantly, we’ll provide insights for both retailers and manufacturers to adjust to these uncertain times. We plan to plot the growth of e-commerce one industry at a time and compare the rise of digital sales for everything from apparel to food to hardware to pet supplies. Stay tuned for a matrix that drills down on each industry’s digital sales, growth potential and generational data.

What online trends have you identified in your industry? Tell us in the comments section below.

Ironbridge Software was founded in 1989 by Mike Dickenson. Mike’s unparalleled expertise and passion for technology led him to create the first-ever analytical solution for the Consumer Packaged Goods Industry. He assembled a team that has more than 50 years experience and Ironbridge Software has been leading the field ever since. Back in 1989, Mike’s vision was to blend database expertise, analytical expertise and software capabilities to produce a complete service for the CPG industry. At Ironbridge, we’re passionate about solving our clients’ problems, one insight at a time.