The economic impact of COVID-19 is undeniable, and the need to adapt to new strategies quickly is apparent. With a $2.1 trillion loss in retail sales globally expected it is clear that whilst e-commerce is booming, it cannot offset the decline in offline sales caused by this crisis. For a number of branded manufacturers, across sectors from consumer electronics to fashion, we typically see the majority of revenue still being driven by their retail partners. Whilst both brands and retailers alike feel the impact of this unique situation, there is no denying that the traditional retail sector is taking a big hit.
With the global reach of the pandemic, we see every step of the product cycle impacted — from production to supply chains to actually getting the product into the hands of your customer, there are many obstacles to conquer. Whilst new product releases are being delayed, there is also aging stock in warehouses and stock rooms as a result of the overall drop in retail sales.
More than ever you and your products need to be front of mind wherever your customers choose to shop.
We have summarised a number of common scenarios we have come across as the situation is developing to help you take focused action and react to both the shift in consumer behaviour and supply chain related shortages you may come across.
Managing fulfilment or stock challenges when selling D2C
Maybe some of your bestsellers can’t be restocked right now — but that doesn’t mean you can’t direct the highly qualified traffic further down the funnel. Buy Online allows you to send your customers to authorised retail partners that have stock available for delivery.
Top Tip >> Discover how you can take advantage of Buy Online with our helpful overview.
Diversifying your marketplaces strategy
Holding excess and aging stock can become expensive quickly — if you are looking to shift aging stock quickly, now is the perfect time to diversify your marketplace strategy and consider off-price marketplaces.
Here are a selection of marketplaces in Europe you might like to evaluate:
Secret Sales (UK)
Based in the UK, Secret Sales is a top destination to explore, uncover and buy must-have fashion and sport-wear items alongside quintessential homeware essentials and luxury cosmetics at affordable prices.
Formerly known as Vente Privee, this French powerhouse is a pioneer of the flash sales model. Since its creation in 2001, VeePee shares its love for designer brands every day with its 72 million members.
Afound is a style and deal hunting paradise – selling discounted fashion and lifestyle products, with both external and the H&M group’s own brands, offering a wide range of well-known, popular brands for both women and men.
eBay was the first online marketplace and today, it’s a household name serving 25 million shoppers a month in the UK. It sells a car part every two seconds, and is one of the most popular sites in the UK.
Cdiscount is one of the largest marketplaces in France, frequently competing for the number 1 spot. With 20 million unique users per month and 9 million active customers — they are a firm favourite with both French and international shoppers.
Established in 1999 as an auction site, Allegro has grown into a thriving marketplace where 140,000 companies sell their products. It’s Poland’s biggest e-commerce marketplace and largest search engine, and is very well known across Central and Eastern Europe.
Leveraging the New Normal
As the retail industry slowly adapts to life after lockdown, countries are navigating restrictions and safety measures at different timescales.
Where retail stores are open in a limited capacity or looking to reopen soon, customers are likely looking to spend a minimal amount of time in store, meaning research online comes first — with Buy Local you can list available retail partners and helpful details such as opening hours and store contact details to support a frictionless offline shopping experience for your customer.
The impact of COVID-19 on brands and retailers across the globe will be felt for years to come. ChannelAdvisor has created a dedicated resource centre with useful information and best practices to help you navigate this crisis.