Note: This post first appeared on LocalVox.com.
For the next week, we are putting a big focus on thinking about the Retail Industry given our Retail 150 Local Marketing Report Card research. When watching 60 Minutes, you might think that in a couple of years most retail sales would all occur online and be delivered by airborne drone. Instead, the industry data paints a much different picture.
91% of retail is still local.
And though eCommerce is in fact growing, eCommerce growth is slowing over time.
And in looking at what generates eCommerce, outside of a retail site, Amazon is the key winner and quickly outmaneuvering search engines like Google with value added customer services like Amazon Prime and ratings and reviews.
But online is more important than ever – to in-store retail sales. About half of in-store sales is influenced online and that percentage is growing every year.
But retailers are doing a poor job of using local online marketing to drive in-store sales
This creates a mandate for most retailers to effectively use local online marketing to drive in-store sales. Gartner released research that showed that large, multi-location retailers that integrate local marketing processes will increase revenue 10-15% by 2015. That’s a billion opportunity for many of them. Sadly, most large retailers are failing in the 4 Pillars of Local Marketing according to our recent Retail 150 Annual Local Marketing Report Card. The average grade was just 3.58 out of 10 and local social … well, no one is really doing it well.
So retail is still local, but the web is actually much more important than retailers realize – not to eCommerce revenues but in-store revenues. Given the failings of the industry to adapt to leverage local online marketing, now is actually the time to leap frog the competition and quickly drive differentiation and top line revenue with a high degree of ROI.