In May we posted a blog entry, Selling Us On How You Sell, announcing a new e-commerce award that Mindtree incubated with IGD, the membership organization for the retail and consumer goods industries. Along with that announcement we offered a challenge – for CPG and retail companies to submit their work for review and consideration under this award.
I’m happy to say that the strong response kept us very busy and made for some tough decisions, with submissions from premiere retail and CPG companies. We have announced which companies were chosen as finalists, so in this post I would like to discuss some of the key factors and trends that stood out among those chosen as finalists.
Channel Management – We had entries from both retailers and CPGs, and for some CPGs it’s just not feasible to sell direct-to-consumer. Among these companies, those with a strong Channel Management approach, or who displayed a dedication to the importance of Channel Management, stood out from the pack.
Direct-to-Consumer Strategies – Among CPGs who do have a viable opportunity to sell direct-to-consumer, we noticed two distinct trends, indicating that one size may not fit all. Some companies prefer to create their own platforms for selling directly to consumers, and depending on volume they have either brought these platforms in-house or are using SaaS platforms. Meanwhile, other companies use established marketplaces instead (such as Amazon) to drive e-commerce in a way that tends to be less expensive, without the marketing costs associated with raising consumer awareness about native platforms.
Content-Led Marketing – Creative, engaging content as marketing is no longer just the domain of fashion retail – it is now finding it’s way into other areas. Companies are using content to engage, inspire, or educate the consumer before prompting or coupons leading them to buy, and it’s resulting in a lot of commerce.
Named Consumers and CRM – Companies who are able to interact, understand or observe a named consumer is proving to be of great value. These allow companies to find unique insights about their products, consumer behavior and affinities. In today’s landscape strong shopper awareness is one of the best paths to growth because it can greatly improve customer relationship management.
So, to sum up what we learned in a very quick statement, it’s that content, customer relationship management, and commerce is the trinity that’s driving online revenue.