Ecommerce is just beginning

Sometimes it feels like we’ve reached peak ecommerce.

Thanks to Covid and the global pandemic, we accelerated ten years’ worth of expected ecommerce growth in less than ten months. You’re buying more online than you ever have. So am I. So is everyone.

Shopify and Amazon are slugging it out to be the biggest ecommerce platform in the world. With Shopify’s monthly unique visitors surpassing Amazon for the first time earlier this year. (1.16 billion visitors in the three months to June vs. Amazon’s 1.1 billion.)

More than a few analysts think ecommerce is tapped out. But this is just the beginning.

Ideas around retail are deeply connected to the notion of catalog, shopping cart and store. Ecommerce essentially digitized real estate and merchandising. 

But Troy Young points out that when a product is just an entry in a database, when all the fulfillment pipes are connected, when wallets and profiles are digital, and a transaction can happen anywhere, the nature of merchandising and selling will fundamentally change.

Selling atomises and explodes into a million pieces, reconfiguring around sources of inspiration and authority. The entire space is being refactored faster than ever. Every surface is becoming transactional.

And when every surface becomes a place to transact, retail becomes unrecognizable.

Ecommerce becomes anywhere and everywhere all at once.

In ways we haven’t yet imagined.

Older note Newer note