E-commerce has revolutionized the shopping experience for Americans, as point-and-click brings new meaning to the term "shop til you drop." To better serve customers, retailers are doubling down on their investments in convenience shopping portals, and in the process, opening up new employment opportunities for veterans and newcomers of the sector.
These investments are in multichannel shopping, meaning the online and offline gateways that consumers use to buy various goods and services, whether that's in-store, via mobile devices or through social media. In the National Retail Federation's State of Retailing study, 55 percent of respondents said they'd increase their spending in social, in contrast to 51 percent who pointed to paid search as their main marketing medium.
NRF Vice President of Research and Industry Analysis Mark Mathews said the goal of these investments is to make the shopping experience as streamlined as possible, which may help them reach more buyers by making it simpler for customers to peruse store aisles, whether brick and mortar establishments or digitally.
"From pop-up stores to social marketing, retailers are finding innovative ways to engage and acquire new customers," Mathews explained.
Strength in retail leads to employment growth elsewhere
In the process, these expenditures have led to job openings in other industries, including commercial construction and IT, as well as manufacturing, the sector that develops the items and products consumers purchase. To make both the in-store and online shopping experience even more enjoyable, retailers are devoting their collective energies on omnichannel fulfillment services, the NRF reported. This entails hiring professionals who specialize in personalization and mobile marketing.
The symbiotic relationship between e-commerce and brick-and-mortar has retailers balancing their priorities, ensuring their physical locations don't get the short end of the attention stick. More than one-third of respondents in the NRF study said they expect to have a higher number of in-store locations by the end of 2019 than they did when the year began.
As consumers take advantage of the litany of ways they can shop, retailers will rely on current and prospective personnel to deliver on their customer satisfaction guarantee promises.