Cyber Monday & The Power of Mobile Commerce

According to PFSWeb, Cyber Monday 2015 continued to display the increasing power of mobile sales on the now $3 billion and biggest U.S. online shopping day of the year.

Digital sales across all devices were up 21% to $3.1B, with a 12% increase in desktop and an amazing 53% increase in mobile sales
Number of orders placed by China increased 78%

The average Cyber Monday conversion rate was up a full percentage point to 5.37% and the conversion rates were highest from 9-10pm ET.
Out of stock product rates were more than double the normal rate during Cyber Monday 2015

Think about that last point for a minute. What did it cost these companies in proift by miscalculating the opportunity? In a recent whitepaper from RSR Research, Retail Supply Chain Execution: New Requirements To Meet New Demand, Brian Kilcourse and Steve Rowen, Accurate inventory is identified in other RSR studies as the single most important prerequisite for profitable omni-channel order fulfilment.
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RSR respondents were mostly concerned about the following operational challenges around supply chain execution:

The volume of returns is increasing as result of consumer omni-channel purchases
Marketing promotions cause unintended consequences on supply chain
Our stores were not designed for current projected/volume of omni-channel order fulfilment
The overarching opportunity for retailers is to figure out how to offer new order and fulfilment options to consumers and still be profitable.

If the retail industry isn’t stressed enough, last week The Seattle Times reported that Amazon was in talks to lease 20 cargo planes to build its own overnight-air-logistics operations. According to the article, Amazon could turn its in-house logistics network into a business in the same way that it grew Amazon Web Services,” to pull in $8 billion in revenue this year.

It will be Christmas this Friday. It will be very interesting to see how this digital retail holiday (and the days surrounding it) will complete 2015 and continue to evolve in the coming years.

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