eCommerce’s Cambrian Explosion


When historians and economists look back on the evolution of online merchandise sales, 2019 will mark the beginning of a new era of prodigious growth, The Brandian Explosion.

The Spark: Native Shopping Carts Become Ubiquitous

The days of 90%+ purchasing decisions originating online with 85%+ transacting offline are over. Driven by Google, Facebook and Instagram’s desire to own the buying experience, online sales will sky-rocket as discovery and consumption are merged online. The global #1, #3 and #6 most trafficked sites adding marketplaces signals a shift sure to extend to other platforms. Imagine every site or app on your phone with merchandise sales and a native shopping cart. Spotify selling the best headphones for your music tastes, Strava promoting athletic equipment, Netflix showcasing the brands from your favorite shows… the use cases are limitless.

The Fuel: Brand Adoption Accelerates

We can reasonably predict what happens next by applying the digital transformation of verticals like books, music and entertainment. When consumer behavior shifts, brands follow. As evidenced by a single brand among the top 100 Amazon sellers, brands have largely remained on the sidelines allowing intermediaries to manage their online sales. This low penetration equates to a massive opportunity for brands of all sizes and types.

The Result: Brandian Explosion

Digital distribution platforms will enable brands and consumers to transact at a scale currently unimaginable. Online consumption will flourish giving rise to a multitude of new players. Eventually, multi-tier physical distribution will be replaced by direct digital distribution as the third industrial revolution materializes.



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