Mid-market eCommerce retailers and brands must differentiate in order to survive against the considerable might of Amazon, Alibaba and eBay. This was the urgent message from Patrick Wall, founder and director of MetaPack, in his keynote speech at The Delivery Conference in London yesterday.
Opening the event, which was attended by over 1,200 delegates from the retail, brand and carrier industries, Patrick Wall said that the three main marketplaces were predicted to dominate up to 40% of the eCommerce market by 2020.
“The only way retailers and brands can avoid the dangerous middle ground in the eCommerce sector is to drive a distinct proposition,” he said. “This can be based on cost, or differentiation based on specialisation, range authority, brand loyalty, design or experience.”
Sir Ian Cheshire, Chairman of Debenhams, agreed: “Amazon looms extremely large in our market by thinking differently and driving change. They are a player with a commitment to innovation which is quite extraordinary, and as retailers we have to add value and work out where to focus, where to invest and where to be flexible.”
The winners of the Delivery Excellence Awards were also announced at The Delivery Conference. In the ‘eCommerce Retailers’ category ASOS won Best Use of Innovation and PrettyLittleThing was awarded Best Domestic or International Delivery Options. In the ‘eCommerce Delivery Partners’ category, ReBOUND won Best Use of Returns and On the Dot was awarded Best Use of Innovation, whilst CollectPlus received the Best Customer Experience award. Finally, in the ‘eCommerce’ category, Best Newcomer was awarded to BeautyBay.
The event played host to a roster of high calibre speakers from key retailers and brands and from carrier organisations. In addition, delegates had the opportunity to see new solutions displayed by 33 sponsors and exhibitors, and to take part in the many networking opportunities.