Sophisticated omnichannel businesses already know: the age of single-channel sales are well behind us. With constantly evolving trends, strategies, and best practices, it’s more important than ever before that businesses stay agile to change — including being able to adopt new sales channels quickly and embed them seamlessly into the broader technology stack.
In the West, 2017’s headline-maker was definitely Amazon. From the launch of Amazon Alexa Smart Speakers, to the fervor surrounding the still yet-to-be-decided location for Amazon HQ2, the message was clear that Amazon is not only a force to be reckoned with, but that retailers could no longer ignore the huge market that Amazon potentially represented to them.
But sometimes it’s easy to forget that there’s a much bigger world beyond our doorsteps. In the East, Alibaba is the news-maker, and word is beginning to reach Western retailers’ ears. Cutting-edge early adopters are already onboarding the channel, and our prediction is that more and more businesses will start to explore Alibaba’s potential in 2018 and beyond.
If your business is considering Amazon, Alibaba, or possibly both, then a good place to start is first introducing yourself to the differences between the two marketplaces. The infographic below encapsulates a high-level introduction to Amazon and Alibaba in a one-to-one comparison model. But before you adopt either channel, take a moment to evaluate your business’ ability to respond with agility to market changes like the rise of Alibaba in the West. Does your strategy allow for quick changes, or are changes cumbersome and costly? Check out this video and presentation to see how one company’s integration strategy impacted their ability to quickly adjust to change.