“Growth Starts Here”
This is our motto and the one we displayed prominently at our booth at IRCE.
IRCE is the biggest internet retail conference out there. Anyone who is anyone in internet retail is there.
What trends did we see at IRCE this year?
1) Social Proof Companies
Social proof sells better than you can, and there are a ton of platforms out there now to help you both gather and display social proof easily on your website and across other channels. These companies had a huge presence this year at IRCE.
Here are a few social proof companies to check out:
2) Channel Diversification
We cannot tell you how many conversations we had with internet retailers that were looking to diversify their sales channels. Primarily this was centered on companies that had built their business on marketplaces like Amazon and were looking to develop their own direct channels, but also applied to ecommerce sites exploring other channels, whether that be social channels or marketplaces. This is a good shift for these businesses as it’s never good to be too dependent on a single channel…especially when that channel is one that you don’t have control over.
3) Battle of the Ecommerce Platforms
The final, and perhaps most apparent, trend this year at IRCE was the battle of the platforms. More than ever ecommerce platforms are really going at each other, competing to have the best possible platform. This is great for innovation and progress in the industry. Each platform is trying to push ahead of the competition, aiming to solve problems both on the user experience side and on the management side in order to win clients. With Shopify, Magento, Woo Commerce, and BigCommerce, to name a few, the competition was fierce at IRCE this year.
As Shopify Plus Partners, we were in Shopify’s section alongside Shopify with their other partners.
What are companies looking for in an ecommerce platform?
Companies have a variety of needs in an ecommerce platform, but what we have found is that the most competitive platforms provide a balance of two key things. The first is peace of mind, referring to the security and scalability of the platform. The second is customizability, allowing companies to customize the functionality of the platform in order to meet their unique business needs.
Traditionally, companies had to build their own ecommerce platforms in house. This made the platforms fully customizable, but also caused a lot of stress in terms of managing security and scalability. Large IT teams were hired in house to work on these platforms and the fear of having the site go down on a high traffic day like Black Friday was always a concern.
With these new hosted platforms, all of those security and scalability concerns disappear. These platforms, like Shopify and BigCommerce, allow companies to leave these worries in the past and spend more time focusing on their product and customers. However, companies do give up some level of customization, which creates a barrier for some businesses.
So, the best ecommerce platforms provide a high level of customization along with the security and scalability that companies need.
What did we release at IRCE this year?
It’s typical for all major participants at IRCE to make a big announcement or launch a new feature, so we followed suit.
At IRCE, we released our latest book in our series of Growth Guides titled “The Ecommerce Cookbook: Create Delicious Revenue Growth Online.” This book is specifically focused on the essentials that all merchants need to be doing in order to improve their ecommerce site performance.