Diaz: Is your business online?

Diaz: Is your business online?

The Covid-19 pandemic continues to revolutionize not just individual lives but also traditional facets of the society at large.

Prior to the onset of the global health crisis, commerce was one such facets with brick and mortar establishments dominating the novel digital enterprise.

Under the cloud of restrictions ranging from curfews, restricted movements and total lockdowns, it is the latter thriving as legacy hubs shrunk from reduced footfall by customers.

Today, while online commerce is not synonymous with the whole of retail, both e-commerce and physical retail can be seen as equals.

Even so, it is the online retail place with more room for growth as commerce sinks further into the new age.

In the last 12 months for instance, many across the world have recorded their first interaction with e-commerce, for some, a fete nearly unthought-of prior to the unprecedented crisis.

To the moon
A report by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) dubbed Covid-19 and E-Commerce lays bare the rise of the online market place in the past year.

According to the report, e-commerce as a share of global trade rose to 17 per cent last year from 14 per cent in 2019.

The UN agency expects the rise to continue even as the world embarks on a recovery path from the pandemic.

Both nascent and established e-commerce players have largely registered growth in the period as sales and revenues multiply.
Latin American based Mercado Libire for instance saw sales double between April and June last year while Africa’s retail giant Jumia posted a 50 per cent jump in transactions during the first six months of 2020.China’s online share of retail sales rose to 24.6 per cent in August last year from 19.4 per cent on 2019 while that of Kazakhstan rose to 9.4 per cent from a low 5 per cent.In Thailand, downloads of shopping applications increased by 60 per cent across a single week in March last year.According to the latest available data, e-commerce sales in 2019 topped $26.7 trillion in value having grown by four per cent from 2018.This to represent about 30 per cent, nearly one third of global GDP for the year in focus. Among global e-commerce winners by growth in gross merchandize value (GMV), last year, were Alibaba, Amazon, JD.com, Pinduoduo, Shopify, E-bay and Rakuten.Nevertheless, outfits such as Uber, Expedia, Booking Holdings and Airbnb have suffered under the slack of reduced travel during the pandemic.By country, […]

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