Winning on Global Ecommerce, Silicon Slopes Tech Summit 2020 Recap

Pattern Data Science

February 3, 2020

We had a blast last week as a Title Sponsor at the 2020 Silicon Slopes Tech Summit. We had 1,300+ booth visitors, spent 45 volunteer hours helping Slopes Serves make over 1M meals, and had nearly 3,500 views on our LinkedIn giveaways both days.

We even had a live graffiti artist come make us a custom mural during the event. Check out these progress photos.

End of day 1:

Pattern booth at Silicon Slopes Tech Summit 2020

End of day 2, finished:

Pattern booth at Silicon Slopes Tech Summit, Day 2

Our CEO Dave Wright gave a presentation on Thursday to over 2,000 people in attendance. Read on for a small summary of his presentation.

Dave Wright speaking at Silicon Slopes Tech Summit about global ecommerce for Pattern.

Evaluating the Global Ecommerce Landscape, Winning on Amazon Alibaba and Beyond 

Ecommerce is scooping up more and more of the global retail sales, with no signs of slowing down. Ecommerce currently represents 13% of total retail sales, and for every 1% increase in that number, around 8,500 retail stores will close. 

So how do you move the needle in the ecommerce field and stand out from the competition? Dave spoke to a full theater on Thursday afternoon about global ecommerce and what it takes to get ahead.

Ecommerce equation for success

The equation for ecommerce success is pretty simple: Revenue = traffic x conversion x basket size (price) / repeat for lifetime value of customer. 

equation for ecommerce success

Of course, all that’s easier said than done. Some brands really excel at the traffic part, others at the conversion part, and still others dominate on increasing basket size. 

For example, Dollar Shave Club gained 76,000 subscriptions from this viral video alone. Talk about increasing traffic. Then Purple mattresses went from making 3-5 million sales to 300 million in just a few years. At one time, their Goldilocks video was the highest converting video on YouTube. Then there’s Delta, who we all know are experts are increasing basket size by offering add-ons to your flight. 

Don’t miss out on China

Dave explained how brands in the U.S. focus almost entirely on Amazon. However, the truth is that the global opportunity is massive. For example, Amazon did $9 billion in sales on Cyber Monday last year, while Alibaba did $38 billion for Singles Day. 

China is lightyears ahead of the U.S. in terms of customer service and speedy shipping. For example, Dave said JD.com in China has 6-hour shipping across 99% of China. That gives a whole new perspective to Amazon's "speedy" 2-day shipping.

Marketplaces to watch for

There’s tons of competition for the brands out there, Dave explained. And right now, it’s true that many retail stores hold much of the weight. But will it always be that way? Consumers are looking for good prices, and they can usually find better prices online. 

Here are just a few of the domestic marketplaces Dave mentioned to watch out for and the advantage they have in the playing field:

  • eBay—Focused on price.

  • Walmart—Focused on grocery on ecommerce; has 2700 pickup locations; 90% of U.S. residents live within 10 miles of a Walmart.

  • Amazon—They’re going after everything fashion; they recently put out a patent for a virtual mirror to let you try on clothes.

  • Target—Seen as a high-end alternative to Walmart; has great brand equity with shoppers. 

  • Alibaba—Currently has 58% ecom share in China (which is much larger than Amazon’s share in the U.S.).

  • MercadoLibre—Currently winning ecommerce in Mexico; has the large advantage in all of South America; knows the local nuances of what appeals to Latin Americans.

  • Google Shopping—Has vast resources; they don’t want to become another Baidu; Google has a pretty well organized machine about where they’re going next with Google Shopping; 6 months ago they cleared their first billion in sales.

  • JD.com—Offers 6-hour delivery 99% of China.

Pattern employees talk to booth-goers about global ecommerce at the SSTS 2020.

The executive dilemma

As we’ve just explored, global ecommerce is massive. The opportunities for brands are there! However, brands run into a problem: they only have between 1 and 3 ecommerce people who are supposed to tackle not only a D2C site with 3PL, logistics, Google SEO and everything else, but also Amazon, eBay, AND start going international. 

Frankly, it’s too much for one or two or even three people. 

“When companies are huge, it doesn’t mean that they’re ecommerce help is any bigger,” Dave said.

Silicon Slopes, global ecommerce Pattern

Pretty soon you start seeing this dilemma. What the executive team is asking their small ecom teams to do is virtually impossible.

Enter Pattern. We don’t charge brands anything for our services because we buy product up front, generally at a higher margin than wholesale, and then sell it ourselves. 

So how do you know if it’s worth it to you? It all comes down to math, Dave said. Here’s the equation brands can use to figure it out: Priority multiplier = present value revenue / present value investment (percent confidence).

How to win on Amazon

Global ecommerce may be important, but that doesn't take away Amazon's importance in the U.S. Dave spoke how the same principles above apply—traffic and conversion drive sales. 

Here are a few quick tips Dave shared:

  • If you have a quality product, you can win.

  • Look for advertising bid adjacencies with advertising technology, like Pattern’s Predict software. (e.g. bids for “fish oil” are $11, but bids for “fish oil supplements” are just 22 cents.)

  • Use product destiny calculations. We use these to decide what the destiny of a product is based on math. Once you decide what that is, you can stop spending money on it. 

  • Get creative right, and it’s essentially giving you free money. Our brand partner, Emerald Labs, had a 78% increase in conversion after our content update.

  • Use bundles and Subscribe & Save to increase basket size at checkout.

  • Uphold MAP. Some brands care more about price than they do about all the rest. Upholding MAP is a solvable problem, you just have to invest time and money to getting it done.

  • Improve customer reviews. For example, in China, 80% of shoppers reach out to customer service before a purchase, and 50% reach out after a purchase. You’ve got to have a viable customer service team in place (and especially a local one in China if you’re selling there). 

To win on D2C or not to win?

Winning on a D2C site is pretty similar to winning on marketplaces, Dave said. Having high quality images, product descriptions, and quick delivery are all essential. However, Pattern recently did a D2C Analysis of the top 100 D2C sites to see how good they are at running D2C. Turns out, not many are even getting the basics right.

Here’s what we found:

  • Only 35% had high quality images.

  • Only 75% detailed product descriptions.

  • 29% had no delivery info on the listing.

  • Only 15% provided an exact delivery time at checkout (Amazon, on the other hand, gives customers the exact arrival time).

  • Customer service was either really good or terrible. 

  • Only 27% had free shipping, 60% had free shipping with a caveat. (Amazon and the marketplaces are dominating because of free shipping.)

global ecommerce at silicon slopes tech summit 2020

In summary, selling on Amazon is a linchpin in the U.S. Then you’ve got to nail the D2C, and start thinking about China. The future of ecommerce is yet to be set in stone, but you’ve got to know the global market to be a key player, and winning often comes down to doing the math to get it right for your brand.

Learn more about how Pattern helps brands excel on global ecommerce by reaching out to us at the form below.

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Sept 27, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 27th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon drives renewable energy push with 71 new projects Amazon is planning to add 2.7 gigawatts of clean energy capacity through a couple of new projects as the company attempts to use 100% renewable energy by 2025. The ecommerce business will soon have a total of 329 renewable energy projects, generating 50,000 gigawatt hours of clean energy, which is equivalent to powering 4.6 million US homes every year. [Read more on Reuters](https://www.reuters.com/business/sustainable-business/amazon-drives-renewable-energy-push-with-71-new-projects-2022-09-21/) Amazon launches Prime Early Access Sale Amazon is launching a new 2-day shopping event for its Prime members only, beginning on the 11th of October. Across 15 countries, Prime customers will have access to the shopping event, with thousands of deals on offer globall, ranging from fashion to electronics to essentials. The event has the purpose of giving Prime users the chance to spread the cost of items over the winter months, 6 weeks ahead of Black Friday. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/26/prime-early-access-sale/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Shopify unveils new localisation tool Shopify is launching a new localisation tool, called Translate & Adapt, which works with Shopify Markets to offer localisation for sellers who are looking to expand into new markets. The tool translates a user’s online store into different languages, including product pages and information pages. Merchants are also able to create different shipping terms for each market using the new tool, which allows international expansion and offers a more localised consumer experience, unveiling new potential. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/shopify-launches-new-localisation-tool/) Etsy is set to invest hundreds of millions into its marketing platform Etsy CEO claims that the company is on route to spend more than $570 million USD on marketing this year. Even during a time of macroeconomic pressure, inflation and rising interest rates, the company is preparing itself and its sellers for the upcoming holiday season and is focused on retaining interest from buyers. [Read more on Yahoo News](https://uk.news.yahoo.com/etsy-600-million-on-marketing-ceo-154054219.html) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Meta looks to cut costs by 10% in the coming months Meta employees are facing job redundancies as the company plans to cut its costs by 10% over the next few months. Meta reported a 22% YoY increase in costs and expenses, totalling over $20 billion USD. The cuts are expected to come in the form of job redundancies as a result of department reorganisations rather than formal layoffs. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/22/meta-to-slash-costs-by-10-over-coming-months/) DHL teams up with Quadient to offer smart locker deliveries in the UK DHL and tech company, Quadient, have partnered to offer smart lockers parcel pick-up throughout the UK. The new contactless, secure locker stations will give recipients more choice and flexibility to receive their parcels at a time and location best suited to them. The partnership plans to install 500 locker stations across the country by the end of 2022. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/21/dhl-partners-with-quadient-to-offer-smart-locker-delivery/) The online fashion market is set to be worth nearly $170 billion USD in 2025 The European online fashion retail market is set to grow 50% by 2025, with an online turnover of $170 billion USD, which is 33% of the retail branch’s total. Cross-border marketplaces prove to be the largest drivers of this growth, with online websites and apps like Vinted largely pushing the market’s online growth. Zalando recently became the largest cross-border fashion retailer/marketplace, responsible for 11.7% of the online market’s share. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/online-fashion-market-worth-e175-billion-in-2025/)
Sept 22, 2022

How an Amazon SEO Agency Should Be Serving Your Brand

If you’re in the global ecommerce space, you are most likely aware of Amazon, and probably selling your products on the marketplace. With over $470 billion in sales in 2021 alone, Amazon stands as the third largest company in the world based on revenue. The ecommerce giant is a household name in the U.S. and working hard to grow its market share across five continents worldwide.

Having your products available on Amazon and being competitive there, though, are definitely two different things. If you want to really succeed on Amazon, you’ll need specialized insight into how Amazon works and how to make it work for you. So, for many brands, it’s a great idea to work with an Amazon Search Engine Optimization (SEO) agency.

At Pattern, Amazon SEO optimization service is one of our key competencies. We understand that technology, data-driven insights and expertise  are the most important tools brands can leverage to win top listing spots on digital marketplaces. With expert teams and years of experience, we help brands conquer the Profitability Death Spiral as they compete with other products and sellers online. We offer Amazon SEO agency services as a core solution to brands that need more resources to get ahead. 

What is an Amazon SEO Agency?

An Amazon SEO agency serves brands by improving their products’ rank and listing performance on Amazon. They make strategic decisions about ad spending and placement that lead to higher traffic, conversions, and revenue for ecommerce brands.

A great Amazon SEO Agency partner will:

Prioritize Your Success

Unfortunately, many Amazon SEO agencies profit in unfair ways from your brands’ perceived success based on the ROAS numbers they provide. This is done through including branded search terms in ROAS reports, which naturally skew listing performance

Let’s say, for instance, your brand is called “Annie’s” and you sell lollipops. Your brand has a very high likelihood of winning the top listing spots on Amazon for lollipop search terms that are paired with “Annie’s,” your brand name. So, SEO agencies will spend your ad money on those terms and report a very high ROAS. 

To avoid scenarios like these, it’s best to look for an agency that either calculates their profits on metrics other than your ROAS scores or weighs branded search terms differently in the performance metrics reports. Regardless of your Amazon SEO agency’s cost structure, you should align onbranded search terms before committing to a scope of work.

Provide Detailed Competitive Insight

A great indicator of a high-quality Amazon SEO agency is the level of insight they can provide into your competitors’ listing positioning and how it compares to yours. Data fanaticism is so important at Pattern that we’ve developed proprietary technology to display this exact information with precise detail for every brand we work with. In fact, you can find our free version here to see how you compare to some of your top competitors based on ASIN.

It’s certainly possible to improve your Amazon search performance with blind spending strategies. But a truly great solution will help you to know where your dollars are at their most powerful and competitive.

Reduce Your Ad Spend Over Time

Amazon’s A10 algorithm prioritizes customer satisfaction—it wants to show consumers the best products that align with their search intent to improve conversions and sales. So, the best way to gain momentum on Amazon is to work on incremental wins. 

Improving your performance on more obscure search terms that align with your customers’ search intent is a great way to increase ROAS for the long term. A10 will reward your success with better rankings on higher-volume search terms and the virtuous cycle can help you conquer your most-coveted listing spots. And the best part? This process of gaining momentum, if done right, will naturally decrease your ad spend over time as Amazon recognizes your value and works with you to keep your products at the top of consumers’ search results.

Amazon SEO Optimization and More

As an Amazon SEO specialist, Pattern knows how to help your brand win better success for long-term profitability on Amazon. With our data-driven tools and brilliant teams of ecommerce experts, we help brands with listing management, content optimization, Amazon ad strategies, and more.

Contact us to learn more about our SEO optimization services.

Sept 20, 2022

4 Ecommerce Marketplace Consultant Must-Haves

Entering the ecommerce landscape is a huge undertaking for any brand—it usually requires a large investment in resources and expertise to really be successful. Any brand can quickly get in over their heads trying to navigate the nuances of SEO, fulfillment and logistics, distribution control, listing optimization, and meeting the numerous other requirements and administrative tasks to show up well on marketplaces. 

Unfortunately, because it’s so easy for third party, gray market, and unauthorized sellers to obtain and sell products online, many brands find themselves pressured to execute an ecommerce plan without the right resources to succeed on marketplaces and their other channels.

So, for brands looking to enter the ecommerce space or improve their current and future performance, it makes sense to partner with an ecommerce consultant.

Pattern’s global presence and proven success with hundreds of brands has allowed us to develop highly effective ecommerce consulting services. We can guide your brand to navigate issues both large and small in marketplaces worldwide. To maximize your ecommerce efforts, you’ll need to understand what an ecommerce consultant does and how to select one who drives the right value for your brand and products. 

What is an Ecommerce Consultant?

An ecommerce consultant is a specialist in the ecommerce space who can give you personalized guidance on how to market your products and grow their presence on digital marketplaces.

An ecommerce consultant should be able to analyze your brand, audience, category, opportunity, and current roadblocks and help you understand how to utilize your resources (or what resources are missing) to be most effective in capturing your opportunities in the ecommerce space.

Not sure how to evaluate a consultant? Here are 4 key attributes to look for as you make your choice.

1. Brand Obsession/Specialization/Passion

At Pattern, we prioritize brand obsession for a reason—we know that a brand-centered mindset makes a crucial difference in the outcomes and results our partners achieve. So in our experience, when you begin your search for an ecommerce consultant, it’s important to look for a partner who is specialized in ecommerce, invested in the product, and passionate about helping brands build and improve their strategies. Typically, this means finding someone that consults exclusively for ecommerce marketplaces, rather than choosing a consultant who offers many different services. 

2. Proven Results

It’s also important to avoid choosing a consulting partner who can’t deliver the right experience for your brand. The best indication of whether your potential consultant can do that is to review their history, data, and results with other brands. Ask if they’ve helped others in your selling category, if they’ve solved specific issues your brand is facing, and why they feel you are a good fit. The key is to leave the conversation feeling confident that you understand your consultants’ capabilities and whether or not they match up with your needs.

3. Wide Range of Marketplace Expertise

It’s best to pick a consultant who knows how to guide a brand onto and through multiple marketplaces worldwide. You’ll want to take a look at your long-term strategy and think about the regions and platforms you’re currently on and where you might want to take your brand in the future. If your consultant is truly great at what they do, they’ll be able to help you perform well enough with your current product roadmap that it’ll be a no-brainer to expand your presence at the right time.

4. Network of Resources

The most effective partnership with an ecommerce consultant will be able to give you both recommendations and point you to solutions for making those changes in your planning, processes, and execution. Your time and money is valuable, so you want to make sure that you’re spending it as efficiently as possible as you follow your consultant’s advice. So, before you commit to an ecommerce consultant, ask about the resources and concrete solutions they typically recommend to the brands they work with.

Achieve Your Ecommerce Goals With Pattern

Finding an ecommerce consultant that checks the boxes can be a difficult task. At Pattern, our entire focus and drive centers around giving brands the tools and resources they need to succeed on domestic and international ecommerce marketplaces. 

With over 100 global ecommerce consultants across 10 global offices, we have the right tools to partner with brands across the world to achieve better ecommerce success. We give specialized advice, then make sure our partners have all the adequate SEO, social media, CRM, Amazon multi-channel fulfillment services, and ecommerce outsourcing services they need.

Interested in ecommerce consulting services? Set up a call here to learn what Pattern can do for your brand on global marketplaces.