New Retail Strategy: Alibaba

Source: WSJ

Online transactions from Alibaba, a Chinese e-commerce business, was reported to have totaled more than eBay and Amazon combined. However, its fast and widespread reach and lead their e-commerce strategy into maturity, prompting a new one: “New Retail” strategy – combining both online and offline locations.

The “New Retail” strategy is an ecosystem of digital services which aims to have no distinction between online and offline shopping, that is by digitalising traditional retail shops. They have enhanced customer experience through implementing augmented reality, AI and facial recognition.

‘How?’, you ask? Watch this short video on “Alibaba’s New Retail Strategy” that explains it all:

 

With New Retail Strategy, consumers are better targeted, understood and served online and offline. A personalised recommendations and precise search results would increase customer satisfaction and purchases, decrease product returns and reduce cognitive dissonance. Consumers could also shop anywhere, anytime.

This means that it is of increasing importance for brands to encourage webrooming and showrooming behaviour by having its stores integrated and creating a indistinguishable experience by being seamless.

This puts pressure on the retail industry to invest in more innovative technologies that would better serve customers and providing them a delightful experience. It is important for companies to focus on the customer journey as consumers now are purchasing based on these experiences rather than the product itself.

With technology, they also need to ensure that technical support and update is prompt, reducing technical downtime that would backfire from its intended goal.

As Alibaba makes its way into Australia, what suggestions would you provide to help them ensure its survival?

-E.

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8 thoughts on “New Retail Strategy: Alibaba

    1. Thank you for your comment, Kristel. I would suggest Alibaba to understand its market such as culture and preferences, increasing adaptability. As mentioned in my previous post, Uber failed to adapt to the South East Asian market and it became one of the biggest reasons of its downfall. From a digital marketing standpoint, it is important to consider the type of digital marketing that the market would be exposed and receptive to. This could be done by analysing customer journey and gathering new data of the market to make more insightful and accurate personalised recommendations through a digital platform most frequently used in that market.

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  1. The New Retail Strategy definitely appears to be blurring the lines between online and offline shopping experiences which are usually viewed as quite distinct entities. It looks as though this would give customers a more integrative and personalised shopping experience which I think is something we all look for as consumers. It would be interesting to see how this translates into the Australian market and whether or not it becomes a successful venture. A really great read, Elaine!

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    1. Thank you for your comment! I agree! With increasing consumer power and how personalised and instantaneous shopping experience has now become, I believe to keep up with technology, Australian companies should start digitalising their brick and mortar shops as well. It could begin as simple as using a digital wallet. This is so that digital disruptions don’t shock the market, causing many traditional shops to fall behind and potentially losing out in profits.

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    1. Thank you for your comment! It would be very intriguing. I believe it will definitely cause a shock to the market with its very advanced technology and might even take some time for consumers to get used to. However, I also think that Alibaba would need to be wary and adapt to the Australian market appropriately, such as Australians’ behaviours and preferences.

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    1. Thanks for your comment! I am curious too. I feel that the main thing for Alibaba to do while entering Australian markets is to appropriately adapt to its demographics, behaviour and preferences to be successful.

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