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We’ve heard it time and time again, ecommerce is the future of retailing. With ecommerce sales representing 12% of global retail sales in 2018, and projected to increase to 18% by 2021, there is no doubt of the power and resiliency of digital commerce in the retailing world. The continued and unprecedented growth of ecommerce has become a catalyst for brands looking to benefit from consistent conversions and sustained growth online. It is no longer enough for companies to rely on their existing marketing, content, sales, and data teams to deliver results. Ecommerce specialists - people that have unprecedented technical, strategic and leadership skills - are needed to propel business forward.
How do ecommerce professionals differ from others in the marketplace? They have a skill set that brings together traditional business abilities with a forward-thinking approach that keeps up with consumers’ constantly changing ecommerce behaviors. Whether you are starting off your career in the field, or are a more seasoned professional trying to solidify your growth trajectory, read on to find out what makes an ecommerce executive stand out from the rest --and how they are some of the most capable employees to one day take over the C-suite.
1. Perpetually Curious Problem Solver
Working in an industry that is constantly changing means people have to be able to quickly come up with creative solutions to the changing marketplace needs and trends to deliver performance. And, because industry trends and consumer behaviors are always in flux, ensuring continuous success requires out-of-the-box thinking and innovation, or else consumers will quickly get bored and move onto the next brand. Ecommerce professionals understand this, and traditionally show an innate sense of curiosity that is fueled by the potential to leverage different tools and technologies to keep buyers engaged year-long.
2. Project Manager Looking to Continuously Optimize Processes
In a digital marketplace, there are many moving pieces that must come together to deliver a consistently engaging customer experience. From content to images, data and programming, software and pricing, an ecommerce professional is able to juggle and organize all the elements cross-functionally, and project management is an innate ability. In addition to this, because people in this line of work are also highly curious, they are able to benefit from desire to optimize processes and helping make teams more efficient - and companies more successful.
3. Market and Subject Matter Expert
Success in a digital marketplace is often characterized by superb market experience and subject matter knowledge. It’s no longer enough to just be acquainted with ecommerce trends, softwares and best practices --a true digital commerce expert will both anticipate and proactively prepare his or her brand for what’s next. That type of forward-thinking is essential, and it can only be gained with years of experience in the field, an active and perpetually curious mind, and a desire to test, iterate and explore strategies. An ecommerce specialist not only knows what is going on in the market, he or she understands the nuanced challenges that businesses need to overcome to be successful.
4. Data-Oriented Thinker Able to See All Potential Scenarios
An ecommerce leader needs to be able to analyze performance data to determine the next best actions to drive the business forward. The ability to strategically set goals based on the current market forces is critical. Leaders should be able to adopt and communicate a calculated test-and-learn approach to ecommerce success.
5. Motivated Team Leader
Finally, ecommerce professionals are leaders in their workplaces, acting as motivated and engaging team activators. Activators thrive when turning ideas into action, and can usually work with others to make things happen, by motivating them to follow a plan and deliver results. Because they are a cross between creative and analytical, they work well cross-functionally, which allows them to build a strong rapport with other teams, and their industry and market experience makes them a go-to person for those needing help or advice. These leaders are generally looked up to or well-respected in their companies, and as such would make a great addition to any C-suite.
Those who work in ecommerce have developed skills that make them versatile, flexible, adaptable, and dynamic - all of which are necessary to succeed in this ever-changing digital commerce world. If you or your company are interested in learning more about what makes someone a good ecommerce professional, or are looking to hire someone to lead your team to ecommerce success, click here to see a sample job description for the Director of Ecommerce role.
Maria is a Marketing Co-Op from Northeastern University, with a love of food, dogs, travel, and most importantly, learning about new trends in the tech space.
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