Booming internet industry almost contributes as much as embattled retail sector

You’ve all see the news reports of retailers seeing a slow and steady decline in sales. Laying off staff, closing stores, and slashing prices to attract shoppers. But you’ve probably also heard the news that internet retail is bucking this trend and seeing a steady and healthy growth in recent times.

The Sydney Morning Herald contributor Ruth Williams explains in her article ‘Booming internet hits $80bn‘ the opportunities that are out there and the changing behavior of buyers.

Google Australia commissioned a recent report that shows the internet economy in Australia was worth about $50 billion in 2010 which equates to 3.6 per cent of Australia’s gross domestic product but is expected to climb to $70 billion by 2015.

Williams explains that retail sales took a higher than expected dive of 0.6 per cent in May whereas “PricewaterhouseCoopers tipped online spending to grow at least twice as fast as the total retail sector over the next four years, with online spending by Australians to jump from $13.6 billion this year – 44 per cent of which would head overseas – to $21.7 billion in 2015.”

Unfortunately though some businesses see the internet as the ‘new economy’ and like to treat it differently or see it as a threat. That’s not the right way to look at it. As Jim Collins says in his book Good to Great, there is nothing new about the new economy, making reference to earlier technology innovations such as  electricity, the telephone, and the transistor. These technologies produced new economies that reaped massive rewards for those who embraced and not feared them.

There are some things you can do to ensure you are not left behind in the ‘new economy’:

  • Get online and do it now!
  • Don’t see the internet as a ‘new’ way to do business. Treat it as natural extension of your business.
  • Embrace it in every way and ensure your entire team embraces it as well.
  • Arm yourself with the right tools. Don’t think you need to invent them as off the self solutions (like DecoNetwork) exist for this reason.
  • Engage in online communities. There are many out there such as EmbroideryStartup.com and Tshirtforums.com filled with people happy to share ideas with you.
  • Do some reading to get you up speed on the internet and what it all means. I can recommend ‘50 Ways to Make Google Love Your Website‘ as a worthwhile read to get your head around Google, SEO and promoting your business online.
  • Keep it at! We all can’t be the next Amazon or Google but that’s not what the internet is about. As with a brick and mortar business a little elbow grease and persistence will pay off.
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