Archive for the ‘SMB Index’ Category

Using Social Media To Help Grow Your eCommerce Business

Friday, November 22nd, 2013

Posted by Laura Hills, VP Marketing, Dydacomp

multichannel order management social media Using Social Media To Help Grow Your eCommerce Business

Marketers are placing a high value on social media with 86% of marketers responding to a recent survey indicating that social media is important for their business.  This is up from 83% in 2012.  Facebook and LinkedIn are the two most important social networks for marketers and if forced to choose only one platform, 49% of marketers responded that they would select Facebook.  Despite Facebook’s popularity among the marketers surveyed, only about one in three find their Facebook efforts are effective.

In a recent survey of Dydacomp SMB retail customers, 50% of respondents indicated that social media is one of the emerging channels that they plan to leverage in 2013.

The 2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report conducted by SocialMediaExaminer.com reveals current and relevant insight to marketers as they evaluate their social media marketing efforts.  This annual survey, now in its fifth year, of 3,000 marketers seeks to understand and then share how social media is used to grow and promote a wide range of B2C and B2B businesses.  A little more than half of the respondents are self-employed or work for small businesses (2 to 10 people).  Responses are summarized and presented in easy to read and follow graphics with nearly 70 charts to visually convey the report’s findings.

Get information about social media time commitment, benefits, pitfalls and platforms that your peers and perhaps competitors are using and compare yourself against other marketers.  Are you getting the same results?  What more should you be doing?

The 2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report is a must read for anyone that needs to evaluate the commitment to social media marketing.  Click here to access this special report.

 

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As Car Sales Rise Aftermarket Auto Parts Retailers Can Benefit

Friday, November 1st, 2013

Posted by:  Laura Hills, VP, Marketing, Dydacomp

New car unit sales rose 1.5 million in August of this year, which was the highest level in more than six years and a 17% increase over August 2012.  Toyota, Ford, Nissan, Honda, Chrysler and General Motors all posted double digit gains over August 2012 and are running leaner, more cost efficient organizations contributing to greater profitability. Chrysler and GM each forecast that total U.S. sales in August ran at an annual rate above 16 million, a pace not seen since November of 2007, a month before the start of the Great Recession.

The recovery in the auto industry is not confined to a single market segment.  It is broad based and includes luxury and small car buyers, along with work truck buyers which signal increased confidence among all consumers.  A combination of factors has been cited as the impetus behind this growth including:

  • Need to replace older vehicles (average age of cars and trucks is 11.4 years)
  • Low interest rates
  • High trade-in values
  • More people are working
  • Sweet lease deals
  • New vehicle designs
  • Fuel efficient options
  • Uptick in construction raising demand for pickup trucks

Aftermarket auto parts and accessories are also experiencing significant growth, with online sales well outpacing brick and mortar sales.  Hedges & Company, a digital agency specializing in the automotive aftermarket is forecasting online sales be nearly $4.4 billion in 2013, up from a revised $3.8 billion in 2012 to grow by 15.5% from 2012.

Several auto industry trends will greatly impact the aftermarket and aftermarket retailers need to take notice.   These include:

  • Big engines in both cars and trucks remain hot.  This has always been a sweet spot for the aftermarket companies that sell parts for these large engines, including parts to improve gas mileage and should continue.
  • Two new pony cars are expected in 2014 – a new Mustang and a new Camaro, which are always popular in-demand cars.  Aftermarket parts and accessory dealers need to be ready to react quickly with new products for these vehicles.
  • New light truck and SUV registrations have shown a 10.6% increase over last year.  This definitely is good news for aftermarket parts and accessory retailers in the truck market.

Amazon sells more auto parts and accessories than any other online retailer but many retailers who started selling through eBayMotors and Amazon are now looking to drive more customers through their own websites.

Just as the automakers have retrenched and improved their operations to weather the economic storm, aftermarket retailers need to refocus their efforts to better respond to shopper demand.  Customer satisfaction basics now drive the auto industry and aftermarket retailers need to be able be equally as responsive in connecting with their target audiences.  With more online business, you need to be sure that your eCommerce operation is ready to handle all of your customers’ needs. Provide better product descriptions, be sure your online order process is easy to use, add how-to videos, live customer support and become the go-to place for aftermarket parts and accessories.

For additional information and help with growing your auto parts and accessories business, plan to attend that 2013 SEMA from November 5–November 8 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.  The SEMA Show is the premier automotive specialty products trade event drawing the industry’s brightest minds and hottest products. SEMA offers its members a variety of business tools and resources to help you make smarter business decisions and be more strategic and targeted with your promotions.  For information on the 2013 SEMA Show click here. 

For Dydacomp’s special white paper, The Keys to Drive the Business, Best Practices for Aftermarket Auto Parts Retailers, click here.

For the Associated Press article on U.S. auto sales for 2013 by Tom Krisher and Dee-Ann Durbin, click here.   (http://www.theledger.com/article/20130904/NEWS/130909697/1178?Title=Double-Digits-Automakers-Report-Big-Gains-for-August).

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Posted in CEO, Customer Satisfaction, Customer Spotlight, Dydacomp News, Ecommerce, Email Marketing, Industry News, Multichannel Order Manager, Payment Processing, PCI Compliance, Press Release, Search Marketing, Shipping, SiteLINK News, SMB Index, StoreFront.net, Support, Webinar | No Comments »

It’s time! Get Your eCommerce Site Ready for the Holidays

Friday, October 25th, 2013

Posted by: Laura Hills, VP Marketing, Dydacomp

It’s that time of year – shoppers are starting their holiday shopping earlier and earlier and retailers need to be ready with timely offers, the right amount of inventory, and sufficient staff to handle the demand and to be ready to keep up with customer demand.  For a growing number of consumers, Back to School signals the start of the holiday shopping season.


WhenConsumersBeginHolidaySeason It’s time!  Get Your eCommerce Site Ready for the Holidays

 

WhenConsumersBeginHolidaySeason 2 It’s time!  Get Your eCommerce Site Ready for the Holidays

Source: National Retail Federation (NRF) 2012
Following the lead of these early birds, well prepared retailers can begin holiday advertising and promotions to catch the almost 40% of shoppers who start shopping in September and October.  Help them to find the perfect gifts at the right prices early on.

Here are 5 Top Insights to help you prepare for the 2013 holiday shopping season.

  1. Free shipping increases online spending – but it must be managed appropriately. Take advantage of group shipping rates and “least-cost shipping” options to increase bottom line revenue.
  2. Manage stock levels to meet seasonal demand spikes and maintain inventory control. Be prepared for the Black Friday through Cyber Monday sales period.  Use last year’s sales as a benchmark for this year’s needs.
  3. Leverage best practices to ensure that you have visibility across all sales channels. Utilize cross channel online inventory control especially if you use third party eCommerce solutions and offsite fulfillment centers – have what you need so you don’t disappoint.
  4. Employ marketing and customer service approaches that work to engage and delight your shoppers. Use customer data to segment your site visitors and create targeted marketing for each segment. There’s no such thing as an over-satisfied customer.
  5. Optimize your existing operations to enable expansion into new marketplaces to uncover more buyers. Focus on the consumer experience and preferences that drive shopper’s choices. Don’t forget about Amazon, eBay and other online outlets for sales.

 

For additional information on how to be prepared for the upcoming holiday season access our on-demand webinar, “The Top 5 Insights to Help Prepare for Season and Holiday Rushes”.  You and your shoppers will be glad you did!

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Posted in CEO, Dydacomp News, Ecommerce, Email Marketing, Industry News, Multichannel Order Manager, Payment Processing, PCI Compliance, Shipping, SiteLINK News, SMB Index, StoreFront.net, Webinar | No Comments »

Book Sales Jump 51% in December According to Dydacomp’s SMB Index

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

Posted by Fred Lizza, CEO, Dydacomp

Dydacomp’s SMB Index for December has just been published in Internet Retailer. Our Index provides an indicationFredLizza 199x300 Book Sales Jump 51% in December According to Dydacomp’s SMB Index of how small to mid-sized eCommerce companies, representing more than 15 industry verticals, perform each month.  The data accounts for more than 1.7 million orders that our Multichannel Order Manager (M.O.M.) and SiteLINK eCommerce clients receive each month, resulting in more than $200 million in combined monthly retail sales.

Below are the key takeaways from our December report:

  • Dydacomp customers sold more than $300 million dollars in goods in December for the first time ever, processing over 2.4 million orders.
  • There was an 8.0% monthly increase in year over year (Y/Y) same store sales in December 2012. The growth was driven by an almost 10% increase in the average order size.  This growth is a decline in the Y/Y growth rate from November, reflecting an early surge in holiday shopping that slowed in December as consumers were impacted by domestic political uncertainty and economic news.
  • Growth leaders for the full year 2012 are consistent with prior month’s statistics, with books and sporting goods categories leading the way.
    • The growth in the books category seems to have been driven by growing interest in purchasing printed material online.  This category includes many special interest categories, such as religious publications, that are relatively new to online selling and therefore are in the rapid growth phase of development.
    • The growth in sporting goods categories peaked during the warm weather seasons as one would expect, but again is fueled by growth in specialized products that are not readily available on the more commodity sites like Amazon.
    • The nearly 50% year over year growth in December sales for the books category continued the very strong performance by this segment all year long.
    • Higher-priced categories such as jewelry and home furnishings continued to decline in both gross sales and number of transactions.  We attribute much of this weakness to fundamental economic conditions in the US.
    • The average order size increased by almost 10% in December vs. the prior year’s December, and the average order size for 2012 increased almost 5% to slightly more than $130/order.  This increase could be indicative of the return of some pricing power, and resultant price increases, to the market.

Click here to view Dydacomp’s SMB Index in Internet Retailer

 

 

Online Merchants Enjoy as 12.3% Jump in Sales in November

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

Posted by Fred Lizza, CEO, Dydacomp

Dydacomp’s SMB Index for November has just been published in Internet Retailer. Our indexFredLizza 199x300 Online Merchants Enjoy as 12.3% Jump in Sales in November provides an indication of how small to mid-sized eCommerce companies, representing more than 15 industry verticals, perform each month.

The data accounts for more than 1.7 million orders that our Multichannel Order Manager (M.O.M.) and SiteLINK eCommerce clients receive each month, resulting in more than $200 million in combined monthly retail sales.

Below are the key takeaways from our November report:

  • Dydacomp customers sold more than ¼ of a billion dollars in goods in November, processing almost 1.9 million orders.
  • 12.3% monthly increase in year over year same store sales in November 2012, roughly the same growth rate as seen in October. The growth was driven by both an increase in the number of transactions (orders) and an increase in the average order size.
  • Growth leaders are consistent with prior month’s statistics, with books and sporting goods categories leading the way, joined in November by a sizeable jump in Music/video and DVD sales.
  • The nearly 50% year over year growth in November sales for the books category was a surprising jump, although books has shown significant growth rates all year long.
  • Growth in Food and health products slowed in November as gift categories have accelerated with the holiday season.
  • Among other larger-volume categories, toys, which had been declining virtually every month in 2012, showed year-over-year growth as we enter the holiday shopping season.
  • The average order size increased by almost 8% in November to slightly more than $130/order.

We will share December and year-end wrap up numbers soon in an upcoming blog post.

Dydacomp SMB Index: Online Merchants Have Big Jump in Online Sales in October

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

Posted by Fred Lizza, CEO, Dydacomp

Dydacomp’s SMB Index for October has just been published in Internet Retailer. Our indexchart Dydacomp SMB Index: Online Merchants Have Big Jump in Online Sales in October provides an indication of how small to mid-sized eCommerce companies, representing more than 15 industry verticals, perform each month.

The data accounts for more than 1.7 million orders that our Multichannel Order Manager (M.O.M.) and SiteLINK eCommerce clients receive each month, resulting in more than $200 million in combined monthly retail sales.

Below are the key takeaways from our October report:

  • 12.2% is the highest monthly increase in year over year same store sales in 2012. Total number of transactions increased by 6.5% in October, reinforcing the healthy growth message.
  • Growth leaders are consistent with prior month’s statistics, with books and sporting goods categories leading the way.
  • Sporting Goods accelerated growth in October making it the number one vertical for the month, in terms of sales growth.
  • Food & health product sales bumped up again in October after a flat September. However, the number of orders in this category declined again in October indicating growth was largely driven by price increases.
  • Among other larger-volume categories, toys, which had been declining virtually every month in 2012, showed year-over-year growth as we enter the holiday shopping season.  In addition, auto parts regained further growth momentum in October.

The average order size increased by over 5% in October.

Dydacomp SMB Index: A 5% Jump in Web Sales for Small Retailers in September

Friday, October 12th, 2012

Posted by Fred Lizza, CEO, Dydacomp

Dydacomp’s SMB Index for September has just been published in Internet Retailer. OuriStock 000013061473XSmall 300x249 Dydacomp SMB Index: A 5% Jump in Web Sales for Small Retailers in September index provides an indication of how small to mid-sized eCommerce companies, representing more than 15 industry verticals, perform each month.

The data accounts for more than 1.7 million orders that our Multichannel Order Manager (M.O.M.) and SiteLINK eCommerce clients receive each month, resulting in more than $200 million in combined monthly retail sales.

Below are the key takeaways from our September report:

  • Our clients experienced a 5.4% increase in same-store sales vs. September 2011. Based on this increase, we’re anticipating a strong holiday season.
  • The growth leaders are consistent with prior month’s statistics with books and sporting goods categories leading the way.
  • Sporting Goods continued strong, but is slowing down from its strong summer season growth.
  • Food & health product sales were flat in September, although still up on a year-to-date basis.  The number of orders in this category declined, but was offset by an increase in average order size.
  • Among other larger-volume categories, auto parts also slowed from prior months, but still gained in September.
  • The total number of transactions increased by 2.5% in September.
  • The average order size increased by almost 3% in September.

Click here to read the full report.

Dydacomp SMB Index: Small Retailers Experience Growth in August

Friday, September 14th, 2012

Posted by Fred Lizza, CEO, Dydacomp

Our most recent Dydacomp SMB Index has been published in Internet Retailer, providing an indication ofFredLizza 199x300 Dydacomp SMB Index: Small Retailers Experience Growth in August how small to mid-sized eCommerce companies, representing more than 15 industry verticals, performed in August.

The data accounts for more than 1.7 million orders that our Multichannel Order Manager (M.O.M.) and SiteLINK eCommerce clients receive each month, resulting in more than $200 million in combined monthly retail sales.

The key takeaways from our August report include:

  • SMB retail activity for August 2012 was strong, with our Small merchants reporting a total of $217 million in sales, or a 6.2% increase in year-over-year sales.
  • Number of orders jumped slightly, showing a 2% increase.
  • Average order size increased 4% to just over $140.
  • Books and publications continued their strong growth, up over 20% in August 2012 vs. August 2011.
  • Sporting goods showed a 32% gain in sales, probably with some seasonal factors once again.
  • Food and health products, one of the largest SMB segments, was up over 7% with a majority of the increase driven by higher order values or price.
  • Clothing and apparel continued to slide, with about an 8% decrease in sales and transaction volume in August vs. the prior year, although the average order size remained steady.
  • Other declining categories included toys and home furnishings.

Click here to view the Index

 

Dydacomp SMB Index: Slow but steady increase in gross sales in July

Wednesday, August 22nd, 2012

Posted by Fred Lizza, CEO, Dydacomp

We launched the Dydacomp SMB Index through Internet Retailer to provide an indication of how small toFredLizza 199x300 Dydacomp SMB Index: Slow but steady increase in gross sales in July mid-sized eCommerce companies were performing each month based on more than 15 industry verticals.

The data accounts for more than 1.7 million orders that our Multichannel Order Manager and SiteLINK clients receive each month, resulting in more than $200 million in combined monthly retail sales.

While we believe this report can be used to determine the economic health of SMBs, the numbers are typically lower than other eCommerce figures reported in the industry because they include large online retailers. The key takeaways from our July report include:

  • Overall, gross sales from same stores/eCommerce sites increased 2.27% for the month of July 2012 vs. July 2011.
  • On a year-to-date basis, those same store/site sales are up 4% in the first seven months of 2012 vs. the same period in 2011.
  • The strongest performing industry segments in July were books/educational materials, which have been a strong performer all year. That segment was up 24% for the month of July 2012 vs. July 2011, and 23% in the first seven months of 2012 vs. the same period in 2011.  This performance follows a strong 18% growth in the June.
  • Another strong performing segment was sporting goods, up 19% for the month of July 2012 vs. July 2011, and also up 23% in the first seven months of 2012 vs. the same period in 2011.  This may be partly driven by seasonal buying, as sporting goods were up 15% in June vs. the prior year.
  • Weakest of the major categories in July was clothing/apparel, down 10% in July 2012 vs. July 2011 and toys, down almost 5% for the month of July 2012 vs. July 2011.
  • Average order size continued its slow but steady increase, growing 4.5% over the first seven months of 2012 vs. the same period last year.

To view the full report, click here.

Dydacomp and Internet Retailer Launch SMB Index for Retailers

Thursday, April 26th, 2012

Posted by: Dydacomp Staff

(Parsippany, NJ) – Dydacomp announced that it has partnered with Internet Retailer Magazine to issue a monthly index of industry trends for small to mid-sized retailers called the “Dydacomp SMB Index.” The Dydacomp SMB Index is based on Dydacomp data compiled from more than 1.7 million orders per month at more than 1,500 e-commerce operators—accounting for more than $200 million in combined monthly retail sales.

Ecommerce continues to take an important role in the retail space and is expected to grow over 15 percent in 2012 according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. With more and more small to mid-sized businesses looking to expand online to attract new buyers, trends have emerged that provide insight into consumer spending and confidence. The Dydacomp SMB Index tracks this across more than 15 product categories, including Consumer Electronics, Clothing and Sporting Goods.

The inaugural index, available online and in the print issue of Internet Retailer, uncovered interesting findings, including:

  • Consumers who shop online are placing fewer orders, but they are larger in size.
  • A slight decline in sales last month compared with March 2011 was identified, while year-to-date sales through March increased nearly four percent year over year.
  • Average order size grew in every category included in the Index except for one, Tobacco Products/Alcohol.
  • Books (which includes publications from religious organizations), Sporting Goods and Auto Parts showed strong gains, while Jewelry and Tools were weakest.

“Helping online retailers manage almost two-million orders each month, Dydacomp is uniquely positioned to gauge how small to mid-sized retailers are faring across a variety of industries and serve as an indicator of economic conditions in this market,” said Fred Lizza, CEO of Dydacomp. “By partnering with Internet Retailer, we are sharing this data on an industry-wide scale and providing insight into the growth and success of the burgeoning online small business eCommerce community so retailers and marketers alike can make better and more-informed decisions.”

The Dydacomp SMB Index will be available in Internet Retailer’s print and online editions on a monthly basis. The first Index appeared on April 11th and can be viewed in its entirety by clicking here. Retailers looking for more information on how to turn online browsing into online purchases – in any shopping category – can click here for best practices from Dydacomp.

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