D2C: A Look at the Rapidly Growing Market Segment and Key Enablement Strategies | HCL Technologies

Direct-to-Consumer (D2C): A Look at the Rapidly Growing Market Segment and Key Enablement Strategies

D2C or Direct to Consumer selling has been around for the last few decades. Originating around the early Dot-com bubble of the late 1990s, the model has proved immensely successful and has grown incrementally over the last two decades, alongside increasing internet penetration. Part of this growth has come at the cost of traditional retail, which has seen an equally slow but steady decline as consumers shifted from brick-and-mortar stores to online shopping. The COVID-19 pandemic has been a tipping point. The pandemic has sped up eCommerce adoption, with D2C brands snagging a significant piece of the pie, as brands accelerated the shift to digital to reach willing customers ordering out of the safety of their homes.

A rush towards retail stores marked the early stages of the pandemic, and consumers rushed to stock up on groceries and other daily essentials. However, after the initial rush, everyone stayed home and preferred to place their orders using the internet. According to surveys, it is not merely hearsay or estimations; the average value of an online purchase has increased by an astonishing 74% over the previous 16 months. Even with ongoing vaccination drives, this momentum is here to stay as customers get used to the increased comfort of placing orders without stepping out of their homes. Projected future growth for the segment is greater than 20% throughout 2022. One thing is clear, these trends won’t reverse. The marked shift in consumer behavior towards eCommerce is permanent. It means D2C is shaping up to be an essential battleground for brands to compete on, and companies that haven’t already jumped on the D2C bandwagon are at a severe disadvantage compared to their more technology-savvy competitors. Companies that already have a D2C presence must continue to upgrade it to stay ahead of the curve and deliver omnichannel, seamless, and B2C-grade customer journeys.

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