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Conventional Retailers Can Compete With Amazon Better By Combining Online And Offline Sales, Conference Panelists Say

September 15, 2013: 12:00 AM EST
Conventional retailers can compete with Amazon.com Inc. and other retailers by integrating online sales with options that only bricks-and-mortar stores can offer —store pickups, delivery, and returns. This was the main theme of online retail experts’ presentations at the Reuters Global Consumer and Retail Summit in New York. Several factors, however, are keeping most retailers from successfully implementing such an online-offline approach. These include costs associated with putting such a platform in place including expensive software for combining online and in-store inventory and retraining of employees. Although Amazon.com has had a head start in the online market, data from the U.S. Department of Commerce revealed online sales increased 18.4 percent in the second quarter of 2013. Online sales, however, accounted only for about 7 percent of total retail sales, leaving plenty of room for other retailers to catch up with the market leader.
Phil Wahba, "REUTERS SUMMIT-Retailers must work harder to merge e-commerce, stores", Reuters, September 15, 2013, © Thomson Reuters
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