Amid Growing Complexity, 80% of Ecommerce Brands Are Seeking Actionable AI Insights & Automation, New Tradeswell Report Shows

As brands shift to selling on multiple marketplaces, 7 out of 10 professionals say they are overwhelmed by complexity of ecommerce tools and lack access to unified data to make informed decisions

 Tradeswell, the first operating system for real-time commerce, today released its ecommerce data report and white paper, The Future of Empowered Ecommerce. The report is based on a survey of 300 ecommerce professionals and surfaces the key challenges they face today, including lack of unified and harmonized data, poor access to technology-powered decision-making, and the tradeoff between top-line growth and bottom-line profits.

The Future of Empowered Ecommerce is designed to aid DTC and CPG brands as they adjust their strategies to manage the growing complexity of being truly omnichannel, as more U.S. consumers shift to buying products online, a trend which was accelerated by more than two years due to the pandemic.

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Data, Data, Everywhere: The thirst for unified data and automated actions

As the ecommerce industry has grown, so has the number of tools and services from third-party providers, aimed at helping brands gain insights from their marketplace data. However, 70% of those surveyed claim they have data coming in from too many sources, while others claim they still don’t have enough.

Don Brett, Global Chief Digital Officer of NBG Home, noted the need for unified data and AI-driven automation: “For me, part of the value is a single source of truth for ecommerce. We need that connective tissue – a technology that connects and automates sales, the supply chain and finance.”

Merging of Human and AI: Leveraging technology to make smarter, faster decisions

Overall, the #1 challenge brands face today is adapting to a constantly changing environment. The pandemic ravaged the global supply chain, and it continues to be a major obstacle for all brands. Inventory management and forecasting during changing market conditions are also top of mind, as well as accounting for variables such as advertising and promotions. Most cannot always see how the business is performing in real-time, which is a frightening prospect in such a quickly moving environment where decisions equal dollars won or lost.

“Very few people truly understand [ecommerce], and what makes them really nervous is the speed at which it evolves,” said Joe Masciantonio, Chief Customer/Revenue Officer of JOCKO FUEL and Origin Maine. “If you’re not looking at your stuff daily on Amazon, your whole world can turn overnight. You can’t run ecommerce brands with people; you have to combat technology with technology. Brands that are operating without the true technology to keep up with the pace of the platform are falling behind.”

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Growth vs. Profit: The omnichannel challenge 

The vast majority (95%) of businesses now sell on more than one online marketplace. And, while many note that the online marketplace model is not easy for brands (i.e., competitive pricing and excessive fees that can eat into margins), their presence on those marketplaces is evidence that the challenges are well worth navigating given the access to the (now nearly insatiable) consumer buying behavior that is fueling marketplace growth.

When it comes to growth vs. profitability, ecommerce professionals appear split on which is more important. And a clear majority (54%) of them agree that balancing both is difficult.

“Brands shouldn’t have to choose between revenue growth and profits,” said Paul Palmieri, CEO and co-founder of Tradeswell. “With the right technology in place that unifies data across all functions, provides real-time insights for decision-making and automates actions, there’s no tradeoff – they can do both. Our goal is to help brands achieve healthy growth and marketplace profitability, so they can win in competitive environments like Amazon.”

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