Weekend reading: 8th October

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OK guys, we’re here – Quarter Four, Golden Quarter, Peak – whatever you like to call it, it has begun. Now is the time to implement those strategies you’ve been working on! Increase your inventory, go to town on your social media posting, and handle your customer service like your business depends on it – because it does.

This week on the reads, we’re talking about how to get the best service from Chinese suppliers, forecasting wedding bells for 2022 (and why that matters), sharing about how Black Friday has become a whole two month event, reminding you why social commerce is so important, and looking at Amazon’s latest foray into the UK high street.

The latest from us

The last few weeks have been incredibly busy for the team, and we’ve been signing agreements with exciting new partners that we’re incredibly excited to be announcing soon, as well as bringing new suppliers on board.

Our newest suppliers include SaleYee, who we will talk more about in a moment, Norfolk Diamonds, a jewellery supplier with a fantastic range, as well as FaceFacts, a supplier of beauty products, and more. We’re also curating lists of products that make great gifts, so log into the Avasam home page and click the cards to find out more.

We were delighted to learn this week that Avasam has been shortlisted in two categories at the UK eCommerce Awards. As you may know, we won the award for the UK eCommerce Software or Extension of the Year for two years in a row, since the inaugural ceremony in 2019. You can view the shortlist here, and find out more here.

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The weekend reads

Due to the increases in shipping costs, it has been reported this week that many fashion retailers are changing the locations of their manufacturing plants. While we can’t see a time that production in China is likely to drop off, the current issues with shipping are definitely leading to retailers, and certainly businesses that are DropShipping, to reassess their methods. Our recent partnership with SaleYee – a Chinese wholesaler that has 16 UK distribution centres – means that retailers can source from their diverse range, without the longer delivery times. Log into the Avasam homepage and click the SaleYee card to browse their inventory and to start sourcing.

Planning ahead, with so many weddings having been put on hold through the pandemic, 2022 is set to be the year of the wedding. With that in mind, sourcing wedding supplies is likely to be a great addition to your business – and our supplier Norfolk Diamonds has some incredible jewellery that make ideal accessories for the wedding party. Log in, and click the Norfolk Diamonds card on the home page – there is up to 10% discount and free delivery on many of their range at the moment, so make the most of it.

Black Friday is coming, but as we’ve been saying recently, there is less likely to be a high demand on the Black Friday – Cyber Monday weekend this year, due to increased costs. Rather, we’re expecting demand to be a more gentle curve, peaking in mid-December. Amazon agree, and are switching tactics with Black Friday going from a single day to a full two month event! With the issues with shipping, customers are shopping earlier too, so don’t delay with diversifying your inventory.

Retailers simply can’t ignore it any longer, social commerce is here. 10% of UK shoppers have shopped on TikTok, and some businesses are seeing 50% increases in sales by going live on social media. If you’ve been delaying, now is the time to get moving with your social commerce push.

We’ve talked about the big tech companies that are online brands such as Amazon and Google launching stores and wondered if they would be the future of the high street. This week Amazon launched their first 4-star mini-department store outside of the US in Dartford’s Bluewater shopping centre – although experts and consumers are unsure of the success of the format with UK customers as yet. Whether these types of stores can revitalise, or sustain the high street remains to be seen.

Dates for your diary

Next week is another busy one for eCommerce and retail events!

Internet Retailing Expo is being held next week at the NEC in Birmingham, on 13 & 14 October. There will be a huge number of speakers, workshops and networking events to help you plan for the near future, and to go into 2022 with a bang.

Retail Week Live is also taking place next week, at Magazine London (near the O2) on 13-14 October 2021, with speakers from the likes of Tesco, Ikea, The Co-Op, and Twitch.

WIRED Smarter Retail takes place on Tuesday the 12th of October. Speakers at the event include representatives from Yoox Net a Porter, Snap Inc, and Nike, and will be uncovering the most exciting trends for the future of eCommerce. Find out more here, and register here.

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Dawn Matthews
Dawn has worked in technical and customer supporting roles for over 20 years. Most of her career was spent in technical services at top rated UK universities, which has given her a keen eye for detail. A lucky escape led her to the field of eCommerce in 2017, and she’s never looked back.Dawn studied in the field of social sciences with the Open University, achieving an MSc in Forensic Psychology at the same time as working two jobs. She regularly applies principles of psychology from her studies to her work, and outside of her role at Avasam she is busy writing her second book.Follow Dawn on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/dawn-matthews

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