GEODIS and Accenture Reveal eCommerce Surge and Challenges

By Oliver Freeman
GEODIS and Accenture Research have come together to announce a study focusing on the recent ecommerce surge and the challenges it presents...

One of the leading global logistic operators, GEODIS, has teamed up with Accenture Interactive, a subsidiary of Accenture, released a new study yesterday, on October 8th, 2020. The report found that while key logistics capabilities are required to build and maintain successful ecommerce operations, very few brands have actually managed to implement them. 

200 American and European companies took part in the study; each company operates multiple channel logistics, and they were all interviewed about their ecommerce-related expectations for growing their brands’ sales. The study is a confirmation of what many of us within the industry already suspected ─ that forced lockdowns courtesy of pandemics drove the masses to ecommerce platforms to supplement their usual spending in brick and mortar outlets. 

In fact, brands now estimate that sales via ecommerce will represent nearly half of their sales in 2020, compared to just one-third before COVID-19 hit the world. 

“This study takes stock of the ambitions and concerns of European and American companies facing [a] rapid increase in ecommerce. If they want to take advantage of the rise in online sales, they must develop omnichannel logistics strategies tailored to their maturity levels,” said Marie-Christine Lombard, CEO of GEODIS.

According to the study, prior to the crisis, companies were making just 34 percent of their yearly sales through online portals (28% on average in marketplaces and 6 percent on their own websites), which increased to a staggering 65 percent during lockdown ─ split at 38 percent via marketplaces and 27 percent on the companies own website. Apparently, this was far more noticeable in European countries, where 40 percent of the brands surveyed estimate that sales lost due to COVID-19 will exceed 15 percent of their earnings on average. 

Interestingly, though, it’s not unpreparedness of online marketplaces or websites that caused the loss of potential revenue, in the eyes of 52 percent of the companies involved in the study. Instead, it was the tardiness of logistical capabilities that hindered their ecommerce potential. 

“Many brands use marketplaces as a one-stop-shop for selling their products online. This allows them to reach a wide audience and compensate for a lack of resources and logistical infrastructures, all while providing an expected customer experience,” said Sohel Aziz, managing director, Accenture Interactive.


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