Digital and eCommerce Jobs are in High Demand
Over the course of the last few months, the digital world has become a lifeline. With strict lockdown, social distancing measures and the threat of pandemic, everything from shopping and socialising, to learning and exercising has gone online. With so much uncertainty, the internet has proven a valuable alternative to the town centre, the high street and even the corner shop.
With consumer habits changing rapidly, business, industry and services are in a race to keep up. The past few months has seen a colossal shift in the way businesses operate, with many seeing unprecedented demand for their products or services, and others left unable to adapt. For many, the race is on to stream-line, fast-track and improve their eCommerce offering.
With the coronavirus pandemic hastening the move to digital shopping, the world of eCommerce has boomed. In fact, the UK is currently experiencing the biggest boom in online retailing ever, with companies big and small making unprecedented investment in infrastructure and people in an attempt to keep up with demand.
In May, eCommerce transactions in the UK saw a 168% increase compared to the same period last year, driven in particular by rising sales of electronic items, DIY supplies, home furnishings and sportswear.
The sharp increase reflects more than three months of wide-ranging COVID-19-related restrictions for shops in the UK. Tellingly, other sectors that have seen a spike in online activity are banking (359%) finance (84%), and telco (36%), according to payments software company ACI Worldwide.
With predictions pointing to a much greater reliance on online services in the short and long-term, it’s clear that pandemic has fast-forwarded the future of eCommerce by many years.
“The lockdown has changed the way UK consumers shop, with shopping habits shifting online just as our work and social lives have,” explains Amanda Mickleburgh, director at ACI Worldwide. “More importantly, the current crisis is likely to lead to long-term behavioural change among consumers, and retailers need to adapt and change their strategies accordingly.”
UK retail eCommerce is predicted to account for 27.5% of total retail sales this year, and that proportion will approach one-third by 2024. The post-pandemic hit to physical retail will be felt far into the future. Online sales are now expected to grow from initial predictions of 11% to 19% in 2020, reaching £78.9bn; up from £66.3bn in 2019.
Predictably, online sales in other sectors have fallen, with travel bookings in May down 95% compared to May 2019. Ticketing was also down 97% and online dating fell 48% year-on-year.
Digital talent acquisition agency Beringer Tame have observed a sharp uptick in eCommerce recruitment activity, encouraging people with technical and digital marketing skills to ‘future proof’ their careers and evaluate the potential opportunities that have arisen amidst the pandemic. The ‘digital demand’, they say, has resulted in greater opportunity for those who have solid digital marketing and eCommerce skills.
CEO Patrick Tame explains: “The majority of conversations at the moment point to consumers continuing to be more reliant on eCommerce than ever before, especially as there is no real end to the pandemic in sight.”
Patrick notes that a variety of new roles and careers have been brought to the fore in recent months, such as CRM Managers, PPC & SEO experts, Email Marketing Specialists, Marketplace Managers, eCommerce Traders, Digital Analysts and Digital Marketing/Brand Managers. Similarly, the most in-demand digital tech roles are in Software Development, Programming, App & Web Development, Data Science & Analytics, Digital Product Management, UX and AI.
With the future looking more digitally enabled and reliant than ever before, the dramatic changes we see today will give way to new opportunities in the digital and eCommerce arena tomorrow.
ABL Recruitment team
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