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  • If you’re 30 or younger, you probably never shopped at a Sears. And if you fall in that category, you’d probably be shocked to hear that Sears was America’s largest retail company in the late 80’s.

    It’s true– just ask your parents about their experience with Sears and their face will light up as they reminisce about their first fridge or dryer.

    Since their heydays though, they’ve been on a steady (and more recently, rapid) decline. The reason… they were too slow to implement an e-commerce strategy.

    “Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future.”

    One of Sears’ most popular product lines is their Kenmore kitchen appliances. Recently, they started selling their Kenmore products on Amazon as a last ditch effort to make some extra revenue (Forbes mag writes about here). Their shares soared after the move.

    Cup your ear, and you can probably hear the shareholders collectively yelling “ABOUT DAMN TIME!”

    While it’s a good move considering their circumstance, it begs the question…

    Is it too little, too late?

    The truth is, Sears had the resources and the mountain of cash to be an e-commerce leader when stores began selling online in the late 90’s and early 00’s. They didn’t adapt, while their target customer did. This happened to Macy’s also. 

    Amazon is burying them today. Walmart is too. My prediction: Sears won’t ever be able to recover. They’ve lost too much ground. Their recent move to sell Kenmore on Amazon is them just treading water.

    Don’t be like today’s Sears

    When you’re growing your business, you should focus on an online-first strategy. That means, you have to act as of the vast majority of your interactions with the customer will happen online. Optimize your website, social media profiles, and paid channels to convert customers online.

    Maybe that conversion is a phone call that leads to a purchase. Maybe that conversion is an actual online purchase. Regardless, act like you’re an online business, even if traditionally, you’re not (ex: a pizza place, a car wash, a law firm, etc).

    It’s not just about the lowest price

    Amazon tends to have low prices, but many times, it doesn’t have the lowest prices. So why does Amazon dominate?


    We shop on Amazon because we know we’ll get a decent price, and more importantly, reliable 2-day shipping (sometimes 1-hour shipping!)… for free.

    There’s a grocery store less than a mile from my house, but I’ll STILL order chia seeds from Amazon because it’s equally as convenient.

    What can your business do?

    Make sure you have an SEO-friendly website that allows you to conduct business online. If you’re a pizza place, make sure you can take orders online. If you sell skincare products, make sure your e-commerce store is clean, fast, and easy to navigate.

    A focal point to your online business NEEDS to be convenience.

    • Consumers want to be able to order pizza online
    • Consumers want free or at least affordable shipping
    • Consumers might want to pick up in store

    Oh yeah, and make sure your prices are fair (duh) and it might not hurt to also sell on Amazon.

    Let us help you out with optimizing your e-commerce store. Reach out by visiting our contact page or calling 866-999-4736.

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