Welcome to Talking Shop – a brand new series on the Kooomo blog (cue fanfare and fireworks sound effects…) We’ll be giving you short and snappy recaps of the biggest eCommerce news stories to hit the headlines (because who has time to trawl through dozens of articles when you could get everything you need in one tidy little package?!) Who are the biggest movers and shakers in online retail? What are the newest trends that are emerging? What do retailers need to be watching out for? We’ve got you covered. Are you as excited as we are?! Great. Let’s begin.
Less than 25% of US firms believe they’ll meet the GDPR deadline

The lowdown: With just one month to go until GDPR compliance day on May 25th, a survey conducted by NetApp has revealed that only 23.6% of US companies don’t have any concerns about meeting the deadline. The survey also firmly put a spotlight on the lack of knowledge around data, with a whopping 40% of global businesses admitting to not knowing where their data is stored.

So it sounds like there’s still a mountain to climb for businesses to cross the GDPR finish line. However, 30 days is still plenty of time to get your data in check. If you’re still unsure of what boxes need to be ticked for your online brand, download our free GDPR checklist here.  
Overtaking Amazon – Alibaba is officially the world’s most popular eCommerce website

The lowdown: Alibaba is officially the world’s most visited eCommerce website, with Taobao.com knocking Amazon off the number 10 spot on Alexa’s Top 500 sites on the webreport for April. Alibaba’s apps got in on a slice of the action too, with AliExpress securing 9th place on the most downloaded mobile app list for April across all stores. 

Will Amazon regain its position within the top 10 list for May, or will Alibaba continue to climb up the ranks? Watch this space…

What the doctor ordered: Pharma eCommerce set to boom in Europe

The lowdown: Buying medicine online is set to soon become the norm, according to ResearchAndMarkets.com’s latest report. The pharma e-commerce market in Europe is forecast to grow by 13.8% between now and 2022. This gives key players such as Lloyds Pharmacy, Walgreens, and Boots the edge as convenience is increasingly becomes the driving force for consumers when purchasing medication.

Opportunity never comes without its challenges, and in this case the main threat is the trading of illegal and counterfeit trading of drugs through e-pharmacy. That in itself raises the question – will new regulations need to come into effect to protect the sales of pharmaceuticals online? With GDPR, EU Digital Tax, and Geo-blocking all dominating the European digital landscape in recent months, this could certainly be one to watch.

$1.3 trillion of all retail sales in the US will be impacted by smartphones in 2018

The lowdown: A report released by Forrester has revealed that over half of the US retail market will be driven through digital touchpoints by December. One of the biggest reasons for this is that consumers feel that the product information that’s available online is more valuable that what they find in-store. Retailers are adopting an omnichannel approach to their eCommerce strategy now more than ever. This means synchronising all stock in order to offer customers more options like click and collect, as well as buy online and return in-store. What retailers can’t forget however, is the importance of fully-trained and knowledgeable staff to successfully bridge the gap between technology and customers. 

Clearly, there’s an enormous opportunity for online brands to up the ante when it comes to optimising mobile to increase conversions. Find out the top 5 reasons why your customers aren’t buying on mobile. 

So there you have it – the latest and greatest eCommerce news stories in a nutshell. And if that’s not enough scoop for you, don’t forget to follow Kooomo on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn for industry updates on the daily!