Home industry e-commerce future development prospects companies have to go offline

Home e-commerce, logistics has always been a big problem. At the end of last year, Ali’s investment in Japan’s daily business seems to have brought some changes to the whole industry, which made the home e-commerce see hope. Before that, we also saw that companies like Melaleuca and Coolman are using their own staged success in the home market to confirm: From the current point of view, "online shopping, offline third-party distribution and installation services" The O2O model may become a standard model for the development of home e-commerce, and the online e-commerce platform will follow this already opened road.

Counting those e-commerce platforms that are still good in scale, it seems that only Taobao Tmall and JD.com have home (home improvement) channels. Even Suning Tesco, which has been working hard everywhere, has not officially launched its home channel. It can be seen that the household goods category is even more like a wolf in the eyes of these wolf-like e-commerce platforms.


E-commerce trap: online, "not come down"

“Down” is a major difficulty in the e-commerce platform home channel. Although Taobao Tmall took the lead in establishing a home improvement channel, there are also many household items in the “Double Eleven” shopping carnival with over 100 million or top brands, but the development of household items is always not smooth.

The love hive plan that tried to land in the past seems to have become a chicken rib. The Beijing love hive offline experience store, which is not done twice, is currently difficult for Tmall to find the population to be diverted to the offline line. Other cities copy. In 2013, the “Double Eleven” home improvement O2O plan was again boycotted by offline traditional shopping malls.

The online platform's efforts to seek offline entity experience seem to have an inextricable conclusion: due to the different operating costs structure between online and offline, it is difficult for online e-commerce platforms to find the “inside line” of traditional offline channels.

For example, in furniture products, the online sales price may be 1.3-1.5 times of the ex-factory price of the product, while the price of the traditional household channel is generally more than 4 times the ex-factory price, and the online sales price may only be enough to pay for the mall. rent. Under such different cost conditions, it is difficult for dealers in offline stores to cooperate with online sales to sell household goods: if sold at online prices, offline dealers cannot afford high venue rents; The price of the sale, the customer may have already escaped.

Since the road to the "down" experience does not work, then you can take the road without experience. Ali's shareholding in Haier Rishun Logistics may be one of the important strategic considerations, which is to solve the problem of how household goods come down.

At least for now, the O2O model of “online shopping, offline third-party distribution and installation services” may become a standard model for the development of home e-commerce, and the online e-commerce platform will follow this already opened road. . However, the “last mile” service of household goods requires special business skills. Haier Rishun Home Logistics relies on Haier’s original home appliance service logistics and online store resources to build a home-based online sales package almost overnight. Offline home goods distribution and installation service system.

Whether Jingdong, which has just built a home improvement channel, can rely on the existing logistics system to build a home logistics service for online sales of home furnishing products in the short term is the key to whether Jingdong can successfully develop its home improvement channel. On the one hand, building a home logistics service system that is compatible with the home goods sales line has many difficulties, and requires a lot of investment and growth cycle; on the other hand, the market capacity of 2 trillion yuan must not be handed over to competitors. Therefore, JD's actions in this regard will have a significant impact on the competition and development of online home sales.

This O2O model will also become a differentiated marketing model for the development of traditional pure online e-commerce household categories.

Today, the historical window for building a new independent home e-commerce platform has basically been closed, so it is unlikely. However, there seems to be a possibility that the vertical e-commerce platform of household goods, such as children's furniture and soft furniture. A good example is the e-commerce platform for children's homes. Because of Disney's exclusive license, the platform has room for survival and development.

As a children's furniture brand with exclusive Disney license, Coolman has experienced the process of developing from offline traditional operations to online. Founded in 2008, Cool Manju has reached more than 300 stores in 2009, with sales of more than 40 million, and has received 60 million A-round ventures. However, the popularity of venture capital has changed its business direction and focused its development on the Internet. During this period, more than 200 offline stores were closed, which is still controversial. However, the efforts of the cool development line have won the B round of 100 million yuan of venture capital.

It is worth pointing out that Coolman is not a pure online e-commerce platform, but an O2O e-commerce model with offline experience outlets. We only listed the vertical home e-commerce platform as a pure e-commerce platform. Whether the vertical e-commerce platform of other furniture categories such as software homes can survive depends on whether the platform has an effective segmentation strategy to withstand the invasion of large e-commerce platforms in the future. The effective separation strategy mentioned here, of course, also includes the establishment of an offline entity experience store system.

Looking at the future of integrated distribution from Melody

Melaleus Furniture Mall, which was launched from the Amoy brand, is an online and offline integrated distribution system developed online, so it has gone smoothly and developed rapidly. In 2012, the sales volume was about 600-800 million. In 2013, it was nearly 2 billion. It has entered the top ten Chinese furniture brands and has become a dark horse in the Chinese furniture industry.

In 2011, Melody began to open an experience store online, trying to integrate online and offline marketing models. In 2012, Melody’s offline experience stores reached 137, and in 2013 this number almost doubled. Melaleuca's experience store is generally located away from the center of the city, so the rent is relatively cheaper, and the area is only about 500 square meters. However, there are two numbers that illustrate the success of the Melaleuca integration model: First, 90% of users of the Melaleuca Experience Store come online. An important function of the Merlot Experience Store guide is to communicate with online friends who visit Melody Mall, to guide netizens to experience the store to buy furniture; second, the experience store is able to make money. Because of the unique online and offline integrated marketing model, the performance of the Melaleuca experience store can reach 15,000 per square meter, while the average efficiency of the furniture shopping mall channel is only over 2,000.

Perhaps we should understand Merrill's online and offline integrated marketing system from the perspective of consumers. Where do consumers learn about Melody? Most of them are from online marketing, and then enter the online store of Melaleuca. However, why did the consumer finally decide to purchase the furniture of Melaleuca? Basically, after seeing the real thing in Melaleuca's offline experience store, she felt reliable, satisfied and felt very cost-effective. Whether consumers are dividing the line and offline during the purchase of Melaleuca furniture should be indiscriminate and inseparable. When the consumer is experiencing the store PC terminal in Melody's offline order to purchase Melaleuca furniture in Melaleuca Mall, is he online or offline in Melaleuca? Online and offline integration is not divided Online and offline. Because consumers do not separate online and offline, the company's marketing system must also be fully integrated online and offline, in order to provide consumers with a better consumer experience.

In 2014, Melaleuca's offline experience system has a new layout, starting to open small shopping malls of 5,000 to 10,000 square meters, and accept other first-line furniture brands. This is the transition of Merlot from the product brand to the channel brand, which should be the focus of our attention.

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