E-commerce is an industry that has been continuously growing over the years, and at a fast rate. According to Statista, ecommerce sales by country shows Asia as the leader in ecommerce sales, followed by US, and Western Europe (N.A., 2020). Consumers spent $601.75 billion online with U.S. merchants in 2019, which is up 14.9% in 2018 (N.A., 2020). By the year 2021, worldwide retail ecommerce sales will reach $4.9 trillion (N.A., 2020). The constant growth of the e-commerce are a result of various trends and events serving as the driving forces for the industry. This report will outline some emerging drivers of e-commerce growthas it corelates to the e-commerce retail industry, beginning with a look at third party logistics.

Third-party logistics

Third-party logistics (3PL) refers to the outsourcing of ecommerce logistics processes, including inventory management, warehousing, and fulfillment. The supply chain integration of warehousing operations and transportation services has become what we now call third-party logistics (Burns, R., 2018).Logistics plays an integral part in the e-commerce supply chain flow and determines the overall satisfaction of the customers, efficiency and service delivery.Many online retailers find it financially feasible to outsource the logistics component of the supply chain given its complex and capital-intensive nature. In addition to the sometimes-complex nature of logistics, they can beexhaustive and often requires expertise and a multiplex network of several small systems. Growth of supply chain within the industry has occurred as a result of many of thechallenges presented. Third -party logistics within the supply chain have proven to be beneficial as companies offer storage maintenance, storage, and delivery reducing the requirement of maintaining warehouses and means of transport. Furthermore, they also reduce the risk of damage when the goods are in transit. The money and manpower saved by companies using 3PL allows efforts to be put in other places such as increasing the company’s mobile presence. 

Mobile Commerce

There has been an upward trend toward mobile e-commerce for a long time now. During today’s society, a time of ease and seamless shopping, it’s imperative to place attention on mobile sales strategies. Mobile commerce is essentially about the continuum of connectivity that customers now have available to them. Many consumers own and shop on their mobile phones, tablets, and smartwatches. Customers are becoming keener and more informed about their needs and available solutions than ever before and trusting the online retail networks with their cash. As such, the need for ease when doing shopping on the go has led to steady growth of mobile shopping. Growth in mobile online shopping has grown tenfold since 2014. As consumers become accustomed to ease of access during their shopping experience, they also expect quick services as part of their experiences. According to Google research, 53% of mobile users leave a page that takes more than three seconds to load (Moisan, J.,2020). Therefore, it has been and will continue to be beneficial for companies to adopt the latest mobile technologies and focus on this sector of their business strategy. 

Use of AI and Behavioral Data

Some of the tools that have improved as a result of increasing technological advancements is Artificial Intelligence (AI) and data analytics. AI tools have been useful as it has helped companies track the customer behavior online and lets the business determine the needs, tastes and preferences of the customer. This information can help e-commerce sites tune their offerings to match the exact needs and preferences of each customer. It has been said that quality service comes from good analysis of customer needs and delivering customer experience in company solutions. The provision of quality solutions lies in analyzing the target market and delivering solutions that exceed customer expectations. AI and other analytical tools help extract data. As such, retailers should do their best to develop insights and put their data teams to work analyzing the data available. This analyzation should interpret data provided in an effective way and furthermore see how the company can get their products in front of the right people and better serve the customer.

Increased Political Willingness 

Government control is a factor that must be considered by most industries. Especially those that operate in various countries. With the rise of e-commerce over the years, some retailers may look to utilize shoppers’ data to sell to them new data privacy legislation, which will challenge that. When it comes to online retail, there is often an argument concerning consumer privacy. Over the years there has been some resistance and controls in the e-commerce industry with governments keen at keeping the online trade under their control.Additionally, there have been some logistical challenges presented with unnecessary inspection and clearance procedures placed at the point of entry into the market.For example, among numerous other pieces of legislation in the works, there is the California Consumer Privacy Act, which could make it more challenging to acquire third-party data (Moisan, J.,2020). However, things have slowly began to change and here’s been a lowering of customs, clearance procedures and other lengthy procedures that increased the delivery time within the industry. 


Last but certainly not least is the major driving factor of technological advancements. Consumers are now on the hook as they are constantly on social media platforms. They are flooded with new information on products, business brands, news, and other subjects. There has been improvements in technological tools such as advanced customer analytics. This allows e-commerce companies to improve the level of operation of their business. Technological advancements have also helped increased range of payments and forms of payments for shoppers. There has been a worldwide expansion in online payments platforms such as PayPal, mobile phone money transfer platforms, and other online payment processing platforms for customer utilization. Additionally,there has been an increase in the use of online wallets, cryptocurrencies and other digital currencies that are making it possible to make exchanges without worrying about the extra rates and country-specific financial issues. Technological advancements have helped improve site processing and make it easier for brands to develop a better overall customer experience. The improvement of cybersecurity software has also helped monitor sites and protect customer and company information secured. 

In conclusion, each key success factor presents beneficial elements that can help improve ventures within the e-commerce industry. Some factors have progressed further and offer more benefits. Although there are more benefits than harm rendered with each factor, one should carefully consider each factor and assess how it correlates to their specific venture before applying it to their business strategy. 


Burns, R. (2018, October 20). 3PL Guide: What is Third-Party Logistics? [& How to Choose]. Retrieved October 29, 2020, from https://www.shipbob.com/blog/3pl/

Moisan, J. (2020, January 03). Council Post: Five Predictions For E-Commerce In 2020. Retrieved October 29, 2020, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesfinancecouncil/2020/01/03/five-predictions-for-e-commerce-in-2020/

N.A., The Ultimate List of Ecommerce Statistics 2020. (2020, October 12). Retrieved October 29, 2020, from https://letstalkaboutmoney.com/ecommerce-statistics/

Peter, T. (2020, October 14). The Five Drivers of E-commerce and Digital Transformation for Your Business. Retrieved October 29, 2020, from https://www.timpeter.com/blog/ecommerce-digital-transformation-drivers/

Suthar, S. (2017, October 02). 5 Things Emerging As a Driver of E-Commerce Growth. Retrieved October 29, 2020, from https://www.business2community.com/ecommerce/5-things-emerging-driver-e-commerce-growth-01927264

Visualmodo. (2019, September 11). Driving Forces Of Ecommerce And Marketing For Site Usability. Retrieved October 29, 2020, from https://medium.com/visualmodo/driving-forces-of-ecommerce-and-marketing-for-site-usability-3f038026be9c

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