Remember the telex machine and how important it once was for communicating efficiently with people worldwide? Then the fax machine came into play. Next was email and now Skype. When I look at these advancements, I am stunned and, at the same time, ecstatic because they are so cool. Recently, I’ve been studying other brisk developments online, such as the explosive growth of e-commerce. When I gaze into the crystal ball of e-retailing, here’s what I see: We will be able to buy from anyone, anywhere in the world online directly. Retailers listen up.
Instead of walking into a Best Buy to purchase an electronic gadget or buying it online, you’ll be able to skip Best Buy entirely and purchase that very same type of product directly from a manufacturer who makes it – regardless of where they are located – and without the fat profit margins that the Best Buys or Targets of the world tack on. No middleman will be required.
Case in point. Ever hear of LightInTheBox (www.lightinthebox.com)? It’s a China-based global online shopping company that has more than three million Likes on its Facebook Page (https://www.facebook.com/lightinthebox). Here’s a look at some of its online offerings:
• Your dream wedding dress for as low as $99.
• Flash Sale – Deal of the Day Where You Save 70%!
For example, buy a women’s casual elastic fitted pencil dress for as low as $9.99.
• Men’s outer clothing starting at $26.99
• Cameras Accessories and Photo Accessories
Pretty amazing pricing, don’t you agree? And I hear service is top-notch.
What does this mean? The real change in the global marketplace is how technology – the Internet — will cause a major disruption in how products will get in the hands of global consumers. Amazon, Wal-Mart, Target and Alibaba better gear up for this massive shift before other companies like LightInTheBox, tear up the world with rock-bottom pricing and impressive product offerings. Zara, H&M and Forever 21 all have something to worry about here. A threat is lurking over the horizon.
Who needs a middleman? I don’t and you’ll soon find out you don’t either. As global consumers, the power lies in our hands.
Photo Credit: Alexandra Moss