How to prepare for the next generation of commerce

The coming “fifth generation” of retail will require members of this category, and the brands that rely on them, to make significant changes to their strategies.

The retail industry experienced “roughly ten years of market shift, or channel shift, in ten weeks” as COVID-19 began to spread, according to Duncan Painter.

His evidence for this claim includes data from 1,600 retail platforms which are tracked every day by Edge, an e-commerce data and solutions provider that is owned by information company Ascential, where Painter serves as CEO (Ascential is also the parent company of WARC).

Retail executives may be tempted to attribute the current wave of disruption solely to COVID-19 – from the lockdowns and stay-at-home orders that meant brick-and-mortar stores were frequently off-limits to a...

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