Online shopping is going from strength to strength, but are bricks and mortar retailers rising to the challenge?
Ten years ago, one of Australia’s great retail entrepreneurs and a renowned web sceptic made the bold declaration that: “Online people do not make any money."
Gerry Harvey, one of Australia’s most successful retailers, and whose Harvey Norman sells everything from computers to couches, has moved with the times.
While Harvey Norman has continued opening new stores at a rapid rate – including a brand new super-sized flagship operation in Sydney’s Auburn – it did get on board with the online trend and now runs a busy e-commerce site that currently generates 3 per cent of the company’s sales.
It’s part of a broader trend where traditional bricks and mortar retailers are diversifying sales channels and using the internet to drive foot traffic and interest in their physical stores.