PayPal President and CEO Dan Schulman said the company is seeing “substantial macro changes” that they believe will have a lasting and profoundly positive impact on their business since the start of the pandemic.
“The world has accelerated from physical to digital across multiple industries, including retail,” Schulman said on the second quarter earnings call. “Merchants are embracing a digital-first strategy, and these trends have fueled the rapid rise of digital payments.”
The company reported that in the first half of 2020, the penetration of e-commerce as a percentage of retail sales outpaced prior external forecast by three to five years. In this environment, the demand for products and services has dramatically increased. Opportunities have opened for traditional brick-and-mortar retailers who are excited to try new things.
Personally, I’m inspired by even the smallest local brick-and-mortar retailers who have found ways to leverage digital to boost sales and improve customer service. One of my favorite local home furnishings stores has been rocking connections with customers who can’t shop in-store through daily Instagram lives. Chatting about everything from family and recent (affordable) Target finds to behind-the-scenes and decor trends, the owner invites her customers in virtually with a beautiful backdrop that inspires questions and keeps the store top of mind.
Case in point: when I was looking for an outdoor settee that would fit an awkward and tiny space, the shop was the first I thought of—not Wayfair or Houzz. We want to hear more about what you are doing to leverage digital in your stores. Shoot us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.