The COVID-19 pandemic undoubtedly benefited e-commerce, with McKinsey
noting that global lockdowns resulted in a decade’s worth of e-commerce growth realized in only 10 months. Yet the e-commerce industry is facing a critical threat similar to other sectors – an extreme labour shortage. That threat could see digital e-commerce innovation come to a halt.
Paramount among the specific threats resulting from the labour shortage is lack of talent, which means companies are having a difficult time finding the expertise they need to take their business to the next level. Talent is also disappearing for two reasons: top talent are no longer looking at e-commerce as an attractive place to be and instead they are looking at NFT projects, crypto, AI and ML, resulting in less innovation in e-commerce. Many are also increasingly becoming entrepreneurs themselves, leveraging what they’ve learned at brands to start their own successful ventures, shrinking the pool of available talent.
E-commerce is becoming expensive, driven by the higher salaries required to attract and retain top talent, the costs of building and optimizing sites which is increasing the costs being passed onto consumers, and rising supply chain costs. With e-commerce increasingly no longer a place to find affordable products, the industry may be in jeopardy.