‘Tis the Season for Surges in e-Commerce
It’s that time of year again as the Prime Group of companies, our global logistics customers, and our dedicated worldwide workforce ramp up efforts for 2021’s holiday retail season. Thankfully, e-commerce is booming – creating a torrent of consumer demand among our wholesale clients and retail industry businesses. In late September, eMarketer projected more than a trillion dollars in total retail holiday sales, $200 billion of that in online sales.
So, as this peak retail-buying season kicks off and people weary of the pandemic jump online to shop ‘till they drop, let’s all focus on the importance of keeping the global products pipeline “filled and flowing with goods.” Fortunately, the opportunities are sizable – ranging from the iconic “Black Friday” sales period (and increasingly, even several weeks before that) to the shopping weeks leading up to Thanksgiving, Christmas, Kwanza, and New Year’s.
During this peak retail sales period – despite many of the persistent stresses along the supply chain – I truly believe there are tremendous opportunities for all of us to shine. At Prime Group, our mission is to provide to our wholesale customers, grocery industry clients, and retail industry suppliers the highest standards in global-logistics support so that their goods arrive in a smooth, safe, and on-time fashion. We know just how important it is economically for our customers to succeed this holiday season in fulfilling their clients’ much-needed “retail fix.”
Consumers concerned about the COVID-19 variants this fall are again depending on the safety, convenience, and reliability of e-commerce channels to buy gifts for friends and relatives – and goods for themselves. In addition, they’re also buying a bit earlier than in the past, as they read news about worsening shortages of the latest electronics and other high-demand goods, and the lack of ample transport capacity by air, land, and sea. That includes everything from the latest fashions to furniture, electronics, office supplies, fresh flowers and perishable foods.
Over the past two years we’ve certainly seen that grocery e-commerce is among the fastest-growing product categories. Increasingly, we’re serving retail grocery operations, distributors, and food-and-beverage businesses such as restaurants – and even the cruise lines. In step with this growing trend, we are now in a position better assist our clients due to the recent expansion of cold storage facilities across our global network. This further allows us to maintain a safe, cold supply chain for shipping temperature-sensitive fruits, vegetables, cheese, fish, and seafood – not to mention vaccines and other medical materials.
On the technology side, we’ve also beefed up our systems and processes, so we’re able to track and monitor customer shipments more closely and to better communicate with them as to the status of those shipments. The goal is to ensure fresh, safe and on-time delivery worldwide.
The Not So Good
The time is now upon us to ensure the holiday season is a successful period for all. Timing is critical. It’s important to recognize that the entire global supply chain is still wrestling with material shortages, lack of availability of certain goods, and manufacturing changes due to factory closures, but also down line due to port closures, air transport delays, and a general lack of transport equipment and capacity. Couple that with consumers buying sooner than later, and it’s time to talk.
And the Jolly
While our lives have been reshaped by this pandemic, the 2021 holiday buying season offers opportunities for all of our businesses. For two decades, customers have depended on Prime Group to adjust to marketplace conditions and help them succeed in getting much needed products from point A to B and then. Through this year’s challenges, we’ve done that by adapting and responding to marketplace conditions that simply weren’t there in the same way in the past. We are working more closely with our customers than ever to help them avoid any pitfalls along the way – and to stay happy!
Yes, all the signs point to a bumpy ride as global industries head into 2022 and beyond. But let’s seize the opportunity to make this year’s holiday retail buying season a success. We’re here and ready to do our part for you.
– Roger Paredes, CEO