There have been few major changes in the physical retail supply chain that has served big box retailers for more than three decades. But as more consumers shift to online shopping and the “omnichannel” retail model becomes the norm, experts say the old supply chain model is beginning to see fundamental changes.
E-commerce sales are growing at a healthy clip and are expected to account for more than 10% of total retail sales by 2016. As much as 60% of all retail sales originate online even though they may be completed at a brick-and-mortar retail store.
“Changes in retail are being driven by technology advancements and that we can’t control. Retailers, their vendors and third party logistics partners had better be aware of these changes and make better use of technology themselves,” said Anníbal Sodero, assistant professor supply chain management at the University of Arkansas.