Balancing DTC, Amazon, & retail ecommerce

“Ecommerce" in the CPG space used to mean two things: Amazon and direct-to-consumer. In the last three years, however, a new channel has entered the chat…

We live in an increasingly omnichannel world where modern consumers are transitioning from online to offline channels, vice versa, and now from one online channel to another. Physical and digital storefronts were once equal-but-disjointed parts of commerce, then retail ecomm bridged the gap between the two. Anything that was once only available through brick-and-mortar is, in most cases, now purchasable online through retailers’ ecommerce shopping carts.

As ecommerce continues to evolve with improved shoppability and shoppable tools, a lot of brands are questioning when or how to fit this new retail ecommerce experience into their existing pure play and DTC strategies.

The reality is that each channel has their unique use cases and strengths, but when viewed as complementary, they can lead to valuable incremental sales and overall brand growth.

The best brands balance all three.

On their own, DTC, pure play (e.g. Amazon), and retail ecommerce are all revenue-generating channels for brands. Together, they take things to the next level by increasing brand awareness and household penetration.

Some brands have even found that implementing a retail ecommerce strategy unlocked opportunities for growth beyond what was possible through their own DTC channels, like Liquid Death.

Liquid Death–the unstoppable water startup currently valued at $700 million–was originally founded on a direct-to-consumer subscription model. On the tailwinds of their massive growth in July 2022, the company announced their shift away from DTC, leveraging retail and Amazon as their core commerce channels. The brand stated:

“Amazon is much better at lugging cases of water to your front door so we decided to let them deal with the hard work. Plus, it’ll save you a lot of money. Or use those two things dangling from your torso and walk into any Whole Foods Market, 7-Eleven, Sprouts, Publix, Sheetz, GetGo, and other retailers.”

Liquid Death currently offers a Subscribe & Save option on their site through Amazon, meeting the preferences of their loyal “death heads'' who previously enjoyed the convenience of recurring shipments directly to their home. By implementing retail ecommerce shoppability, the brand is also creating greater awareness and educating customers on which retailers are selling their water nearby while providing the path to actually purchase it - without ever leaving the website.

Shoppable PDPs embedded directly onto their product pages lets customers buy Liquid Death through retailers where they already have accounts or established purchasing habits. Murdering your thirst couldn’t be easier.

Other brands find success in capturing new shoppers through retail ecommerce and Amazon and converting those customers into brand loyalists through their existing DTC channels.

Take Siete Family Foods, for example. Sometimes consumers want to sample a single product before committing to a full online order or subscription. But once they’ve tried the product and enjoyed it, they’re more likely to seek it out again, try other flavors or products from the brand, and become repeat purchasers.

While Siete offers a 10% discount for the Subscribe & Save option on their product pages, their shoppable store locator makes it easy for consumers to try and be delighted by their products first at any in-stock retailer in a shopper’s zip code.

When later presented with opportunities to subscribe and save through email remarketing, for example, those same retail ecomm purchasers are more likely to convert to subscribers and drive growth via the DTC channel, having already tried and enjoyed the product.

Siete Foods - Store Locator - Mobile and Desktop View

Creating paths to purchase through retailers doesn’t have to mean sacrificing DTC or Amazon sales. With the right infrastructure, brands can take advantage of consumers’ established and preferred shopping habits and realize growth through all three channels.

Doing retail ecommerce right.

Of course, every brand would love to grow sales through every ecommerce channel. Without the right platform or tools, however, successfully unlocking the retail ecommerce piece can be a huge challenge.

Brands lose insight into anything that happens once a customer bridges over from an ad or store locator to a retailer’s site. This makes realizing the potential of retail ecommerce tricky, and it certainly makes capturing shopper insights or running any type of performance marketing nearly impossible.

Until now.

Pear connects CPGs to retailers, converting shoppable media into actionable insights that fuel performance marketing. Our platform provides brands with the shoppability and insights needed to materially move the needle, generating retail ecommerce strategies that drive awareness, trial, and repeat purchases.

With Pear, brands can:

  • Quickly implement shoppable landing pages, widgets (like Liquid Death’s), actionable store locators (like Siete’s), and direct to cart links for frictionless shopper journeys.
  • Provide multiple paths-to-purchase - whether it be through Amazon, direct-to-consumer, or nearby retailers. We connect any UPC to every retailer, down to the regional level.
  • Decide which retailers or purchasing options customers see and what order they see them in. DTC brands can list their own website option first.
  • Rely on real-time inventory scanning to ensure shoppers never hit out-of-stock links. Customers will only see products that are currently in-stock purchasable in their area (other shoppable tools use inventory data that is 2+ weeks old).
  • Capture insights to make mid-campaign decisions to improve ROAS. The Pear dashboard updates reporting in real-time.
  • Collect shopper behavior data and build audience sets which can then be used to run performance marketing.

Interested in learning more?

Connect with our team to discuss the shoppable products and unique balance between DTC, Amazon, and Retail Ecommerce that will work best for your brand.

Retail ecomm for omnichannel brands
Get in touch to learn more!
Schedule a demo

Explore related articles

Ready to capture greater share of wallet at retail?

Level up your retail ecommerce experience and unlock shoppability, insights, and performance marketing with Pear.
Get started
exit button
exit button

The Retail Ecommerce Playbook by Pear Commerce

Your guide to capturing greater share of wallet at retail.

Five years ago, retail ecommerce didn’t exist. Today, supporting the channel is table stakes for consumer packaged goods brands.

This playbook is designed to guide CPG brands from the stages of awareness to purchase at retail. Whether you’re interested in retail ecommerce as a new channel opportunity or looking to level up existing efforts, The Retail Ecommerce Playbook covers tools, tips, and examples to help your brand succeed.