For several years now, there has been tension between the different approaches to retail – most notably – which is best, stores or online. And in particular if retailers should focus their efforts into physical stores or double down on website and ecommerce. And where do aspects like omnichannel retail and unified commerce fit in? So in this episode, Oliver Banks dives into the challenge to find the best option for you.

Listen in to this episode to discover:

  • Advantages of different approaches.
  • Why DTC is nothing new.
  • The answer to the ultimate question – should your retail business focus on stores or online.
  • And what Indiana Jones has to do with all of this.


Or reach out to Oliver by email on or find Oliver Banks on LinkedIn.

Ecommerce as a % of total retail sales

In the episode, Oliver Banks refers to a particular chart. If you’re not familiar with this, here is the view from the UK’s ONS (Office of National Statistics). There are equivalent ones for other countries across the world and all broadly show the same shape. With the differentiation of timings based on when lockdowns have been enforced in a particular country.

ONS data - ecommerce as percentage of total retail sales

Ultimately, what does this tell us? As a whole sector, retail sells less through stores when many stores are closed. The important aspects are when you zoom into your category, niche and customer base.

Further episodes of the Retail Transformation Show podcast to enjoy

If you enjoyed this breakdown of stores and physical places vs online and ecommerce, then also check out these other episodes.

Firstly, episode 126: The Complexity Of Omnichannel Retail where Oliver Banks explores the key themes and terms from the world of omnichannel.

126: The Complexity Of Omnichannel Retail - The Retail Transformation Show with Oliver Banks

Next, listen to the 2 parter with the team from Uncrowd. In episode 68: How To Win Customers (part 1) and episode 69: (part 2) to hear RIchard Hammond and Rocky Howard explain why thinking in terms of friction and reward.

068: How To Win Customers (part 1) with Richard Hammond and Rocky Howard- The Retail Transformation Show with Oliver Banks

069: How To Win Customers (part 2) with Richard Hammond and Rocky Howard - The Retail Transformation Show with Oliver Banks

And finally, back in episode 26: Defining Your Retail Operating Model, Oliver Banks explores how you can take a purpose and create an operating model that fulfils that vision.

026 - Defining Your Retail Operating Model - The Retail Transformation Show with Oliver Banks

Plus there are loads of over great episodes, so do check out the full list and load up your playlist!


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