Brand Leaders Increase E-Commerce Spending Amid Economic Uncertainty

  • 94% of executives plan to maintain or increase e-commerce investments over the next 6-12 months.
  • Brand leaders are cautious but steadfast in their pursuit of discovering growth opportunities.

Pattern, a global leader in accelerating e-commerce growth, today released its first e-commerce executive strategy review: an analysis of the most common growth challenges brand leaders face and where they plan to invest in the near future.

One of the key findings of the study was the revelation that executives plan to increase their financial investment in e-commerce by an average of 16% over the next 6-12 months, with 25% of brand leaders reporting planned increases of 31% to 98%. Only 6% of executives surveyed plan to reduce their overall financial investment over the same period.

To compile the analysis, Pattern conducted an in-depth survey of over 300 North American founders and e-commerce executives across dozens of product categories, including beauty and personal care, sports and leisure, home and kitchen, tools and housewares, and more.

The research results are available on and shed light on a range of questions e-commerce executives face, including:

  • Do my peers struggle with the same obstacles to development that I struggle with?
  • How does our short-term growth strategy compare to others?
  • What investments am I missing?

“Every brand is more successful when they can make data-driven decisions, but brands have historically lacked access to good data on what’s driving their competitors and how they’re planning for the future,” said Pattern Chief Revenue Officer John LeBaron. “This snapshot ensures executives don’t have to rely on guesswork when making key decisions about how to shift strategy for 2024 and beyond.”

In the survey, directors identified a number of priority investment areas for the next 6-12 months:

  • 58% of executives plan to increase investment in product images, videos and advertising copy for online listings
  • 51% plan to increase their investment in influencer marketing
  • 43% intend to increase investments in branding and packaging
  • 41% increase their financial commitment to product design

The most frequently cited obstacles to growth include:

  • 1 in 3 CEOs say rising shipping costs and inability to maintain inventory levels are major obstacles to their growth
  • 1 in 4 brand leaders struggle to control unauthorized resellers and distributors, which undermines their sales and wreaks havoc on their growth strategy
  • 1 in 4 also say that the inability to expand into new channels and markets is holding back their growth

Many executives are turning to external partners to overcome these barriers. In the study, executives who partnered with an e-commerce accelerator to sell to marketplaces were twice as likely to report that they currently face no significant obstacles to their growth.