The eCommerce Show North is recognised as the largest eCommerce exhibition outside of London, attended by the most prestigious brands in the industry. With Manchester, Lancashire and West Yorkshire being established as the top 3 regions for eCommerce brands, the show provides a platform for businesses from start-ups to industry leaders to teach, network and learn. Megan Cross, Marketing Recruitment Manager, and Sophie Parkin, Senior Marketing and eCommerce Recruitment Consultant, went along to the event to find out what the industry experts had to say…


Nick Glynne, Managing Director, Buy It Direct – “Strategies to counter the threat to UK online retailers from Amazon and other marketplaces”

Expert strategist with over 18 years of experience in the eCommerce business, Nick Glynne spoke about the issue of online empires such as Amazon and their impact on the business environment. The passion in Nick’s voice was evident, with a vast field of knowledge surrounding the digital sphere it is clear how he took a computer repair shop in 2000 and propelled it into Buy It Direct – accumulating a staggering 80,000% (£240m) rise in company value from the initial £3,000 he paid for it. Not a small feat by any means, but Nick couldn’t build this success on his own and now has 450 employees on his payroll committed to working efficiently whether that is in 300,000 square foot warehouses or state-of-the-art call centres.

Buy It Direct is still turning over profit year on year, which expertly illustrates how Nick is a true professional when it comes to protecting UK online retailers against the threat of eCommerce giants like Jeff Bezos’ Amazon. Commercial strategy and lobbying strategy (PR & Lobbying, etc.) are key factors to help marketplaces like Buy It Direct succeed.

The key, according to Nick, is about retailing not “e-tailing,” targeting consumers who understand retail and dealing with vendors who are not saturated with products. Amazon has “won the war,” Nick says, but this does not mean there isn’t any opportunity to make hay while the sun still shines, specific strategies can lead to profit even in the wake of huge corporations.


Liam Howley, Group Marketing Director, Music Magpie – “Evolve or Die: Introducing musicMagie V2”

Last up for the day, Liam Howley, with an inspiring talk on how to tackle the issue of your business model getting disrupted by big giants such as Netflix and Spotify. ‘Evolve or die: Introducing musicMagpie V2’ talked about how musicMagpie overcame the obstacles they faced in their re-commerce revolution to convert them from a CD, DVD and Game Trader to the UK’s leading Phone and Tech ecommerce businesses. Liam discussed their current and future strategic marketing plans to maximise brand growth, customer acquisition, conversion and retention, highlighting their ability to evolve and adapt in a changing marketplace! With over 5 million customers worldwide and officially the largest third-party seller on both eBay and Amazon, their unprecedented growth and success is set to continue.


Thanks to the eCommerce Show North and all of the exceptionally talented speakers, we came away learning a lot about the eCommerce industry and what it has to offer.

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