Direct-to-consumer (DTC) gave rise to many success stories during the Covid-19 pandemic, allowing digitally native brands to connect with customers and succeed at a time when other retail businesses were forced to temporarily close or pivot to online. Since the pandemic, DTC models have continued to evolve, becoming a mainstay of the ecommerce landscape and offering opportunities for both startups launching new businesses and legacy brands seeking new routes to market.

This quick guide, an abridged version of Econsultancy’s Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) Best Practice Guide, looks at the driving factors behind the growth and popularity of DTC models and provides guidance for brands seeking to implement a DTC strategy. It covers:

  • Benefits: From greater control over the customer experience to increased profit margins, what are some of the key benefits of going DTC?
  • Current context: Despite having helped many businesses weather the storm of the pandemic, the DTC model does not make brands immune to the challenges of current market conditions. What are some of the headwinds specific to DTC that businesses should be aware of?
  • Routes to market: With five key DTC routes to market, how do they differ from each other and what should brands consider when weighing up which is right for their business?
  • Capabilities: Alongside a compelling product, DTC models require specific capabilities to work. What are the 9Ps required in order for a DTC proposition to succeed?
  • Opportunities: Unique to ecommerce is the ‘long-tail’ opportunity. How can DTC brands capitalise on this, and what can they do to sustain growth in the long-term?