From Retail to E-tail to MEtail℠
Stein looks at the brief 15 year history of electronic retailing, which took roots at the height of the 90's dotcom boom when young 20 something millionaire entrepreneurs were seeking a new way of monetizing the world-wide web. Stein notes the origins of the pure-play E-tailers, the fear and denial of conventional retail; through the 'clicks and bricks' of cross platform acceptance. Stein notes his role in predicting this transformation, while addressing audiences at the 1999 and 2000 NRF Convention in New York. In 2010, with the disruptive effect that the smartphone was beginning to have on retail, Stein coined the term MEtail℠ short for Mobile Electronic Retail; he noted "With the point of sale tucked away in a backpack, back pocket or purse, how will the retailer or brand engage this new highly mobile consumer? Simply put, the concept of 'the store' has changed forever".