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It’s a new year and like most business owners, it’s likely you’re looking for ways to increase your annual revenue come 2016. In fact, you wouldn’t be a very ambitious business owner if you weren’t.

With increased profitability top of mind, you could search the internet for countless articles on how to scale smartly and successfully in order to reach your goals. However, let’s also remember the number one reason startups and small businesses fail, even after raising venture capital: scaling prematurely. It’s most often self-destruction, rather than competition, that draws the line in the sand between whether your brand becomes a household name or merely another statistic.

It isn’t enough then, to scale. You need to scale at the right time, in the right industry and with the right product and services offering.

It isn’t enough then, to scale. You need to scale at the right time, in the right industry and with the right product and services offering.

Whether you’re just starting up a new venture or looking to diversify your current online store, Bigcommerce’s Ecommerce Report can help guide you in the right direction. Below, we break down the best performing industries based on average growth in annual Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV), growth in GMV per store and growth in average order value. Tens of thousands of online stores were analyzed. Industries can score between 0-5.

Bigcommerce Ecommerce Report

Here’s the breakdown:

  • Computers & Electronics: 4.25 stars
  • Lifestyle & Home: 3.75 stars
  • Automotive & Industrial: 3.5 Stars
  • Wholesale: 3.25 stars
  • Outdoors & Health: 3 stars
  • Fashion, Beauty & Bridal: 2.75 stars
  • Hobbies & Travel: 2.75 stars
  • Business & Education: 2.5 stars
  • Entertainment: 1.5 stars

The overall industry winner here is clear: computers and electronics are where consumers are spending their cash. The wearables market plays a huge role here, as does the adoption of smartphones across all economic lines. In fact, smartphones are expected to account for two-thirds of the world’s mobile market by 2020. Top performing online stores in the computers and electronics segment are selling such popular items as:

  • Smartphone and tablet cases
  • Speakers
  • Drone equipment
  • Ecigarettes
  • Camera equipment

An unexpected rising star in the ecommerce space is wholesale. With a relatively healthy growth trajectory, wholesale may just be the online retail world’s newest darling. Wholesalers, often in combination with dropshippers, allow for online stores to diversify without having the handle additional inventory. For online store owners, especially those already producing product at high quantities, wholesaling may be a very viable option to increase revenue in 2015.

When looking to scale your business, use industry and market data, as well as analytics from your own store, to back your decisions. As author Geoffrey Moore said, “without data, you are blind and deaf and in the middle of a freeway.” Analyzing data can be the one move that helps your company elude the often melancholy scaling statistics, instead pivoting you to year-over-year growth and ecommerce success.

For more detailed information on all of the ecommerce industries, best selling cities and more, check out the Bigcommerce Ecommerce Report.

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