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12 Statistics Every E-Commerce Marketing Manager/Associate Should Know About Their Role in 2021

Learn how other e-commerce marketing managers and associates are growing their careers and contributing to team goals.

E-commerce marketing managers and associates critically work in both tactical and strategic ways. They are integral to devising and running campaigns, bringing new creativity to the table, and ensuring performance goals are met in the face of a changing competitive environment.

Sidecar’s 2021 E-Commerce Marketer Survey takes a closer look at just that. Sidecar surveyed marketing professionals in the e-commerce and retail industry who are based in North America.

Respondents reported job titles including associate, manager, director, VP, chief marketing officer (CMO), and chief executive officer (CEO). They also reported company revenue, which we grouped into three buckets: <$10 million (referred to as “small” retailers), $10 million to <$50 million (referred to as “mid-sized” retailers), and $50 million+ (referred to as “enterprise” retailers).

Here’s a look at what associates and managers told us about how they’re developing their roles and staying ahead of the game.

86% of associates/managers believe they have the training and skills to succeed in e-commerce marketing over the next 12-24 months.

Yet nearly all still reported a new skill they wish to obtain to advance their careers.


Data analytics is the #1 skill that e-commerce marketing associates/managers believe will advance their careers.

Associates and managers are looking to adapt to evolving platforms and marketplaces, which helps explain the skill sets they’re looking for. While marketers across all role levels are looking to understand a retail market that’s increasingly online and data-driven, associates/managers are in a unique position to develop relevant skill sets and show their company just what they’re capable of. Filling those expertise gaps can be a key part of moving up. 


48% of associates/managers wish they could spend more time on data analysis.

This response in particular aligns with the skills associates/managers prioritized in our survey. Many associates/managers who want to learn more about data analytics also want to spend more time with their data.


48% of associates/managers wish they could spend more time on competitive analysis.

Competitive analysis also ranked high among associates/managers. Understanding key information about competitors is crucial to making a brand stand out.


Limited time is the #1 challenge for e-commerce marketing associates/managers, with 57% reporting this challenge.

The associate/manager role is focused on carrying out tactics to execute the larger strategy. With many activities on tap, it’s important to manage time well and know how to prioritize efforts.


From an advertising perspective, Pinterest (34%), TikTok (26%), and Snapchat (21%) got the most support from associates and managers, compared to the support from more senior-level marketers.

This could be because associates/managers have a more native understanding of these platforms. These platforms also present new challenges and learnings, creating a leadership opportunity for associates/managers to run new campaigns and develop best practices for their team. 


Amazon and Instagram are the top ad platforms that e-commerce marketing associates/managers want to spend more time on, with 37% reporting these platforms.

The e-commerce marketing industry has formed many best practices and case studies around successful advertising on Amazon and Instagram. Yet these platforms also present plenty of headroom for growth, in which brands can claim white space.


66% of e-commerce marketing teams plan to hire vendors and 67% plan to hire in-house talent over the next 12 months.

E-commerce marketers are planning to grow their internal and extended teams earnestly in 2021, which can lead to new growth opportunities for managers and associates.


Top hires for the next 12 months (across any job level) are social media marketing, email marketing, and content marketing.

Now is a key time for managers/associates to determine how to focus their own skill and experience development to make themselves more marketable to employers.


69% of associates and managers have time to handle ad creative, the task that the largest number of associates and managers can handle.

Associates/managers may be able to prioritize ad creative in-house because the task relies heavily on assets that tend to originate in-house, like product imagery.


Only 17% of associates and managers have time to track channel updates, the task that the least number of associates and managers can handle.

Google, Facebook, Amazon, and other major platforms are constantly changing, which creates a constant battle to stay up-to-date and aware of how to adjust your campaigns and capitalize on new features.


60% of associates and managers want to automate bid adjustments for keywords and products.

Bid adjustments are tactical and time-consuming — ideal for automation. For associates and managers, their focus in the future won’t be in executing time-consuming marketing tasks like bid adjustments, but rather in identifying opportunities where they can build automation into human-led strategy. Value will lie in understanding the data that supports those ideas and applying the automation to execute strategy and deliver high performance.


In today’s rapidly changing marketing landscape, there’s plenty of room to innovate and grow. Seizing the right opportunities and understanding what you can provide your company are the keys to advancing your career.

The 2021 E-commerce Marketer Survey has 50 pages of stats and findings, well beyond what we could fit in this article. Download it now for more insights on driving your career growth and contributing to your team goals.

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