The Most Inspiring Moments From Our First Live Event | Yotpo

Last updated on February 1, 2024

Aliza Polkes
Copywriter & Editor @ Yotpo
August 5th, 2019 | 4 minutes read

“Speak up and make sure your voice is heard. They’re not going to listen if you stop talking, either.”

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The mood was festive at Chicago’s Little Goat Kitchen — one of celebrity chef Stephanie Izard’s several restaurants — as a group of 50 women gathered for great food, great company, and an engaging panel discussion led by Leah Ard, Solutions Architect at Magento.

This was our very first Amazing Women in eCommerce (AWiE) live event, a direct extension of the initiative launched in 2018. We created AWiE to highlight inspirational, game-changing women working in the eCommerce space, based on thousands of nominations from the broader eCommerce and retail industry.

The live panel featured Tara McGrath, Delivery Principal at Gorilla Group, Adriana Kwicinski, Digital Marketing Manager at Birdies, and Chelsie Arvizu, eCommerce Director at Hint. Over the course of the conversation, the women touched on a wide array of eComm-related topics, ranging from trend predictions, to female empowerment within the industry, and more.

We rounded up some discussion highlights below:

What do you think is the next big trend that will define the industry?

“Consumers are going to have more control over the eCommerce experience. They’re going to start curating their own personal stores and shopping experiences to share with their networks and friends. We’ve seen this scale with influencers, working on different platforms that allow them to monetize all of their favorite products or brands they work with. But I think this will soon be put in the hands of all consumers.” – Adriana Kwicinski

“I’m waiting for true virtual shopping to really come. I think we’re getting there as we intertwine in-store, pick-up, and delivery to a point where it’s all seamless. I don’t think in-store will ever necessarily go away — you do want to feel products, you want to see them alive — but there is going to be a point where you’re virtually walking through stores and picking out what you already know you want.” – Chelsie Arvizu

How is the industry empowering women?

“eCommerce itself has given women an outlet or voice to demand products that they need. So whether it’s a special kind of product that should be tailored for women, or whatever the case may be, we have that outlet now and there’s more of an opportunity. Brands aren’t just targeting women for “pink jerseys” — they’re targeting women because there’s this specific data-driven demand for designing the jersey in that way. People are listening to the demands that women have in the marketplace.” – Tara McGrath

“eCommerce and digital is so new and ever-evolving. There’s not that same gender bias that other, older industries have started with, and which you have to “break out” of. eComm has cultivated a culture that anyone can be a part of.” – Adriana

Who do you surround yourself with for personal and professional empowerment?

“One of my girlfriends is at Unilever on their charity/giving side. Having people like that — totally not in my realm — really keeps me in check, and helps me remember what’s important to customers outside of revenue generation. For example: yes, you can personalize, but is that personalization just for a sale, or are you doing it because you truly care about the customer?” – Chelsie

What advice would you give your younger self?

“Speak up and make sure your voice is heard. A lot of times you have to say things three times, whereas somebody else may only have to say something once. Just continue to do that even when it’s frustrating or when you feel that people aren’t listening. They’re not going to listen if you stop talking, either.” – Tara