Here's why it matters. Since that is where the customers are going, so too are savvy retailers. • Some retailers are adding this channel to their existing operation; • Other retailers – aka, 'disruptors' – are using it to launch and rapidly grow their low-overhead retail operations . Consider Anissa Kheloufi, a 21 year old who founded an apparel company (after tiring of law school). Now with a web store as well as boutiques in Casablanca and Paris, she reports revenues for her startup of nearly $40,000 a month. And note this: 90% of those revenues flow through Instagram! How does this happen? Online marketplaces are hustling to make their platforms smartphone-friendly. Have you checked out these social media-friendly marketplaces recently? It's definitely worth it to spend some time on sites such as Shopify or Tictail. See how easy they make it appear to launch your own shop. As Bloomberg News notes, 'Ultimately, social shopping platforms are bulldozing yet another of retail’s barriers to entry.' And they don't stop there. 'We knew there were several platforms out there already, but our idea is an evolution of the e-commerce concept, ' says Carl Waldekranz, co-founder of Tictail. 'We don't focus on just starting a store, but on its first six months -- how to get traffic, follow up with old customers and give out deals.' Here's What This Really Means 'Handheld retail' meets ' handholding of retailers .' Pretty remarkable. One more example of our oft-stated view: 'Retail is a mirror of society.'