The future of e-commerce panel at the TechNW event in Seattle.

Team GeekWire is settled in here at the third annual TechNW forum at Seattle’s City Hall, where 360 attendees are expected today.

The early morning panel was all about the future of the bustling e-commerce world that’s growing quickly — eMarketer predicts a 16.8 percent year-over-year growth this holiday season for online sales.

Eric Best, founder and CEO of Mercent, moderated a discussion between four speakers:

Kelly Dachtler, Co-Founder & President, The Clymb
Chris Teso, CEO & Founder, Chirpify
Jeff Warren, VP of Partner Marketing, Expedia
Maria Zhang, CEO & Founder, Alike

Some highlights of the 50-minute discussion:

The panelists were asked what they thought was the top disruption in the e-commerce industry.

Warren said it was the trend of last-minute booking and a consumer demand for deals. Users now have the ability to book a hotel or find an event on their phones while they’re walking around a city. He said it’s a challenge for bigger companies to catch up with local players like Groupon.

Dachtler said it was all about curating selection and bringing a digestable, personalized selection of products to the user. He noted social curation and being able to see what other people have similar tastes and desires.

For Teso, it’s the decentralization of commerce and embedding transactions within social media, similar to what his company does. It’s called social commerce and that’s essentially enabling businesses to monetize social.

Zhang said it was about how people search and discover products. She said the search engine solution makes the buying process too broad or too specific. Zhang also mentioned social curation.

Other quotable phrases: “Rapid personalization.” “Get through the clutter.” “Frictionless payment.” “Buying is easier than ever.”

“Payments are the worst part of buying anything. You want the payment to disappear. That’s what we’re working with for online payments.”  — Teso

“You need to build a brand above and beyond creating transactional services.” – Dachtler

“High speed internet is building a bridge between brick and mortar stores and e-commerce. I think it’s going to be blended into one in the near future.” – Zheng.

COMING UP: Comments from Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff

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