As we have entered the digital age, where everything from purchases to sales can be done using mobile devices, there’s one solid conclusion we all can draw: e-commerce development is here to stay.
According to eMarketer, The US consumers were projected to spend $586.92 billion on e-commerce in 2019, showing an increase of 14 percent from 2018 and comprising 10.7 percent of the total US retail spending. Also, Statista discovered that about 80% of internet users in the US have purchased something at least once online.
But acing the e-commerce game is not just about creating a website, stocking up products, and starting to sell. It’s one of the most dynamic industries to have come up; so, you need to catch up with the ever-changing trends.
As we inch closer to 2020, let’s take a look at a few trends that are likely to shape the realm of e-commerce the coming year:
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
AI should undoubtedly be on the first spot because it’s completely revolutionizing the world of business altogether. 47% percent of digitally mature companies say they have a well-defined AI strategy in place. It is expected that more and more organizations will embrace this technology to bring about a change in several of their functions.
Most companies are already leveraging AI for identifying market patterns and customer segmentation based on people’s browsing history. In fact, retailers have already realized a significant boost in their sales revenue after they implemented AI-based personalization strategies. After all, personalization holds the key to better customer relations and, ultimately, a stronger brand identity.
Augmented Reality (AR)
Online shopping is certainly the in-thing nowadays as it makes shopping so much more convenient. But, a huge chunk of customers still likes to go the old-school way. They prefer to buy a product once they get to experience it. For example, if a customer wants to buy furniture online, it will be better if you can give them the experience of how the piece will actually look inside their living room.
That’s what Augmented Reality (AR) does. It whisks customers away into a lifelike simulation that gives them the complete idea of how something will look and feel in real life. You should certainly incorporate the AR feature for your customers so that they are more inclined to buy your product. Since most of the e-commerce websites don’t offer this feature, you can make a mark for yourself in the competitive landscape by adding this.
Elements like Google Assistant, Alexa, and Siri are no longer a secret for us. They are very much out there, making a difference in the way people search for their favorite song or required information. Do you know what’s driving them? It’s the power of voice command—something that lets you make the transition from “typing in” to “speaking out.”
Google reveals that 72% of people owning a voice-activated speaker say they use the device as a part of their daily life. So, it means that people are going to speak long sentences to find out something. This is where you need to be smart about using relevant, long-tail keywords in your product page so that it appears in people’s queries.
Marketing automation isn’t a new concept in the world of e-commerce. In fact, some companies have already achieved 17% percent higher CTR by using custom automation workflows. It’s just that organizations now have to fold in marketing automation more than the usual in 2020. Besides scheduling social media posts and automating email marketing, marketing automation has now become more about easy-to-access shopping carts and customized landing pages.
When you get your marketing automation right, you will be able to send out personalized emails to your prospects and customers, use people’s shopping history to display new promotions and products, and re-target customers for product sales. It’s an excellent way to influence buyers’ perception and entice them to buy from you.
Enhanced Shipping Options
In the last few years, the retail industry saw shipping and logistics stagnate. A few small improvements like free shipping were made here and there. But nothing big emerged until 2013, the year when the idea of same-day delivery became a mainstream phenomenon.
Nonetheless, things began to gain momentum in this area since then. Take the example of Amazon testing drone deliveries in the USA. By integrating with Google Maps, these specialized drones can identify the shortest route to the delivery destination. In 2020, this trend is likely to grow as major improvements in technology come along. So, there’s no denying the fact that drones will soon become a viable component of many retail businesses.
Subscription-based companies have gained immense traction in recent years. Much of it is because of the success they deliver. Disposable incomes are higher for people in their twenties than what was twenty years ago. However, the overall wealth is lower, indicating that this age group is making far less big one-off purchases.
By 2020, the business world can expect to see a tremendous rise in the number of subscription-based businesses than ever before. This is a noteworthy e-commerce trend that’s been steadily growing over the past few years. However, one of the most challenging areas for subscription-based companies, particularly those that send product boxes each month, is sustaining the sense of value and variety with each monthly delivery. This requires the idea generation to be strong enough and should be backed by a strong understanding of the target market.
2020 will see the shopping experience of consumers becoming more seamless with the rise of social payment options. Popularized by Paypal, social payment options let users pay for their purchases using social media.
Today, almost all major social media platforms have come up with their own version. To name a few, you have ApplePay, WhatsApp Pay, GooglePay, Facebook payments, and Twitter Buy. These payment methods work just like a digital bank account. It’s just that it takes place on social media. Users can either buy products on these platforms or from online retailers that offer social payment methods.