E-commerce Development Trends You Aren’t Prepared For
The E-commerce business has seen exponential growth in the last few decades, and it doesn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon. The global pandemic has also played an enormous role in giving e-commerce a solid nudge that has skyrocketed its growth. Not only the B2C e-commerce sector but the B2B e-commerce development trends have seen a pivotal shift.
As per the statistics, in 2020, retail e-commerce sales worldwide will amount to 4.28 trillion US dollars, and e-retail revenues are estimated to grow to 5.4 trillion US dollars in 2022.
These numbers are mind-blowing!
Image Source: Statista
Online shopping has become a favorite hobby of a lot of people worldwide. Every now and then, you can witness delivery guys and ladies swarming the streets and delivering packages to people all across the globe. The delivery products range from groceries, clothes to even hefty furniture.
Well if you get the facility to shop from anywhere and anytime you want with just one tap, who would want to step out?
Providing people with the comfort to shop at their convenience has been the reason behind the sudden rise of The e-commerce platform.
However, with great growth comes great competition as more people would want to jump into it to reap the benefits. The on-demand retail sector has now become the epicenter of bringing enormous changes into the retail industry. Due to the change in people’s ideology, market, and the way people are adapting to it, an unprecedented shift in e-commerce development trends has been observed. And that will change from time to time and will be constant.
As daunting as it may sound, in only a few decades the e-commerce market has turned the tables around in the matter of how people shop and conduct transactions.
Needless to say, the pandemic has forced a lot of businesses to move online in order to sustain themselves. And due to that, it has given the people who are staying at home the freedom to shop at their convenience and to their heart’s content.
The global Pandemic also caused a paradigm shift in the customer research, customer communication, and business handling strategies. Retailers have to observe and adopt in order to keep their business afloat and generate revenue.
Thus it is more crucial than ever to plan and form a suitable strategy to keep pace with the constantly growing retail industry. Since the market, as well as the trends, are changing quicker than the ice melts, you need to keep yourself updated, so you do not miss out on the opportunities to gain new customers and keep your existing ones engaged like always.
More businesses are going online now than in the last decade that has made the e-commerce sector a hub of cutthroat competition. No matter how old your business is, you need to step up your game, keep a close eye on the ever-changing online retail trends to stay ahead of the game. Sounds overwhelming, right?
Well, no need to worry; we got you covered. Below are the 6 most crucial e-Commerce development trends that you need to watch out for and adopt the same according to your brand.
Let’s dive in!
1. Leveraging the Artificial Intelligence
The ongoing technology has made people’s life easier with its efficiency, efficacy, and high profitability.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is the happy-go-lucky child of modern technology. It has been a major contributor in making online e-commerce streamlined with its adaptability and learning technologies.
In the last few decades, we have witnessed that Artificial Intelligence has been helping e-commerce websites to effectively target audiences, smoothening the transactional cycle and increasing their productivity.
Even with the omnipresent benefits of incorporating Artificial Intelligence in your online e-commerce business still, a lot of retailers are reluctant to hold the hand of Artificial intelligence and walk with it.
Several Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning-based tools help you to set up customized and personalized audience approaches that could help you in engaging your customers in an effective manner. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning technologies observe and understand human behavior and optimize themselves accordingly.
One of the biggest examples of the same is chatbots.
Chatbots have been a game-changer in catering to customers and gathering data. They are like a personal assistant to guide you every step of the way and solve almost all your queries without having to interact with a real person.
Previously chatbots were not as accurate as they could have been; however, when artificial intelligence was injected into chatbots it has paved the way to a whole new experience.
Artificial Intelligence-powered chatbots provide more accurate and relevant responses to the customer’s query which results in a great customer experience and increases the satisfaction percentage.
The artificial intelligence-powered chat boxes are smarter, faster, effective, cheaper, and more accurate. With the world changing swiftly we need to embrace the change in technology and include it in our strategy so that you can make your work here along with providing amazing customer satisfaction and shopping experience.
2. Keep Your Customers Informed & Updated
The online retail industry has seen a quick structural shift. The Covid-19 Pandemic has resulted in many businesses temporarily shutting their services and being forced to wait until the situation gets better. These situations make it significantly more imperative to keep your clients educated regarding your whereabouts. Hence the retailers should keep it on the need to keep their clients educated.
Since a very much educated customer could turn into an esteemed customer. You can decide on various approaches to update your customers and visitors about your current situation and future actions.
You can opt for different ways to inform your customer. It can be a part of your customer loyalty program for a way to gain new customers; you need to educate them how your business is adjusting to the new changes and what is the following stage with respect to it.
Since numerous platforms online and offline are available to reach the masses, you need to make sure that you contact your customers effectively and most conveniently. For that, you need to figure out your target audience and plan a strategy for the same.
Many small and big businesses have opted for weekly monthly newsletters, which are sent automatically to the customers. That way, you can convey the essential aspects of your business like a product added to the site, the new season sale, you opening your new office in a different location or you temporarily closing your business down.
Numerous platforms are available to establish an automatic customer loyalty and notification system that will keep your target audience and customers informed about the latest aspects of your business.
Bonus Tip: Do not hesitate to customize your approach depending on your customers and their interests. For example, you are a Pet’s accessory business owner and you’d like to send email newsletters to your customers. Sending a new “dog-collar launching” email to your cat lover and owner audience would not look so good on your part and could create a problem or should we say a purrabolem (Pun-intended!)
Thus it is important to conduct research about your audience and target customer base, conduct research on their interest, segment them into different categories, and then cater to them accordingly.
Keep your customers updated about yourself with a strategic approach, which could be a significant contributor to increasing your brand’s value as people will be more informed about you, feel connected with you and your brand.
Do not forget a well-informed customer could become a valued customer.
3. Use Tools to Keep an Eye on Your Competitors
Preparing an effective strategy that is working for your brand is a good step; however, optimizing that strategy to match your competitor’s pace is even better.
You do not have to stalk your competitors up and down and go into the nitty-gritty of the steps that they are doing for their respective brands.
However, do not hesitate to look at your competitors and analyze their performance, the steps they are taking, and how those particular actions work for them.
Competitor analysis is essential as that helps you Where you stand as compared to your competitors in the different aspects and metrics that you both may or may not be incorporating. Along with the sea, rich in their search trends and traffic, which could lead to potential customers and the possible reason behind the same
If the steps taken by a competitor are working effectively and you are able to see growth or spike in their trends, take a calm and careful look at the strategy and decide if you can and would like to incorporate the same in your marketing strategy. You cannot or do not want to do everything your competitor is doing because what works for them might not work for you; however, being aware of their strategies, next steps and spike friends is an excellent step to measure trends.
There are numerous tools available online like SEMrush, Buzzsumo, Ahrefs, etc., where you can perform competitive research and check how your competitors are performing over a particular period and analyze their trends.
4. Opting for New Marketing Channels
Promoting your business online is as important as running a business online.
Having just a website that caters to your brand services and the product is not enough. You need to maintain your mark in the public’s eye by opting different measures.
You can hold the hand of digital advertising. If you have incorporated a strategic approach and chosen the right marketplace to advertise your products/ services you can stay ahead of the competition and reach a wider audience.
There are various platforms that you can choose from like Google ads, Facebook ads, native advertising et cetera, depending on your product or services, an end goal, and target audience.
With the customized marketing platform and approach, you will have the ability to effectively interact with your customers, learn what they are looking for, and engage them. Online marketing allows you to keep pace with the evolving e-commerce development trends as well as incorporate strategies to march hand-in-hand and adjust well to the changing e-commerce trends.
Not only this, online marketing increases your reach to a global market space where you can narrow down your audience, target location and other targeting criteria based on your brand and its objective. Since e-commerce has given businesses the ability to increase their reach among the customers. Incorporating the online marketing strategy will allow you to save money and reach more customers and gather their attention as compared to traditional retail.
For example,if you want to reach a specific set of audiences Facebook advertising is the platform for you. Here you can advertise to people of a certain age, interest, behavior, location and gender. If you are really specific about your target audience and objective,customers you can use Facebook advertising.
Google ad enables you to focus on the people who are searching for a product or servic.Here you can also eliminate the words for which you do not want your ads to appear. Isn’t it cool?!
On the other hand native ad is like sponsored content and matches the form and function of the platform upon which its display. They mingle themselves with the content of the website and could function like an advertorial and present themselves as a video or editorial offering. Choosing the right marketing platform is like using your own adventure where you get to explore more options depending on your objectives and audience.
What to expect from an Advanced E-commerce Solution? Check Here!
5. Transform Shopping with Augmented Reality
It is expected that around 93.3 million will use AR at least once per month in 2022 and the time is not far when these no. will touch the sky!
For online shoppers Augmented Reality could be a game-changer as it enables customers to have a virtually rich shopping experience that can change the way customers look at the product they intend to buy.
With the help of Augmented Reality, customers get to explore and understand their needs in a better way. Some of the e-commerce brands who intend to provide them a visually rich technological and shopping experience have adopted Augmented Reality which helps them in standing out from the cut-throat competition and cater a personalized shopping experience that paves the way for better online shopping.
For example, IKEA has launched an advanced reality application that allows users to test IKEA products in real-time. With the help of that app, you can visually see how that particular product will look within a space. Pretty cool, right?
Augmented Reality(AR) enables you to virtually test the product in the way that you would do during in-person shopping. That will give customers a sense of surety about the product they intend to buy as AR allows them to place a certain object, let’s say furniture or a fancy chandelier in a particular space or room to give them the exact idea of how it will look like in reality if they were to buy it. It’s like an in-person shopping experience without having to move around anywhere.
Another big example of grabbing the budding AR technology and staying ahead of the game is Lenskart. LensKart has adopted 3D technology and with the help of the same, you can virtually check how a pair of glasses will look on you not only that you can try different variations and choose the best pair for yourself.
Augmented reality is still catching pace and is quite new to the market. Most e-commerce websites haven’t offered it yet and are still pondering about it. Since a handful of people have incorporated this option it gives you an opportunity to adopt augmented reality into your brand and stay ahead of the competitive market.
6. The Growing Voice Search
Technology is flowing like the blood in the veins of e-commerce platforms. Due to the introduction of Google Assistant, Siri and Alexa, life has become a lot easier in many ways. The voice assistant provides a significant difference by making the search for anything convenient.
The simple transition from type to speak out has created a subtle difference in the search-for-anything experience by making it hassle-free.
Almost 50% of people are now researching products using voice search. And not only this, mobile voice search on Google has now been translated to 60+ languages!
Well no further convincing is required as numbers speak for themselves. By just tapping on the microphone icon in your respective search bar and speaking out the words regarding the query you are looking for you can see thousands of searches pulling out in the search engine results page.
A Lot of homes have adopted smart speakers thus enabling more people to utilise voice search to shop product order to organise their schedule and planting by just speaking it out.
Voice search has got a sudden urge in the e-commerce development trends as it paves the way for e-commerce businesses by creating opportunities for creative content.
Earlier manufacturers, or B2B businesses, were not concerned about the ever-growing e-commerce development trends and their effect on the online market. Their main focus was limited to the supply chain and increasing their sales value.
However, due to the rise of competition, evolving technology, B2B businesses must embrace the e-commerce approach.
If you opt for a new path or modify an existing one, you are bound to face the challenges; however, you can overcome those challenges and perform better with suitable step measures and strategies and grow B2B e-commerce sales.
Further, if you’d like to grow your business and require consultation on the best ecommerce platform for your business, feel free to connect with us.
Happy & safe selling!