The year 2020 heralded with new dawns for the e-commerce industry. With the COVID-19 pandemic becoming the defining event of the year, its implications have touched every aspect of life as we know it.
Well, it includes how we shop. With social distancing becoming the new normal, malls and shopping centers see a drastic nose-dive in footfall. While this does paint a grim picture, there is a ray of hope amid all this adversity.
The pandemic has been good for the e-commerce industry. For obvious reasons, people are switching to e-commerce platforms over stores and malls. This paradigm shift in shopping trends will lead the industry to $4.9 trillion by the end of 2021. The best digital marketing companies have understood the impact of this outbreak and are changing gears to meet the growing demand for better advertising strategies.
Top 10 Emerging Ecommerce Trends to Look Out For In 2020
- Chatbots will be your new personal shopping assistants
- Automated marketing campaigns
- Artificial intelligence (AI) and big data will drive strategic decisions
- Ease of access will be the impeller behind eCommerce platforms
- Product visualization fueled with augmented reality (AR)
- Image shopping will catch up fast
- Online sales will skyrocket like never before
- Cross-channel integration will result in better engagement
- Social media will supplement eCommerce
- Shopping will become a personalized experience for users
1. Chatbots as Shopping Assistants
Chatbots have been around in the customer service industry for some time but were limited in their capacity to answer questions. A new avatar of chatbots will likely emerge in 2020, which will behave like your personal shopping assistant. This means that they can answer your questions in an intelligent and comprehensible manner.
2. Businesses Will Switch to Automated Marketing
This means that if you are in the eCommerce business, you will be able to automate your marketing campaigns based on customers’ buying behavior. 49% of companies are already using it, and the best digital marketing companies are developing tools to penetrate the market further.
3. Strategy, Driven By AI and Big Data
This year will be all about data and how it can be used to drive sales. To this effect, businesses will rely on AI to do their number crunching and visualize data in meaningful ways. It will help make strategic decisions that will help improve profitability.
4. Accessibility Is Key
The industry predicts that by 2021, 73% of purchases will be made using mobile devices. The American court’s decision dictates that eCommerce websites and other online shopping platforms must comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act, and be accessible to all. Therefore, all eCommerce platforms, mobile or web, will be easily available to all.
5. AR for Product Visualization
The brick and mortar stores will make a comeback as digital stores that allow you to visualize the product without actually stocking it. AR will enable businesses to enable customers to experience their product experience before making a purchase. For example, a furniture company will allow you to visualize new furniture in your home by using a simple mobile app. How cool is that?
6. Click and Shop
Online searches usually involve the use of words or phrases. There are times when you spot something and do not know what name to use to describe it? Enter click and shop. Now shopping is as secure as clicking a picture and searching for the image online.
Image search will be the driver of sales in the post-COVID-19 eCommerce scenario. Voice search may still be popular, but image search will soon dominate. By 2026, the image search segment is likely to reach a whopping $81.88 billion.
7. It’s Time To Go International
Businesses that are looking to expand need to consider going international. It will be the new normal going forward, and we need to wrap our heads around it fast. The good thing is that it has never been easier to sell across borders.
With multi-currency extensions easily added to your existing eCommerce platform, going international requires only a few clicks. Need more, these extensions use geolocation mapping to map multiple country tax rates and calculate tax for each sale, making accounting hassle-free.
8. Omnichannel Integration
It is no longer enough to have the best marketing strategy on your web campaign. You will have to consider going omnichannel (cross-channels). This means that a store manager can view a customer’s shopping history or that the business creates a digital profile of the customer to send follow-up e-mails, offers, and coupons. Such targeted marketing will result in better customer engagement and improve sales.
9. Social Media POS
More business will integrate their social media pages to their product pages. They will give customers the option to check out and make payment via Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. They will be able to use social wallets to make payments and enjoy seamless shopping experience. Shopping on social media is a split-second decision, and businesses need to capture that instant or end up losing the sale.
10. Personalize and Localize
With businesses catering to an international shoppers’ community, they need to make sure that they capture the essence of the local community of the customers. Localization is another way of personalization, and people engage better with brands that understand their backgrounds.
Maps, GPS, and customer IP addresses allow businesses to detect the customer’s location and immediately switch to local mode. When you know where your customer is located, you can provide tailor-made deals to meet their requirements. This means you can engage better with your customers.
Over two decades have passed since the first-ever online sale was made. The industry has grown exponentially since that day, and thanks to the COVID-19 outbreak, it shows no signs of stopping. The pandemic has altered how we shop, and you need to know what to expect to revamp your strategy accordingly.
The trends discussed above are what you will see in 2020 and beyond. It’s time to reconsider your business plans to meet the emerging trends in eCommerce. The best digital marketing companies can help you overhaul your business and marketing strategy to take these trends head-on.