E-commerce is at an all-time high. Lockdowns, travel bans, and retail closures forced the consumer online which in turn persuaded the retailers to resort to online commerce. By 2022, e-retail revenues will grow to $6.54 trillion, up from $3.53 trillion in 2019. These are just not random numbers, they are well supported by the fact that the businesses that didn’t have a website before 2020 have suddenly come up online. The ones which are not able to build their websites are switching to ways like selling on marketplaces which provide them with end to end services but also drive out heavy commissions from their pockets. To better compete with marketplaces and retail giants, brands are also investing in richer, more personalised experiences for their customers. Every year several new trends emerge in e-commerce that can help your business grow exponentially, 2021 is no different.
Let’s watch out top five e-commerce trends for 2021:
1. Usage of Artificial Intelligence: We usually come across various e-commerce websites which capture our preferences based on the purchase history and suggest products accordingly. This is where artificial intelligence comes into play. This helps to provide a more personalised approach towards the consumers which compel them to make a purchase instantly. As concepts such as machine learning and chat bots become more mainstream, brands can leverage AI to yield real business impact. AI can also help with features like voice search and inventory predictions to make shopping more interactive.
2. Omnichannel selling becomes the new norm: Omnichannel selling refers to providing customers with a seamless shopping experience via different channels and devices. Brands are well aware of the fact that the consumers find the content to be more convenient on tablets and smartphones instead of desktops and laptops. Using analytical tools like Finteza, the most convenient shopping channel can easily be identified. Along with selling through different devices, brands are also finding different ways to sell through various social media channels like Facebook and Instagram. It can be enticing to want to be everywhere, but you should start by focusing on the channels and devices where your customers go the most and sell to them there.
3. AR/VR will enhance customer experience: In online shopping, we always miss that touch and feel of offline shopping which doesn’t let us trust the product fully. To overcome this, AR/VR are potentially the best possible ways. These methods ease shopping for the customers by letting them know how a particular product would look on them even before they buy the product. This not only helps in increasing sales or the conversion rates but reduces the return % as well as the customer has already tried the product virtually. Companies like Lenskart and IKEA are using this methodology to compel a huge chunk of customers for the purchase. It is estimated that more than 120,000 stores will be using AR technologies to offer customers a rich buying experience by 2022.Live Video Shopping: Social media consumption is rigorously increasing day by day among the consumers and it won’t slow down in near future. There was a time when social media was all about content but with Facebook Live, Instagram reels, and Snapchat, it has altogether changed the ecosystem. Brands have already started to get a lot of value by selling their products through live or recorded videos as it provides them a new dimension to market their products. Along with this, there are companies like Baaz which help you enable live video shopping on your existing websites with a bunch of features like catalogue management, order processing, shipping, etc.
4. Adapting to Dynamic Pricing: You might be selling one of the best products but if you don’t price it correctly, you won’t be able to generate enough revenue. Usually, ecommerce websites set a certain price for their products and do not change them which hampers the sale. Choosing the accurate and competitive price for your product is very important. But the question here is, how do we move to the dynamic pricing model? Use dynamic pricing software to determine the best price for your products. These tools provide real-time insights into your competitors’ prices, market demand, and perceived value of your products to determine the optimal cost.
All the e-commerce businesses must adapt themselves to these latest trends if they want to dominate the markets. There were times when 2 out of 10 stores had resorted to online selling but now all the 10 stores are competing neck to neck. Winner is the one who accepts the flip in technology and adapts to the changing world. Though 2020 was a difficult year, yet there were opportunities to be seized in e-commerce. Even if you missed them, no worries, 2021 is going to be more memorable indeed- but hopefully for more positive reasons!