Over the last few years, the ecommerce industry has skyrocketed. According to Statista, there are 60 million ecommerce users in the UK. This statistic alone proves that the ecommerce industry is vast, and that a large number of the population shop online.
Research by Statista and eMarketer predicts that online retail sales will reach $6.51 trillion in 2023 (worldwide), with ecommerce websites taking up 22.3% of total retail sales. Although recent forecasts have indicated a slight decline in global growth, this decline is said to be minimal in the coming years.
The ecommerce industry is constantly evolving, and online retailers must continue to adapt and innovate to drive further growth, which starts with identifying market trends. This blog will cover everything you need to know about upcoming ecommerce trends that will shape 2023 and beyond.
The rise of mobile commerce
Often labelled ‘m-commerce’, mobile commerce involves selling and purchasing via handheld devices. It is quickly becoming customers’ preferred method of shopping due to the convenience of buying their desired items on the go with ease. According to Statista, mobile devices account for 71% of retail traffic, and generate 61% of online shopping orders.
While the rise in shopping via mobile has been in progress for some time, 2023 is going to be a significant year for mobile commerce, with an estimated 8% of all online retail transactions to take place on mobile devices. The majority of customers have mobile phones, and often use them as part of a ‘pre-shop’ process in which they research products before making a purchase. Shoppers are seeking a stress-free shopping experience that gives them access to their favourite products with the touch of a screen, so it’s crucial that ecommerce businesses adapt to this shift and prioritise making their website mobile-friendly.
Increase in omnichannel selling
Omnichannel selling refers to a business having multiple channels that give their customers access to products, offers and support, be it online or in-store. It is a method of communication that aids in keeping customers connected to a brand. With the rise of mobile commerce and online shopping, trends and statistics solidify that consumers often feel most comfortable shopping online.
Omnichannel selling comes with an array of benefits; greater reach, increase in profits due to customers being able to purchase desired items at their leisure on multiple platforms, which will lead to an increase in customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Nearly 75% of buyers use multiple channels before making a purchase, so if your business doesn’t already have multiple platforms, 2023 is the perfect time to launch them. These multiple platforms could include a website, social media accounts (LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook), apps and more. Your activity on these platforms should be consistent, as should your messaging. Ultimately, the main focus is to provide your customers with a fluid online experience.
Varying payment methods
When it comes to online shopping, customers are seeking more flexible methods of payment. Having to type out a long card number every time they purchase a product isn’t the most convenient, especially if customers are doing this on the go.
No matter what your business is, your customers should always be at the heart of everything you do. With this in mind, providing them with excellent customer service is crucial. If customers have a negative experience buying from you, it’s highly unlikely that they will return or purchase something from you again.
With this in mind, many customers have shifted to using payment services such as Apple Pay, PayPal and Google Pay for a faster method of payment. Customers want to check out quickly and securely, so online retailers should be offering more payment options to accommodate this. It will also help increase sales conversion rates, and lessen the likelihood of shopping cart abandonment.
Rise in environmental consciousness
Now more than ever, customers are becoming more and more conscious of their impact on the environment, and want brands to be accountable for theirs, and adopt more sustainable practices. They are also monitoring business values, and seeking brands that prioritise carbon neutrality, fair trade, sustainability and a positive company culture.
Keep this in mind to incorporate into your brand values and messaging, but be sure not to over-promise and underdeliver to avoid ‘greenwashing’. The information you promote in regards to sustainability should be completely honest and accurate to ensure consumer’s deem your brand trustworthy.
Social media selling
Having a social media presence as a business is an integral part of creating brand awareness, and social media selling has taken this a step further. This year the medium is set to generate $30.73 billion in sales. Retailers are now able to sell their products to their customers via social media thanks to the introduction of shoppable ads.
These features are now available on Instagram, Facebook, TikTok and Twitter. Ensuring that your social media platforms are set up for this can really help businesses increase sales. According to Forbes, 68% of users have reported that they use social media to purchase their products.
It’s worth noting that social media selling may not work for every ecommerce business, so conducting research to identify the needs of your target audience is crucial.
Artificial intelligence is a powerful tool that can aid in e-commerce personalisation. It allows businesses to collect extensive customer data, which enables them to tailor product recommendations, discounts and more to suit the needs of their audience. 60% of consumers have said they would become repeat customers after being provided a personalised shopping experience, which demonstrates that AI can and will drive immense growth in 2023 and beyond.
Chatbots are also driven by AI, and are very efficient when it comes to providing rapid and accurate customer service. With the voice search component, as well as the voice-enabled shopping via voice assistants, shopping has never been easier for customers. They also have the potential to save businesses as much as 30% of customer support costs.
AI can also be used throughout the supply chain to assist in making logical decisions, which can increase profit and productivity. In 2023, we can expect to see personalised ecommerce experiences for customers, as well as algorithmically-managed supply chains for retailers.
Without customers, businesses would cease to exist. The main goals of any business should be retaining customers and nurturing those relationships to turn one-time customers into repeat customers, so it makes sense as to why subscription ecommerce is going to be one of the driving trends of 2023.
As mentioned above, customers are seeking a stress-free, convenient shopping experience, and a subscription can provide this. If a customer regularly purchases a certain product, a subscription allows them to get a repeat of that without the stress of ordering it manually every time they run out. Subscriptions offer customers a seamless experience, but bear in mind that flexibility is key to ensure customers aren’t turned-off by long-term tie-ins.
The trends listed are some of many that await businesses and entrepreneurs in the new year, so having a solid understanding of them will put you ahead of the competition.
Get started today by hiring our expert freelancers from Flow to help your business flourish in the ever-changing world of online shopping.