Ecommerce Trends in 2020 – What To Expect
When Amazon was launched in July 1994, little did Jeff Bezos know that a revolution is about to begin that will change the landscape of trade and business. Today, almost two and a half decades later, eCommerce is a trillion dollar industry and the largest shareholder of this eCommerce rat race.
Consumers are using the internet for almost everything, and it is no more a luxury. Even for making an offline purchase, buyers often check online reviews and ratings from reliable sites.
With new ideas and shift in demand, the trends are changing. But what does this mean for the business owners? Simple, they need to keep with these. So what are the eCommerce trends in 2020? What lies in the future of online trade?
1. Online Vs Retail: Bridging The Battle
Although a staggering 79% of people buy goods online, most businesses are slowly starting to realize an important factor when it comes to consumer behavior; try and test. Nothing beats the connection felt by the customer by the look and feel of the product, no matter how well written the description and the pictures are online.
In spite of what the above statistics suggest, 85% of consumers prefer to shop at brick and mortar stores. This explains why more than 70% of people prefer physical Amazon stores over amazon.com.
Keeping a number of convenience based points like the urgency of the product, easier returns, no shipping charges, a number of online stores started selling their products in physical stores.
We know you are thinking of Amazon, but they are not new to this trend. Brands like Missguided, Snowe, along with scores more are just two of the giants following the online-offline trend.
These offline stores are letting customers eliminate the pain points they face while making online purchases. The only reasonable conclusion here is that online-offline linkage will be an important part of eCommerce trends 2020.
2. Social Shopping On The Rise
If you are familiar with the term insta-shopping, you should be knowing how Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest are changing the social commerce game. Rolling out the “buy” button, these platforms are making most of the fact that nearly 90% of people with access to the internet have an account on at least one social platform.
In 2017 alone, sales through social media accounted for more than $6.5 billion. And given that having an account is free of cost, most brands use these platforms for advertisement in the form of posts with buying link below.
It is no surprise that social commerce is growing steadily with more and more brand pouring into the online marketing game. As new followers are joining every day, the customer base is increasing along with the demand. Smartphones are also becoming cheaper and readily available, which is another huge pro.
As the very nature of social media is to connect people, users are much more likely to share content and tag their friends if and when they like something. As this is creating an opportunity for small businessmen and startups, transaction via social media is an eCommerce trend in 2020, and the future of eCommerce.
3. B2B On The Rise
Expected to grow twice as higher than B2C by the end of 2020, eCommerce sales of business to business is expected to hit 1.18 trillion dollars in the States alone. By the end of 2021, it is expected to reach 1.21 trillion dollars.
Though much more complicated than B2C, it is becoming more and more seamless by the day.
Given that nearly half of the buyers are millennials, personalization is given a huge priority. More than 50 percent of buyers want improvements like quote management, price bargaining, simple, easy ordering, among many others.
Most of the B2B find acquisition through recommendation, social media has lately been playing a huge role – shifting the B2B to a more B2C like behaviour. Other factors include channels like trade event, cold emails, word of mouth, and advertising.
Although there are several areas that need improvement, it may safely be concluded that the future of eccommerce lies in B2B that has a huge potential and will hopefully show improvements.
Artificial intelligence is undoubtedly one of the biggest changes brought about by technology that is slowly changing the way people interact with technological devices. Amidst the pros, the cons, and the fears of “taking over”, bots have been used extensively by all businesses.
And why not? After all, this technology eliminates the need for human assistance and saves money which would have otherwise used to pay people. As machine learning is improving, so are the service provided by these. Bots are becoming more human-like and personalised.
From answering a question to processing a request, the uses of chatbots are many. As the response is instant, users do not have to wait for long which is loved by them. No matter what the sector is, business owners can’t seem to get enough of this technology.
You can ask Alexa, Amazon’s personalised bot to track an order for you, place a new one, and track the past ones. Cortana, Google assistance, Siri, are other big players in this game while the debate of the best bot will never end, we can only tell you one thing: it is the future of eCommerce and won’t fade anytime soon.
5. Better Personalization
If you have visited a clothing website for the first time and asked for information like gender, age, style preference, and so on, you know what we mean. Though this is not very new, you may expect it to be used more extensively by services.
By using information like location, browsing history, previously bought items among many others, businesses are doing everything they can to show more relevant products to their customers.
Predictive analysis has turned out to be extremely useful for services. If you see an ad of something you browsed previously, while scrolling down your Facebook feed, that’s personalization right there. Amazon’s feature that tells you what other customers have bought is also a personalization tool. A third of all customers have ended their relationship with a business due to lack of personalization.
In spite of all the criticism this technology has received for breaching a user’s privacy, the application of artificial intelligence is growing popular by the day and is showing no signs of slowing down. Talking of e-commerce trends 2020, this is definitely a huge hit.
6. Smartphones Are Winning
We will not make cliched points on how smartphones have revolutionised so much in the past two decades. Instead, let’s talk about why retailers are focusing on creating mobile-friendly solutions for their users. Smartphones are definitely the future of eCommerce.
Buyers want the convenience of shopping right at their fingertips. While accounting for more than 175.4 billion dollars in revenue by the end of 2020, it is expected to grow as smart devices and the internet are becoming more easily accessible.
Millennials are constantly fidgeting with their smartphones in public spaces like metros, buses, and parks. Taking advantage of this behaviour, app-based shopping services are popping up every day. As mobile screens are getting bigger, so are the opportunities of businesses. Apart from app only shopping sites, web-based pages are also taking providing their customers with a mobile-friendly option.
Related read: 7 Ways To Optimize Your Mobile Ecommerce App Strategy
7. AR And VR
Virtual and augmented reality are changing the way in which people interact. It has significantly impacted the dynamics of eCommerce.
Retailers can now showcase their products using a virtual showroom. To some extent, it eliminates the need for people to visit a physical showroom. This is not just convenient, but fun at the same time.
Consumers will be able to visualise what the product looks like without having to read all the tedious descriptions.
With more than 450 individual companies claiming to be VR technology startups, the future of AR and VR looks promising. More businesses are expected to use this technology to attract customers and this is not just an eCommerce trend 2020, but the future of eCommerce.
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