During the Covid-19 situation, many businesses and industries faced huge losses, and several filed for bankruptcy. However, eCommerce platforms observed a sudden global shift of trends with lasting consequences. These trends have dramatically re-shaped retail services and today, we’ll discuss top eCommerce trends in 2021.
Did you know that from Mar’20 to Apr’20, Shopify saw dramatic growth in the new stores; estimated to be around 62%?
New stores were eager to get an online presence and that was a situation when digital showrooms became a necessity.
From groceries to big brands like Heinz- who used to relied on traditional network of connections- got an eCommerce store.
Housewives who used to run to a local store to purchase items, now either buy online or order a pick-up. That’s a perfect example of upcoming eCommerce trends!
Previously, students who used to fastly race to schools, colleges, or universities now prepare for their exams online. They even buy books, stationeries, and other study material online from a store.
The digital promotional ads for products or gadgets have also impacted teenagers and other age groups. Now, they prefer to buy items online via digital stores.
Employees working from homes now find it convenient to add items to the cart, place an overseas shipment order, chat with an agency representative, and much more!
Undoubtedly, the pandemic situation has heightened different types of uncertainties, but one trend has become clear: it has vastly accelerated digital platforms.
The below figure represents significant growth rates in popular platforms that have reshaped customer behavior and business operations.
Source: Authors computations using Google Trends data
Over time, many small and big companies have joined eCommerce platforms to stay ahead of their competition. And as a result, many eCommerce trends emerged. Some of these trends tend to prevail for a longer duration and they are given as below:
Popular eCommerce Trends in 2021
The currency eCommerce business world is turning out to be progressively competitive. To remain in front of the competition, online business trends should be continually checked. Regardless of how developed your online business store is, if you don’t stay aware of eCommerce trends, you’ll risk falling definitely behind.
You need to continually look forward to assuring future achievement. As we move into 2021-22, you need to know these patterns to use them. That is the reason it’s imperative that eCommerce trends and patterns are analyzed and welcomed in a timely way. By doing this you can drive your online business forward, and stay in front of your competition.
Here are some of the popular eCommerce trends in 2021:
- Chatbots and more for better communication
- Payment Gateways & more ways to pay
- AR (Augmented Reality) – a game-changer
- Knowing customers through AI
- On-site personalization
- The rise in mobile shopping
- Buying through Social media platforms
Let’s discuss each one of them in a broader way!
Chatbots & more for better communication
Chatbots are one of the popular eCommerce trends that have been on the rise for a while now, and we’re watching this one. With more consumers spending time on phones, we’re seeing a lot more people using chatbots to get instant results to queries and get in-detailed information when they’re in discovery mode.
Chatbots communicate with online customers as an in-store sales executive would do. Today’s customers need to have the option to discover and purchase an item in only a couple of clicks. But if they can’t, they get disappointed. This is the place where a chatbot can step in and save the deal.
Chatbots are embedded with hundreds of unique intents to answer queries around the products, services, and offers. Thus, allowing a raving customer experience and boosting sales.
Payment Gateways & more ways to pay
Clients have personalized requirements and needs with regard to payment methods. However, they may drop a likely deal if they can’t pay how they need on an online business site. Offering a wide variety of payment approaches is a decent method to boost conversion rates on mobile phones.
Also, if clients can save their payment information on your site, they’ll have the option to quickly check out when they make a purchase.
Due to the Covid scenario, its impact on customers’ behavior is apparent. Due to this global epidemic, the majority of shoppers prefer to purchase items via card, net banking, or digital wallet platforms.
According to PWC, an increase in online Payments volume can be seen as transactions go online. Further, major banks have been informed in India to allow UPI gateway as a cash withdrawal.Source
Trend of Subscriptions
Among various eCommerce trends, one more trend is gaining a huge response from customers and is being opted well.
Present days are witnessing the remarkable popularity of subscriptions. It not only allows getting new customers but also allows to regain the lost ones.
Nowadays, a variety of subscriptions are boosting and their convenience is appealing for online shoppers.
Instead of designing a plethora of strategies to target and acquire new clients, subscriptions give a pre-loaded inventory to eCommerce businesses. During sales, these subscriptions become a valuable asset for a business.
Many researchers reported that the eCommerce market subscription has grown by more than 100% annually since 2013. They believe that the pandemic situation pushed the growth even faster. This powerful growth has attracted leading Consumer Good Companies to explore this space, such as P&G, Sephora, Dollar Shave Club (2016), and Walmart- all have initiated new subscription businesses.Source
Many giants believe that more online companies will continue to use the subscription services to widen clients’ range and to get larger purchases.
AR (Augmented Reality) – a game changer
Increased reality (AR) has been a complete “game-changer” for the electric commerce (eCommerce) business and has brought a revolution in eCommerce trends. With this sort of innovation, customers can genuinely see the thing they’re looking for, which assists them with settling on a purchasing choice.
AR truly changes the shopping experience in explicit businesses, for eg., fashion & interior decor since the client can improve the feel for the thing without seeing it face to face.
Certain big companies like Pizza Hut are trying to give a realistic experience to their users through Augmented Reality. Recently the firm ran an AR-based campaign on childhood games. This AR campaign attracted many customers and gave a boom to the company during the pandemic. Following this, the chain saw an 8% increase in same-store sales in its 4th Quarter 2020 report.Source
Top online stores using AR – Sephora Beauty Mirror, Converse Sampler, Nike SNKRS, Gap Dressing Room, Burberry, L’Oreal, Gucci, Crocs, and many more!
It is believed that by 2022, over 120,000 stores will be using Augmented Reality (AR) technologies to offer a much better experience to the customers.Source
Knowing Customers through AI
Go anywhere today; the essence of Artificial Intelligence is scattering in every sector.
The use of AI or Artificial Intelligence and ML (Machine Learning) has made it feasible for online customers to have automated, customized shopping encounters.
Artificial Intelligence is persistently gathering information on how a client shops when they purchase a product and what they’re searching for in a product or the services. It’s a piece of innovation that truly can’t replicate in-store.
Because of AI, online Shopify store owners can embrace such countless freedoms. What’s more, they are essential for client base development and maintenance.
The popularity of AI in eCommerce businesses can be seen on various eCommerce stores and a perfect example will be the partnership of Google Express and Walmart. This partnership is more about planning for the future of eCommerce. Through their tie-up, customers won’t only see voice search but will also experience voice shopping.
In the long run, Walmart clients will actually want to purchase items via looking and shopping with Google’s AI-powered assistant- Google Home.Source
Voice search is just one of the methods in which AI will affect the future of online business.
The income produced from the use of AI programming will rise from $1.38 billion every 2016 to $36.8 billion worldwide by 2025.
Of Course in the real eCommerce world, having real sales executives who would look for your needs and demands won’t be possible. Instead, online retail owners use AI & other mechanisms to find the actual needs of a customer. These needs are based on their interests and initial shopping behavior.
The growing advantages of artificial intelligence in eCommerce have permitted the e-commerce businesses to raise their engagement rate, conversion and reduce time transactions.
Truly, all sorts of buyers- either B2B or B2C look for a personalized online shopping experience- one that meets their specific needs.
Offering on-site personalized experiences is believed to display a strong income, with one investigation discovering it had a 25% income lift for retailers scaling advanced personalization abilities.Source
Writing personalized emails specifying a customer’s name and focusing on his interests will have a huge impact on your sales and revenue.
The rise in Mobile Shopping
Apparently, around 79% of customers shop online through their smartphones.
Due to the pandemic situation, the growth of mobile commerce has rapidly increased. The majority of the people were idle at home and this was the time when they began to use their smartphones for purchasing groceries, clothes, and other accessories. The need to stay protected from others allowed them to purchase fruits, vegetables, and their daily needs from online e-stores.
Researchers estimate that total m-commerce spend will reach USD 3.8 trillion in 2022 By 2022, there will be more than 2.7 billion mobile payment users in the world.
Mobile shopping permits clients to make buys from any place, which is essential in this day and age. Nonetheless, if your online business webpage isn’t responsive on mobile or through web applications, you’ll be passing up huge freedoms. Customers who are portable clients need additional comfort, in addition to the capacity to pay carefully.
According to the stats, it is believed that future customers will shop more through their smartphones instead of going out and purchasing products.
Buying through Social media platforms
Are you wondering what the future of eCommerce looks like? Well, it can be seen on social media platforms.
Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Instagram are on-move to shape the future of your eCommerce business.
Social media has not only changed the way we used to live our daily life but it has also impacted the way we used to buy.
As per a record, 1.73 billion users access the Facebook platform on daily basis; with an increase of 11% every year. The amount spent on all social media platforms has grown since the pandemic situation.Source
Facebook’s “Buy” button is playing a significant role in eCommerce. Using this option, one can quickly and easily check out without leaving Facebook. Additionally, platforms like Shopify, encourage store owners to link their stores on such social media platforms.
Instagram, on the other hand, is actively modifying itself and presenting eCommerce features in its platform. The latest feature offered by this platform is Instagram Checkout which means buyers can directly purchase items, products, or services through Instagram.
Now, customers can flexibly shop their desired items from their smartphones.
Top brands like Adidas, H&M, Dior, NARS, ColourPop, Nike, and others are actively using this feature of Instagram. This is a perfect example of the eCommerce trend that will persistently flourish with time.
With the improvement in innovation and changes in customer shopping behavior, you need to watch out for these eCommerce trends in 2021. Whichever online trend and pattern you choose to use, do it fully aim at further improving the shopping experience for your clients, and building a long-lasting and transparent connection with them.
Take your eCommerce business to a higher level, by advancing with it one next to the other, and employing these online patterns.