The world of e-commerce has proved itself as an ever-expanding avenue for career growth or for making money online. A 1.6 trillion dollars industry on a global scale with an annual growth of 20%, e-commerce is slated to reach 2.86 trillion dollars this year. So, let your business make money for you in this dynamic industry. It lets you escape the rat race and become financially free.
It seems inevitable to recapitulate the outcomes of last year, in order to better understand the forthcoming trends.
- The sales, both retail and wholesale, got higher
- The competition got fiercer
- The markets got broader
Now, what trends can we expect from this money-minting industry, for this year? Let us take a look at some of the trends of the eCommerce industry that we need to watch out for.
- The year of the mobile tipping point – we have witnessed the mobile story. It gets 70% of the traffic but sales through mobile devices have failed to match up to the traffic with sales recorded to be only 20%. This shows the inhibitions of customers to do a transaction on mobile devices. So, in 2018 mobile optimization is going to be at the forefront of considerations for the ongoing year. With at least 27% of ecommerce sales coming from mobile, companies need to prioritize mobile friendly platforms and utilize them as the bridge between offline and online worlds. It is also necessary for the companies to get a way out to track the status of a customer.
- The year of personalized experiences – all stages of sales funnel are going to be personalized and assistive this year, in order to be more relevant to the customers. It is going to be an year of personalized content, with an emotional chord in the background. This personal, intimate touch is certainly going to prove a boon for the marketing strategy as humans are slave to their emotions and to play that card is a sure shot way to win. It has been a buzzword for years and 94% people feel that it’s crucial. 2018 will see more creative ways of delivering a personalized experience. Personalized messaging is one of the ways to nudge people about a product that might invoke interest in them. This will help provide a visually appealing content to the customers. This ensures widening the customer base as companies can now understand the individual behaviours and suggest them products accordingly. This enriches the customer’s experience also and benefits the company sales. Ultimately it’s about using the right campaign tactics to enhance the customer journey. So you need to think carefully as too much of nudging can even put off many customers. So, start small if you need to and then build a roadmap towards data integration and personalisation.
- The year of UGC – big area of growth is going to be user generated content (UGC) which is 97% more likely to convert. The impact of peer review and adoptions from peer groups massively helps drive conversion rates. Thus, a majority of companies are relying on UGC. It helps consumers feel at ease with the decision they are making. Gen Z and millennials, which is the next generation of customers, value it the most. It appeals to this generation as UGC gives them a practical and thus, more realistic approach. 2018 is going to be all about collecting, curating and diversifying. So, is this product going to be significant for a majority of people? Will it help people in some way or the other? What is the product’s purpose? are going to be some of the questions that will drive company sales to new heights. Customers need to consider going beyond reviews, putting a video after analysing all the aspects, especially emotional connect, of a product. Users can collect data from online and offline sources using mobile. People can share selfies from an event or let people be a part of a live stream from a brand campaign.
- The year of chat – it involves enriching the emotional experience to drive more participation. Things like live chat or personalized chat feature make shoppers love it. In fact 92% satisfaction rate has been observed with this feature. However, here lies a challenge as 51% people expect 24/7 availability. 2018 will be all about seeing how far chatbots can replicate the live chat experience. So,the key is to be realistic and to be simple. Don’t promise what you can’t deliver and ultimately disappoint customers. Make sure to make the chat experience enriching for them and ask yourself, what are the customers going to gain from this chat? How is it going to help them? Find out their requirements and preferences in order to meet their expectations.
- The year of flexibility – a number of companies or brands are looking to break the typical or conventional roles that they have been typecast in. Being more variable in how they fulfill deliver, how they put together their pricing models is a way to differentiate themselves from the highly competitive market. For instance, Amazon has gained a lot from same day delivery feature as it includes additional charges. This happened because it’s not always about getting cheap stuff but about getting quality service whenever required as analysed by Amazon. 29% of people are more willing to pay additional charges for same day delivery. Whereas 83% would wait longer if delivery is cheaper. So, basically you need to consider all needs. Thus you need to be more agile according to the varying needs of customers. 2018 will see more choice in fulfillment. For example, the try and buy feature offered by some of the online shopping platforms has been introduced to give their customers a valuable experience where their need is first priority. This creates more opportunities for repeat purchases. This helps ensure company’s longevity in the market.
- The year of no borders – there’s going to be no dearth of global opportunities for companies. Market globalization is,however, like a double edged sword, it opens new avenues along with having to deal with more competition. The cost of entering into new or foreign markets has never been lower and even the cost of merging or in case of acquisitions also, the cost is considerably lower. It provides an opportunity to test new concepts and creates a new lease of life. Brands which face saturation in their home territory often capitalise on this trend. Of you are looking for growth, China is driving the boom in global ecommerce retail sales.