Top 10 E-commerce Trends 2020
Did you know that e-commerce sales accounted for almost $3.53 trillion across the globe last year?
All businesses involved in e-commerce have access to a wide range of tools and opportunities that can maximise sales and improve customer engagement. Choosing which of these to invest in isn’t always easy, and taking a big risk on a new technology may not be the best decision for your business. We’ve put together this guide to help you make the right choices for your organisation, identifying the top ten e-commerce trends that we advise your business to get on board with.
Optimising your business for E-commerce
1. Optimise for Google Shopping. Google is an increasingly important online marketplace, and optimising to make the most of this involves integrating your e-commerce platform with Google Shopping. This is very simple to set up and means that your newly created product listing ads will be reflected in the SERPs on the Shopping tab when appropriate searches are made. This is a simple way to increase conversions and we recommend it as a particularly helpful tool for e-commerce optimisation right now.
2. Make the most of social media. Social media shopping is a big deal, and if your business is not optimised for this, you could be losing out on conversions every day. With new features appearing all the time, including Instagram Checkout and the ‘buy’ button on Facebook, social media is set to become central to e-commerce. Social media has long provided vital advertising platforms, and this has recently been extended with the opportunity for direct purchasing. Businesses can now connect their online stores to social media sites to enable direct selling, and this means making the most of social platforms that your potential customers already love. As a business, you should be adopting a shopping-focused approach to your social media strategy to boost your customer engagement and conversion rates at the same time.
3. Optimise for mobile. Websites that are optimised for mobile usage have been leading the way for many years now, but recent changes have created safer and easier ways for users to make purchases using their smartphones and tablets, and this means that consumer trust in the process has increased. Mobile sales account for more than half of all e-commerce sales, and this figure is predicted to continue to rise in the future. Tools such as QR codes have become more accessible and are rising in popularity, and it is important to ensure that your business is making the most of opportunities to use these. Working with a specialist digital marketing agency can help you to choose the most appropriate tools for a business such as yours, and embed them into your digital marketing strategy seamlessly, for the best outcomes.
4. Prepare for AR and VR. Recent developments in Artificial Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are about to take the world of e-commerce by storm, allowing customers to ‘try’ products before they order online. Some businesses are already offering AR and VR services to allow their customers to try on products such as glasses or clothing before they buy, and large companies like IKEA are jumping on board, using these tools to enable customers to ‘test’ furniture in their own houses before they commit to an unsuitable purchase. These tools make the customer experience more personal, and they are proving popular so far, so if your business can benefit from them, we would suggest embracing the technology as soon as possible.
5. Create easy payment options. Making the process of online shopping as easy as possible for your customers means offering flexible payment options and embracing subscription models which are very popular with many customers. The key is to make your services and products as accessible to your audience as you can, and this means looking at what they want and incorporating it into your model.
6. Engage with AI tools. Across digital marketing platforms, we are seeing that businesses are engaging with AI tools that create a better customer experience and optimise processes such as pricing, discounting and special offers, as well as customer services. Artificial intelligence (AI) is increasingly important in analysing customer behaviour, and businesses that are using these tools already are seeing great results.
7. Optimise for voice search. Voice search is one of the fastest-growing trends at present, and websites that are optimised to meet this demand will leave competitors in the dust. This is connected with mobile optimisation since voice search is often used with mobile devices, and we can help you catch up with voice search for e-commerce.
8. Create customisable products. Personalised and customisable products are always a popular option, and customers are increasingly prepared to pay for products that are unique in this way. Technology has made it easier than ever for customers to upload pictures and text to create customised products. These personalised products can be an excellent way to develop customer loyalty, and encourage repeat business, and this is a great tip for improving your e-commerce opportunities in 2020.
9. Adopt an environmentally conscious mindset. Studies show that between 50% and 90% of those who purchase products and services online say that concerns about the environment have an impact on their purchasing decisions, and this sends a clear message that businesses that seek out more sustainable practices are ahead of the game. Environmental awareness is growing every day, and consumers are demanding that the businesses they engage with are working to combat climate change and make a positive difference. Sourcing fairly traded products that have a minimal impact on the environment will help to make a difference to the planet and the e-commerce environment, and you can help to reduce the carbon footprint of your business at the same time as appealing to a wider audience. Using recycled or biodegradable materials is a popular idea, and some businesses are taking innovative measures to reduce or replace their packaging materials with more environmentally sound choices as well.
10. Pay attention to shipping options. Customers don’t want to pay high shipping rates, and this can account for large numbers of lost sales as analytics reveal that potential customers leave websites when shipping costs are revealed, even if they have already put items in carts or baskets. Large retailers such as Amazon and Etsy have introduced lower and faster shipping policies in an attempt to engage customers and improve conversion rates, and this can be problematic for smaller businesses that cannot afford to offer free shipping and often lose sales as a consequence. Some retailers simply increase their prices to cover shipping, and this can be an area in which monitoring outcomes and adjusting certain factors can reveal the most successful strategy for your website.
How Brexit may influence e-commerce in Ireland
It is worth considering that, over the next few years, Brexit may have a big influence on online shopping in Ireland and the rest of the EU. EU-based consumers are protected by EU laws that safeguard their rights when buying from the UK, including the right to return goods. It is not yet clear how Brexit will affect the rights of consumers outside the UK, because the effects will likely take many months and years to manifest, but surveys have indicated that many people will be more inclined to buy products from other EU countries instead of the UK. Taxes and duties may also be affected by Brexit, so you should check out any implications for your customers and your business if you deal with the UK in any capacity.
E-commerce and your digital marketing strategy:
E-commerce is a complex area to understand, and your decisions here can make a big impact on your business. Of course, any changes to your digital marketing strategy should be made to create a better and more personal online experience, and when you make changes that will improve your customers’ experience of shopping with you, you will build brand loyalty and conversion rate at the same time. Your business should be constantly evolving, and this means embracing new tools that can take you to the next level. Here at ePresence, we can help you to do just that.
Embrace the future of e-commerce with ePresence
Here at ePresence, Digital Marketing Agency in Cork, we understand the world of e-commerce, and we can help you to make the most of these tools to revolutionise your business online. We know what works and what does not, and we have excellent digital marketers and SEO experts on our team who can help you unleash your full potential.
We work with our clients in partnerships that reflect the unique nature of every business, tailoring our services to suit you and your ethos for a better brand image. We can help you with every aspect of your digital marketing, from a full audit of your website and services to your social media campaigning, and we look forward to working with you to create great outcomes for your customers and your business.