With the onset of 2020, the eCommerce business is booming like never before. For your online business to grow and stay ahead of the competition you need to be aware of the new trends that are being implemented. Your brand and your product need to be seen by your potential customers regularly, otherwise, you might risk your consumers leaving you to find what they’re looking for in another store.
So, it is important not only to apply new trends but to improve the user experience in the process. Making sure you remain relevant is the key to a successful online business. To do that, you must be aware of the top eCommerce trends of 2020.
Smartphones and mobile devices have consumed our lives. An average person spends more than four hours a day using a smartphone. Online shopping has long transcended the time when orders were done using only a computer. Now, almost 50% of online purchases are done using a mobile device. Because of this trend, many online businesses are optimizing their online stores to improve the user experience for mobile shoppers.
If you are not doing this, you are risking losing a large number of potential customers. Mobile users are impatient: you should improve not only the visual quality of your website, but the technical performance of it as well, meaning that the load times have to be as fast as possible. Fun fact: according to some studies, if your website takes longer than 3 seconds to load, there’s a 53% chance that mobile visitors will leave.
Don’t forget about social media: on average people spend from 2 to 3 hours per day browsing their favorite social media platforms. This can be an easy way to promote your product or brand as you can use special embedded links that will send users directly to the product page, a seamless transition which can create impulsive purchases.
A major trend moving forward is considered to be the implementation of new technology into the eCommerce business.
One major piece of technology that is severely underrated and still not being actively used by eCommerce businesses is the implementation of voice recognition. The popularity of voice assistants, such as the Google Assistant, Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri is increasing by the day. As the quality of voice recognition technology improves, the utilization rate grows.
Machine learning and AI
One of the hottest eCommerce trends in 2020 continues to be Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI). Thanks to the modern algorithms, machine learning is being actively used in search and product recommendations, and throughout the whole customer journey. Machine learning is constructed in a way that it learns repetitive human behavior and adjusts the search and recommendation results to improve user experience based on their preferences.
AR and VR
One major issue eCommerce businesses faced was that their customers couldn’t see the actual product before buying it. People like to preview the products before spending their money. This possibility becomes a reality with the implementation of AR (augmented reality) and VR (virtual reality). What is it exactly? It is a computer-simulated reality which allows users to try on products without coming into contact with them using devices such as mobile phones and VR headsets. Not a lot of businesses provide this virtual technology, so this is a great opportunity to separate yourself from the competition. This will increase the level of engagement with your customers and overall make the user experience much better.
Personalized experience is becoming one of the most important trends in 2020. Online stores that apply this to the customers’ journeys will stand out significantly. To ensure users get the best possible experience, make sure to collect on-site behavior data of your customers.
The potential of SMS
Even though it isn’t a new concept at all, many companies completely ignore this. According to a study, text messages have open rates of 98 percent, while emails, on the other hand, have 20 percent. So if you send a text message to your audience, there is a high chance they will see it.
This is an interesting trend that includes influencers and reviews. When it comes to the decision whether or not to use any particular Internet service or buy a certain product, consumers prefer to rely on reviews made by other shoppers or social media influencers. Try to promote your services and products this way to show the quality of your business and build a trustworthy relationship with your customers.
Additional eCommerce business ideas
After we’ve mentioned the hottest eCommerce trends, here are a few notable general trends which you can also include in your business.
A subscription-based model
Major brands are already implementing this into their businesses, so the expansion of this trend is inevitable, mainly because customers are fond of a subscription-based service. They know exactly what they are going to get, for what time and how much it’s going to cost them. This also creates an easy way for you to manage your income and set more predictable goals. Try to find ways to incorporate this into your business, as this will create more options for the personalization and customization of user experience, which will also create a better customer service.
Be environmentally friendly
These days people are becoming more environmentally mindful and are willing to do anything they can to help the Earth. More so, they are willing to buy products or services from a company that provides social or environmental benefits. More and more companies incorporate zero-waste packaging, a system where the materials used in the package are reused or recycled, so there is no waste product. Consumers demand that none of the waste from the packaging is burned or buried, but is fully recovered.
Consumers are expecting to receive free shipping when purchasing from an online store, especially when they order an expensive product. Ecommerce businesses are recommended to offer this service to stay competitive. You can separate yourself from the competition even more by providing free returns and not only for the product but for the shipping as well. As a whole, this will build a trustworthy relationship with potential customers and maybe help persuade them to pick your webstore over another.
Ecommerce trends change and evolve over time, and it is hard to predict which are right for your business. You don’t necessarily need to follow every trend to stay relevant and competitive. Although, you must pay close attention and look to find new ways for your business to stand out. One thing is for sure: if your goal is to provide customers with the best possible experience, you are heading in the right direction.