2021: Biggest e-commerce trends to follow

If you want to gain more traction for your ecommerce brand, drive more traffic, and convert that traffic into buyer customers, it’s important to understand the latest trends shaping the industry.

Given the impact of COVID, 2020 is an important year for e-commerce. The pandemic has accelerated changes in multiple verticals, and as we enter 2021 and beyond, this acceleration is expected to continue in some way.

Here are 10 e-commerce trends to watch out for in 2021:

1. Customers will buy from the marketplace instead of e-commerce stores
2. Online shopping will not be limited to B2C products
3. Self-service platforms will increase in popularity
4. Video purchases through social media advertising
5. Omnichannel sales will become the norm
6. Analytics will prosper
7. Influencers will become brand partners
8. AI will become less manual and more beneficial
9. Personalization will go beyond buying to build links
10. Green consumerism will become more and more popular

 

1. Customers will buy from marketplaces instead of e-commerce stores

Before 2020, companies that don’t even have a website suddenly went online during the pandemic. However, consumer behavior continues to favor convenience. Many newer e-commerce companies lack the back-end infrastructure to cope with the surge in traffic and transportation demand currently imposed on them.

On the other hand, companies such as Amazon and Wal-Mart have the experience and infrastructure needed to meet today’s customers. Other niche markets, such as Etsy, continue to grow to accommodate new digital entrepreneurs.

How to attain an edge

Although it is important to increase your digital image through a website or e-commerce store, the most important thing is the convenience of your customers.

If you are just starting out or your brand is not well known, then become a seller in the main market of your industry. In this way, you can take advantage of the high traffic, fast shipping and overall experience of these large companies.

However, please be careful not to rely solely on these markets. When you sell products on sites such as Amazon, you do not own customer data, which may limit your brand’s growth. The solution is to attract visitors to your website by providing them with limited edition products that create urgency and scarcity.

2. Online shopping will not be limited to B2C products

Disruption is not just a buzzword in 2020, because companies are accelerating the pace of digital transformation amid global changes. Consumers who have no other choice turn to e-commerce for everything they need in their daily lives.

Suddenly, food, fashion, and gadgets are no longer the only items people can buy online and deliver to their doorstep. Groceries, furniture, and even car parts have been added to the list.
As people return to their normal lives, these changes in shopping habits may slow down slightly, but they will certainly not stop.

Turning e-commerce into something people rely on, not just convenience, means that brands must adjust their strategies accordingly.

How to attain an edge

Whether you are a manufacturer, B2B or anyone else, you can start selling D2C or D2B.
The products you sell can now be purchased online. You just need to make it easy for your customers to buy from you.

You can first create an online catalog containing all your products. Next, expand the catalog with relevant content to create an easy-to-use shopping experience.

3. Self-service platforms will continue to be popular

It used to be a long and laborious process to start surfing the Internet. However, 2020 has changed the narrative and showed us how quickly small businesses and individual entrepreneurs can achieve digital transformation of their businesses.

Rather than taking the expensive route of using an ecommerce store for the first time, it’s best to look for a platform that can help you get started quickly.

If your brand is already established, consider creating template-based content to help your audience quickly understand how to use your product or solve common industry problems.

4. Video purchases through social media advertising

Consumption of social networks will not decrease in 2021 and brands will start advertising in different ways on channels such as TikTok and Instagram. Brands have started to gain a lot of value by placing ads in stories on apps like Instagram and Snapchat, so this is just the next step in developing social media sales.

This year, we saw Facebook launch an Instagram store, Shopify cooperated with TikTok. In 2021, we will see what brands can do with these changes and the way video provides another dimension when it comes to marketing their products.

If you are a D2C brand, record videos of your featured products and post them on social media platforms where you can find your audience more.

Your videos can range from unpacking videos to tutorials or operating videos. Product pictures can even be turned into slides, and user-generated content can be republished to take advantage of the video boom.

5. Omni-channel sales will become the norm.

Most companies already know that customers want to view content in multiple ways. Tablet computers, mobile phones and desktop computers are just the beginning. As we mentioned in other trends, brands are looking for new ways to sell products through social media.

Amazon Pinpoint and Amazon Personalize are two Amazon Web Services (AWS) products that enable brands to improve the customer experience and communicate with customers through multiple channels.

How to attain an edge

Start by getting to know your customers in depth and understanding what is most important to them and the channels they frequently visit.

Today’s customers are looking for a consistent shopping experience across multiple channels. To facilitate this, brands must use a headless commerce architecture to deliver content and products to any screen or device with the help of APIs.

It may be tempting to want to be everywhere, but you need to first target the channels your customers use most often, and then sell to them there.

6. Analytics will prosper

In the field of e-commerce, customer data will continue to gain value. Many brands focus on the basic but important metrics provided to them, such as the click-through rate of a particular campaign and conversion metrics that indicate where most of the traffic and sales are coming from.

However, as we enter 2021, many people will discover data capabilities and become more granular.

How to attain an edge

It is crucial to view the data you currently have about customers and e-commerce stores. Can you gather enough information from him/her? If not, see if you can upgrade to another level that allows you to really delve into the data.

If you can’t, look at other analytics platforms that can help you, because better data can produce better results, for example:

– Segment audiences by location, age and gender, shopping habits, total spending, etc.
– Determine which channels bring your customers to your store.
– Understand which content converts the most.
– Generate out-of-the-box reports.

– integrates with your CRM, CMS, etc. to understand your ecommerce business in a 360 degree view.

As Bhargava pointed out, “This will take the ability to customize activities to a new level. You can apply it to products. Know what is the trend, what is not, what is the largest amount of refund or return, this is a good way to to keep abreast of changes in consumer demand. Saving inventory costs will provide e-commerce businesses with more marketing and development resources. ”

7. Influencers Will Become Brand Partners

For the upcoming years, most ecommerce brands have used influencers to capitalize on their large audiences. According to the Influencer Marketing Center, the influencer marketing industry is expected to reach $ 9.7B in 2020.

Reach out to influencers in your market segment and ask them to help you create content for your business:

– List the value of Check off a list of local or micro influencers who share yours.
– build a relationship with them by helping them expand their audience in the first place and / or provide free merchandise.
– Give them the freedom to create however they want to create.

Pro tip: Take advantage of new features on social media platforms, because algorithms will reward the adoption of these new features. For example, scrolls on Instagram get a more natural impact than regular posts or stories. Therefore, whenever a new feature appears, keep up with the trend and experiment.

Influencer content does not need to be limited to B2C commercials, because the goal should be to provide value to your customers.

For example, the Dell Luminaries podcast discusses IT transformation and business growth through discussions with technical experts.

8. Artificial intelligence will become less manual and more beneficial

In the past few years, many benefits of artificial intelligence were realized earlier in e-commerce, but in 2021, great changes will take place.

As they become mainstream chatbots for concepts such as machine learning, brands can use artificial intelligence to drive real business impact.

For example, artificial intelligence can already be used to make recommendations on the products that a customer should buy next based on the customer’s history. Brands can also use concepts such as voice search to position their products in front of customers. Artificial intelligence will also be able to help the back end and help with inventory forecasting.

Use artificial intelligence tools first, which can help you simplify marketing, improve the customer experience, or perform business-critical tasks faster.

For example, SparkToro will track social data to determine which podcasts, social data, etc. they are popular with your audience. The age of artificial intelligence has arrived and many brands have been using it to their advantage.

E-commerce brands can hire virtual assistants to handle many tasks. AI can help you solve these tasks, allowing you to put human resources in more creative roles.

9. Personalization will not just be a purchase, but a personal link

Customers prefer an experience tailored to their unique needs. Smarter HQ understands that 72% of customers only interact with personalized messages.

Although personalization was initially limited to email marketing, customer expectations and technical capabilities have changed as much as possible.

The use of personalization aims to build a lasting relationship with customers by recording information about customers (with their consent) and using it to remember things such as the time of their last purchase, the types of goods they frequently buy, etc., and then Provide suggestions for the next step.
For example, when Enfamil asks pregnant women to sign up for an email list, they will ask them to provide their due date. This allows them to provide relevant information throughout pregnancy and during baby development.

Brands must also use the information stored in the CRM database to create a personalized customer service experience, no matter where the customer chooses to interact, whether via email, phone or other channels.

10. Green consumerism will become more and more popular

Sustainability is no longer the patent of a few brands. In fact, changes in the economic, cultural and social patterns of many countries in the world have changed the focus on environmental protection product manufacturing.

Brands such as Amazon have made a commitment to sustainable development, and as humans seek ways to reduce waste and protect the planet for future generations, other e-commerce brands may follow suit.

Green consumers are also demonstrating their purchasing power. According to Harvard Business Review, 65% of shoppers want to shop from brands that target sustainability.

Analyze your current products to determine whether they are manufactured using sustainable processes or using sustainable materials. If not, consider making changes to adopt a more sustainable process.

Connect your brand with charities that give back to the environment. As with choosing influencers, as long as you are ethically consistent, your brand can benefit from working together.

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