The phenomenal ecommerce growth over the last decade has continued defying all expectations. This trend has revolutionized modern business while affecting consumer behavior greatly at the same time.
Recent studies indicate that more than 51% of Americans now prefer shopping online. This fact contributed to the impressive year-over-year ecommerce growth of 23%.
Little wonder then that Jeff Bezos the CEO of Amazon recently replaced Bill Gates as the richest man in the world. Simply put, ecommerce is the present and future of business. As an entrepreneur, you need to leverage its growing influence to advance your business.
It is imperative to learn new trends in ecommerce to reposition your business appropriately. The fact that consumer habits shift constantly, is one feature of the ecommerce landscape that should concern you. You need to take steps to stay ahead of curve, to continue growing in this highly volatile landscape.
With ecommerce revenues in 2018 expected to grow $460 plus billion, you have every reason to prepare your business. These are some ecommerce trends that you should look out for:
The Voice Search Revolution
Voice search has been around for some time now and most major IT giants have invested heavily in voice assistants. From Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa to the Google Assistant, voice assistants are all the rage. This highlights the impact the trend will have on ecommerce.
Research shows, that over 40% of millennials have already used voice search before making a purchase and that the number will keep growing in the future.
As a local business owner, you should make use of voice search by creating content that answers to the most probable queries.
You need to optimize Google My Business listings by including all relevant details including the name, address, phone numbers (NAP), and any other relevant information on your web pages. Call your team together and research about questions your customers are most likely to ask, then create content optimized for voice search.
The Big Data Transformation
Big data has now become a buzzword in the internet world. However, analysts say the impact of big data and analytics is just beginning. Any action a customer performs when interacting with your business offers a potential for data collection. This information optimizes business decision making.
Data is at the core of ecommerce by helping businesses learn more about their target customer. Big data analytics is going to grow tremendously in 2018, and your business should prepare itself for the transformation.
Research carried out by Google recently found that most online shoppers start a purchase on one device and complete it on another. For instance, a consumer will research about a travel package while commuting to work and complete the purchase on their office computer. This trend is getting bigger in 2018. As an online marketer, you have your work cut out for you.
This calls for the creation of a seamless visual and UI experience from one platform to the other. Working with a Magento development company helps you build a responsive ecommerce platform that gives your target customers a fulfilling experience. The clarion call in this regard is to go Omni-device and Omni-platform; this entails increasing your presence on multiple channels. With such an approach to marketing, you ensure that target customer will always find you, thus increases the chances of conversion.
More Intelligent AI
The revolutionary impact of AI has greatly influenced many industries and has taken the ecommerce world by storm. 2018 is already witnessing a significant growth in smarter, rapid and more reliable AI powered by blockchain technology.
With the global chatbot market enjoying 24.3% of CAGR, it is obvious that this technology will revolutionize customer service.
The emerging of AI-powered chatbots is revolutionizing shopping experiences. As an online business owner, you need to put your money into this concept. The automation of customer service is one of the best outcomes of investing in AI. It is time you jumped on the bandwagon.
The Micro-moments Marketing Takeover
Today, online shoppers are always on their devices and your business must always be there when they finally make a decision to purchase. Think about the time when Google devised the concept of micro-moment marketing, and realize that today it is an ecommerce trend that you have to follow in 2018.
With over 90% of people using smartphones to search for answers, your business must take advantage by providing these answers.
If customers want a how-to video on something related to your business, make sure you have it ready. The always-on access to smartphones and the growing need for instant gratification are the backbone of micro-moments and your role as a business owner is to ensure that your target customers have everything they need instantly.
Importance of User Generated Content
User-generated content has not received the hype it deserves yet it is one of the most effective techniques to build online relationships.
User-generated content is 20% more effective than other forms of media.
This is reason enough to deploy it in your ecommerce business. In 2018, user-generated content is set to receive the prominence it deserves. As a business owner, you should encourage your customers to create their own genuine content that you can then use on social media and other platforms. This is a great technique for retaining customers and for targeting new ones as well.
Personalized Shopping Experiences
Even with all the technological tools available, most e-retailers fail miserably when it comes to offering a personalized shopping experience. In 2018, things are bound to change, and business will have to give their customers a personalized shopping experience. Google and Amazon, the most active companies in the world of ecommerce, are already doing this. Google is targeting content based on previous search history while Amazon provides recommendations based on previous purchases and searches.
You need to collect customer information proactively in order to position information that is helpful to them in the correct places. Your marketing efforts work more effectively when you target customers based on research data. For instance, tailored promotional emails are more likely to achieve the desired effect than mass emails. A customized loyalty program is another great way to create a personalized shopping experience.
More Subscription-Based Services
The last few years have seen the emergence of subscription services such as NetFlix, Hulu, and The Dollar Shave Club to mention a few.
These services have disrupted their industries and this trend is going to continue into 2018. More brands are investing in subscription-based service models and as an ecommerce business, it is time you joined the club. The subscription segment of ecommerce is only getting started and more online retailers will leverage the benefits to grow their businesses using this method.
Video The Content King
Visual content has reigned in internet marketing and all projections point to the rapid growth of the use of visual content in ecommerce. Brands are getting smarter when it comes to marketing ROI and with the unrivaled success of video; there is every reason to watch this trend closely.
As an online marketer, you should leverage the popularity of video across all consumer segments. Its ease of production, distribution and quick sharing quality make videos a versatile marketing tool that aptly fits into the high-octane world of ecommerce.
There are many other ecommerce trends or which you need to keep a lookout. supply chain automation, influencer marketing, augmented reality, machine learning, the amazing Amazon revolution and image editing are just a few other top trends that will influence ecommerce in 2018.
Collaborating with a Magento development company to develop and maintain your ecommerce platform is the first step you need to take towards leveraging these trends. You can gain experience from ecommerce experts who had the prerequisite foresight to optimize their ecommerce websites so that they could take advantage of every emerging trend.