Many companies that have yet to adapt to online sales have faced difficulties in recent years due to the fast digitization of e-commerce and the rise of online shopping. Whether you are a purely online or a multi-channel e-commerce business, the future is moving towards digitalization, personalization, and automation. In order to stay ahead of the competition, this blog will outline six of the biggest trends for 2023, allowing you to assess and improve your strategy.
Omnichannel is a retail strategy that seeks to provide a seamless and integrated shopping experience for customers across multiple channels. The strategy includes in-store, online, mobile, and social media. Omnichannel mainly aims to create a unified customer experience regardless of the channel a customer uses to interact with a business.
One example of a famous brand that is doing omnichannel well is Apple. Apple’s retail stores, website, and mobile app offer a consistent brand experience, with the same products and services available across each channel. Customers can purchase products online and pick them up in-store, start a purchase in-store and complete it online, and access customer service through any channel they choose.
For e-commerce businesses, the benefits of adopting an omnichannel strategy include increased customer engagement, improved customer experience, and higher sales. An omnichannel approach can also help businesses collect valuable customer data, which can be used to personalize the customer experience. Additionally, omnichannel can help businesses to manage inventory and shipping better, reducing costs and improving customer satisfaction.
Live shopping involves retailers presenting their products through a live broadcast, commonly on social media. This method allows customers to interact with the retailer, ask questions, receive immediate answers, and make purchases during the live stream. Interactivity is an important component of live shopping.
Brands have an opportunity to be innovative in their product presentation, connect with customers, and drive sales. This approach offers several key benefits for e-commerce businesses, including enhanced engagement, heightened brand recognition, and an increased likelihood of impulse purchases.
There is a 76% rise in live stream buying globally from pre-pandemic times up until today. Among the regions surveyed in the study, Europe showed the most significant increase during this period, with a growth of 86% in live stream shoppers, followed by the Middle East with 76% and North America with 68%.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is having a significant impact on e-commerce, offering companies multiple advantages. AI can help companies personalize customer experiences, improve product recommendations, and optimize pricing strategies. It can also assist in automating repetitive tasks, such as customer service and order fulfilment, freeing time for employees to focus on more critical tasks.
According to a study by Accenture, AI has the potential to increase productivity by 40% and improve profit margins by 38%. In the e-commerce industry specifically, AI can lead to a 20-30% increase in sales and a 30-50% reduction in operating costs. These improvements demonstrate the significant potential of AI to enhance e-commerce businesses’ efficiency and profitability.
The focus on protecting privacy is growing globally. The use of third-party tracking cookies, which have been a crucial part of online advertising, will become increasingly challenging as governments worldwide regulate the collection and sharing of personal data.
With Google’s additional delay in eliminating third-party cookies until 2024, preparing for this significant shift in how customer data is collected and shared is essential. In the e-commerce industry, customer data is precious. Hence, gathering and utilizing first-party data should be a top priority in your strategy.
Thankfully, the technological landscape has advanced and offers various tools for businesses to gather first-party data effectively. One of the most innovative tools is the Customer Data Platform (CDP), which not only collects data but also unifies it on one platform, providing a comprehensive understanding of each customer’s behavior and needs. This allows businesses to offer a highly personalized experience tailored to their customer’s requirements.
Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are trends that e-commerce companies can use to enhance the online shopping experience and make it more fun and interactive for customers. These technologies allow customers to preview and interact with products in a virtual environment, giving them a more immersive shopping experience.
The VR and AR technologies market is expected to reach around 31.1 billion by 2023 globally. Such technologies will be standard for personal use but also as a method to enhance the purchase experience.
Here are four examples of e-commerce companies that use AR or VR:
Last but not least, sustainability is still of high importance. One study shows that 68% of people are willing to change their purchasing habits or reduce their consumption in order to become more eco-friendly. The shift in customer behavior suggests that e-commerce companies must adopt more environmentally friendly strategies, as 2023 is another year of limiting harmful activities toward the environment.
The following examples are a few of the green practices an e-commerce business can implement:
The e-commerce industry is rapidly evolving and adapting to new trends in 2023. Companies must stay ahead of the competition by embracing trends such as omnichannel, live shopping, artificial intelligence, first-party data, virtual and augmented reality, and sustainability. To stay competitive in this rapidly changing industry, businesses must be prepared to embrace these trends and evolve with the times.
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