2022 was another record breaking year for e-commerce! According to data from Morgan Stanley, e-commerce sales now account for 22% of all global purchases. And in 2023, over 265 million U.S. consumers are estimated to be shopping online.
Shopify’s Michael Keenan recently reported, “Two years ago, only 17.8% of sales were made from online purchases. That number is expected to reach 20.8% in 2023, a 2-percentage point increase in e-commerce market share. Growth is expected to continue, reaching 23% by 2025, which translates to a 5.2 percentage point increase in just five years.”
Customer buying behaviors have evolved as online shopping has grown. As technology continues to develop and consumer preferences shift, e-commerce companies will need to adapt and innovate to stay ahead of the curve. To stay competitive and remain relevant in 2023 and beyond, brands need to move with the market and embrace emerging trends. Here are some of the top e-commerce trends to watch in 2023 and tips to help e-commerce brands leverage each.
Already a dominant force in e-commerce, social media platforms are becoming increasingly more important as e-commerce consumers use them for discovery, research, and even purchasing. Companies will need to incorporate social media into their e-commerce strategies to reach and engage with consumers.
According to The Future of Commerce, “Global sales via social media platforms were estimated at 992 billion U.S. dollars in 2022, and forecasts suggest that social commerce sales will reach around 2.9 trillion U.S. dollars by 2026. Social commerce is critical for brands to reach their target audiences and is expected to generate $30.73 billion in sales in 2023, accounting for 20% of global retail e-commerce sales.” The Future of Commerce also reports that Gen Z customers use TikTok more than Google to find product recommendations. For brands seeking to target these audiences, using TikTok is vital.
E-commerce business owners may also consider incorporating an influencer marketing strategy. Partnering with an influencer allows businesses to engage with pre-qualified customers, which can increase both engagement and conversion rates.
Expanding Omnichannel Capabilities
Being multichannel means businesses must be able to sell to and communicate with customers through multiple channels at any given moment. This may look like having a website, Facebook shop, and an Instagram account. Omnichannel is the next level up—and it’s the future of e-commerce. Currently, 52% of e-commerce sites have omnichannel capabilities.
Building omnichannel capabilities into an e-commerce site requires an intimate understanding of the consumer audiences. Creating a seamless experience is what often causes a customer to return. In fact, companies that have robust omnichannel strategies retain almost 89% of their customers. However, the reverse is also true. Companies with weak omnichannel strategies have a 33% customer retention rate.
Strong omnichannel strategies do more than enhance the experience of online shoppers. According to McKinsey, the more channels a sales company has, the more market shares a company gains.
Viral videos offer more than entertainment. Trend-based and time-sensitive by nature, they’re also a potentially valuable marketing tool if brands can strike while the iron is hot!
To make the most of viral videos, dedicate time and resources to watching social trends and seeing where they could dovetail with your brand’s message. If/when you see a potential overlap, it’s imperative you take immediate action.
While cryptocurrency continues to struggle with market volatility, the concept itself is here to stay. According to Deloitte’s “Merchant Adoption of Digital Currency Payments Survey,” nearly 75% of retailers say they plan to accept cryptocurrency or stablecoin payments within the next two years.
E-commerce brands and businesses should start preparing now to allow for crypto payments, in addition to credit card payment options, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and the like. We suggest working with providers capable of implementing crypto payment options for checkouts so your brand is ready when this market goes mainstream.
More and more consumers are considering sustainability to be an important purchasing factor. In fact, according to Business Wire, 85% of global consumers have taken sustainability into account when shopping in the last five years. This preference creates a huge opportunity for brands, especially if they can create sustainable products and packaging and publicize their strategies in an effective manner.
Your brand’s first step is finding sustainable alternatives, such as changing packaging to recycled and recyclable materials. While this may come with an increased cost, it also sets the stage for sales success. Once sustainability changes have been implemented, brands should actively promote their sustainable initiatives on social media sites, company blogs, and in any marketing or sales efforts.
According to data from Google, 60% of shoppers say that online videos have given them “ideas or inspiration for their purchase.” So seize the opportunity and convert this interest into action! Shoppable videos, which are essentially video content that includes links to product pages or even “add to cart” options, are a great way to guide prospective customers from product interest to active purchasing.
Shoppable videos help ensure that no matter how or when prospective customers interact with your brand, they can easily make a purchase. Consider building a few trial ads to discover what works and what doesn’t, then build out your shoppable video strategy based on those results.
Paying attention to these growing trends can help business’s bottom line, which is increasingly important in today’s competitive market. Staying aware of upcoming changes can also ensure you’re not left behind.