Get to know the 10 hottest eCommerce trends that will dictate the industry in 2023.
Exercise. Eat healthier. Lose weight. Save money. Spend more time with family, friends, and loved ones. According to this New Year’s survey by Statista, these were the top 5 most popular resolutions for 2023. But while the desire to improve one’s self for the positive is very admirable, 80% of New Year’s resolutioners lose that desire by the second week of February. Then, it’s back to 10 and a half months of the same old routines and habits they swore to break. But, hey. There’s always next year.
There’s no flip-flopping in the eCommerce industry, however. eCommerce grows and evolves to meet the growing and evolving demands of the consumer public. Each evolutionary milestone in eCommerce begins as a trend but unlike trends in fashion and in pop culture that arrive overnight and vanish just as quickly, eCommerce trends become permanent staples and breed newer succeeding trends. 2021 saw emphasis being placed on dynamic content, minimalistic design, and accessibility. 2022 built upon those trends with headless commerce, deeper integrations with social media, and consumer activism. 2023 will bring about even more changes to the eCommerce landscape, so here’s our list of the top 10 eCommerce trends to watch (and would be wise to follow) in the new year.
eCommerce Trends for 2023 (and beyond):
- Online Shopping as a Necessity
- The Rise of Mobile Commerce
- Millennials and Gen-Z are the Key Demographics
- Sustainability and Greater Green Consumer Activism
- Social Media, Influencer Marketing, and Social Commerce
- More Personalization
- 24/7 Customer Service
- Expanding Payment Options
#1: Online Shopping as a Necessity
eMarketer predicts that global eCommerce sales will increase 12.2% year-over-year to $6.3 trillion in 2023. Additionally, online sales are expected to hit $8.1 trillion by 2026–a near-56% increase over the eCommerce sales totals of 2021. The eCommerce industry experienced a significant boom in 2014 but the COVID pandemic further accelerated its growth, so much so that where previously, those who were uncomfortable with shopping online had now grown to depend on it. It wasn’t just with consumers, either; businesses themselves had to turn to the Internet or else face imminent closure as in-store shopping was, for the most part, restricted only to bare essentials such as groceries. The prevalence of online shopping varies by region but overall, people are getting comfortable with making their purchases virtually and as more and more stores go online, more shoppers are following them.
#2: The Rise of Mobile Commerce
In this report by Oberlo, 60.28% of all web traffic came from mobile devices in November 2022. Compare this rate to that of 2012, where only a paltry 10.88% of all web traffic was credited to mobile devices. Of course, the reason for this is the rapid evolution of mobile technology and the increasing accessibility of Internet connectivity. Today’s smartphones and tablets are far more advanced than they were a decade ago; even those made from the top manufacturers 5 years ago seem ancient versus today’s available examples. In 2021, mobile devices accounted for $359.32 billion of all eCommerce sales. By 2025, this figure is slated to hit $728.8 billion and almost half of all eCommerce retail in the US alone. Needless to say, if your website isn’t optimized for mobile use by now, you’d best get a move on it.
#3: Millennials and Gen-Z are the Key Demographics
Millennials (born between 1977 and 1994) and Gen-Z (born between 1995 and 2010) are often the butt of jokes by senior citizen baby boomers (1946 – 1964) and aging Gen-X’ers (1965 – 1976), but they together make up the key target consumer demographic in today’s economy. Because while the boomers are dying off and the Gen-X’ers are entering retirement age, Millennials and Gen-Z have a combined $2.86 trillion in spending power and their shopping habits are far less restrained than that of the older generations. Many factors play into this, such as employment, living expenses, and lifestyle but young people are the driving force of today’s commerce. Perhaps, you may have noticed the largest online brands and retailers specifically targeting a younger clientele in recent times–and for good reason. 66.6% of young shoppers aged between 25 and 40 do the majority of their shopping through eCommerce and the types of products purchased online are spread throughout a multitude of categories. It’s easy to see why so many businesses are making special efforts to accommodate these new potential customers.
#4: Sustainability and Greater Green Consumer Activism
Adding to the previous point, the younger generations are also more in-tune to current socio-political and environmental concerns than their older, often intentionally-clueless counterparts. PWC reports that as many as 30% of consumers cite environmental impact as a determining factor as to whether they will purchase from or refuse to do business with a specific company. Not even Amazon was immune to the increasing public unease over the state of the environment; the unease driven mainly by consumers in the Millennial and Gen-Z age ranges. In response, Amazon and other major corporations began to clean up their acts (though the degree of which greatly varies from company to company) in an attempt to make amends with the disapproving public. Maybe not so much out of genuine concern for the environment, but more towards not willing to lose so much business over an issue they had previously and capriciously avoided addressing. The promotion of green business practices in eCommerce will continue to flourish if a public stand is taken to actively promote green business practices. With the combined strength of consumers and businesses, it is possible for the world to behave in a more environmentally-friendly manner without causing any unnecessary harm to the planet in the process.
#5: Social Media, Influencer Marketing, and Social Commerce
There has been a drastic change in the way that people live their daily lives due to social media, and this includes the way that they purchase products, over the last few years. eCommerce businesses can benefit from social media influencers in addition to being able to get found by their target audiences by connecting with them on the different types of social media platforms available to them. This is a concept called Social Commerce. Social Commerce involves selling products directly through social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter. TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Youtube Shorts are some of the most popular social media platforms that use paid advertisements, influencer marketing, and short videos to determine whether someone will buy something. To those who still think of social media as a forum for people to share photos of what they had to eat for dinner the night before, it might sound ludicrous to invest so much effort into integrating eCommerce business with social media, but know that $727.63 billion came from Social Commerce last year. That number is expected to spike even higher in 2023 and in the following years to come.
#6: More Personalization
eCommerce personalization refers to the process of displaying dynamic content on an online store based on the information it has collected about the customers and how they use it. eCommerce personalization can be affected by a variety of factors, such as the demographics of the user, their browsing history, past purchases, as well as the device(s) they use to browse. According to a study by McKinsey & Company, the effectiveness of personalization programs has been demonstrated to increase conversion rates by 10 to 15% and customer satisfaction rates by 20%. Customer satisfaction is particularly important as businesses that increase retention by a mere 5% increase profits by 25 to 95%, as stated by Harvard Business Review. Additionally, customers who receive personalized shopping experiences are more likely to return to a company, according to Epsilon. Retailers can also benefit from that type of sustainable growth, since attracting new customers costs between 5 and 25% more than retaining active customers.
#7: 24/7 Customer Service
The best way for any business to ensure customer satisfaction is through providing world class customer service. Shoppers want to purchase products from companies that seem to care about them, and they will return if they are satisfied with the experience. Today’s consumers have a higher expectation of customer service than in the past and they expect 24/7 access to customer service, just as they have access to shopping online 24/7. Now, while it can be rather unrealistic for a business to employ live human customer service agents around the clock, all throughout the year, they’ll still need to accommodate 24/7 customer service availability the best they can. This is where having automated chatbots can be of major assistance. A chatbot is a virtual customer service agent that can answer questions and resolve problems instead of a real person. In the past, chatbot interactions were blatantly synthetic; you were interacting with algorithms and codes instead of a living person. The earliest chatbots could only handle the simplest functions and were incapable of handling complex ones but AI technology has improved chatbots so that they appear more humanlike, which greatly enhances the user experience.
Younger people may have more buying power and are more likely to spend online. However, with today’s economy and no resolve for inflation in sight, they’re also taking more time out to research their desired products and hunt for the best prices, deals, and bargains online. Mobile usage also plays a major part in this trend; as more web traffic is coming in from mobile devices–and gradually supplanting desktop computers as the preferred avenue for Internet browsing–this means that consumers are researching and cross-shopping just as frequently as they are buying. As a retailer, you will most likely need to readjust your customer policies, pricing, and promotional scheduling to compensate for inflation being a hindrance against impulsive shopping habits. At the same time, if your policies and pricing is too restrictive, the shoppers who are doing their research will have cross-shopped you against one of your competitors who are far more lenient with their rules and more inviting to customers.
#9: Expanding Payment Options
This year, payment options themselves will play a crucial role in determining consumer behavior in 2023, building on last year’s trend towards faster and better payment processing. There could be a loss of sales if there are too few payment options available to the customer. Mobile users are more likely to convert to a purchase if they have a variety of payment options available to them. Due to the expectation of heavily-increasing mobile purchasing in the coming years, eCommerce websites should take the time to review their payment options if they wish to remain competitive. The option of offering more payment options also enables them to take advantage of a variety of new trends, which helps to deliver a more personalized service to their customers, thereby making their shopping experience more enjoyable.
Throughout the past two years, a significant increase in cybercrime activity has been observed, with the main causes being crypto mining, the 2020 US presidential election, COVID, and more recently, the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February of last year. Now more than ever, Internet safety and data protection is paramount as cybercriminals have become increasingly sophisticated and savvy as it pertains to stealing important valuable data VIA the Internet. It’s completely understandable for eCommerce businesses to want to deliver the absolute best personalized shopping experience to their customers. However, the importance of providing a customized client experience should never be at the expense of requiring too much personal information. Also, online shoppers–regardless of experience–are growing wise to how easy it is for data to leak online; this alone often prevents them from shopping with businesses that do not go out of their way to outwardly advertise data security. Businesses need to ensure that their security certificates are in order, that they’re not retaining customer credit card info, and that all monetary transactions are thoroughly encrypted.
Throughout the years of industry-changing trends that eCommerce has endured, there have been 2 main constant themes: progress and evolution. As customer habits change, as the world itself changes, eCommerce has adapted accordingly. Businesses that wish to remain ahead of the curve and remain on top of their competition will need to acknowledge each up-and-coming trend and decide whether or not to adhere. But with all of the other responsibilities an online business owner has, it can be a daunting task to not only oversee your own operations but to also monitor the entire online retail landscape as well. This is where we at Diztinct can help. At Diztinct, we are dedicated eCommerce industry experts in custom web design, development, and marketing. Every aspect of our services–from graphic design and logo illustration, to platform development and web design, to marketing and advertising–is custom-tailored to suit your business needs and the needs of your customers.
If you want your business to have a Diztinct advantage over the competition, get in touch and let us know how we can help.