The new year bring new opportunities that ecommerce retailers just cannot ignore. With studies showing that the ecommerce sector will boom, there is no reason for e-retailers to shy away from reaping the benefits of the double-digit growth that this sector will experience until 2020.
Rather than going with the flow, both big and small ecommerce companies should look at the disruptive trends that are bringing about a change in the sector. If they can incorporate these trends into different spheres of their business, there is no doubt that they will be able to capture a large chunk of this $4 trillion industry.
1. It’s all about fast deliveries
Amazon is the undisputed leader in ecommerce, and it has set benchmarks in shipping and delivery for other e-retailers. Fast deliveries and improved logistics are about ensuring optimal customer experience, something that Amazon seems to have understood and mastered.
Trends show that in 2018, ecommerce stores will be upping their logistics game to ensure they get the goods out to their customers quicker, thereby creating customer delight. This is going to be possible due to emerging logistics technologies that are going to become integral to ecommerce.
2. Significant growth of mobile checkout
With people now looking for products on the go, it goes without saying that mobile checkouts will become the norm. Today, ecommerce players have access to quality and secure mobile payment systems that they can integrate onto their mobile platform, facilitating mobile payments with ease.
However, while smartphones are being used ubiquitously to browse through ecommerce stores, checkouts through mobiles are still lagging behind desktops. A study by the University of East Anglia, England, states that for the second quarter in 2016, mobile transactions were merely 46% of all ecommerce transactions. This is primarily because of the fear that consumers have about shopping through mobile. Hence, ecommerce retailers will have to work hard in 2018 to win confidence of their customer base.
3. Voice search is creating a noise
Smart home appliances like Google’s Home units and Echo from Amazon are the driving force behind voice search. It is predicted that in 2018, innovation in ecommerce will be spurred by voice search.
Walker Sands Digital reports that nearly 24% consumers have a voice-controlled smart appliance, and 19% consumers are using their appliances to make purchases. Another 33% have expressed a desire to begin purchases through voice-controlled devices in 2018. So, this opens up a plethora of opportunities for ecommerce stores, where they can sell and upsell with high success rates.
4. Be prepared for the rise of the machines with AI and machine learning
Artificial intelligence and machine learning are the latest offerings by Silicon Valley. These two technologies are disrupting ecommerce, and players will focus in 2018 on integrating AI and machine learning into their ecommerce stores.
Already machine learning is part of many ecommerce platforms and offers product recommendations and also improve search functionality. In 2018, machine learning and artificial intelligence will be integrated more deeply into ecommerce, thereby allowing retailers to offer customers the exact product they want without wasting time or effort.
5. Storefront apps will increase
There is no way you can separate online shopping from mobile usage. Hence, be prepared in 2018 to witness more retailers offering storefront apps to their customers. It will be the smaller retailers who will use these apps to increase sales and boost customer loyalty. After all, most major ecommerce stores are already offering these apps for several years.
Storefront apps have high conversion rates compared to responsive ecommerce sites. At least that is what Poq, an ecommerce app platform, reports. According to statistics from Poq, conversion rate is 40% higher for dedicated storefront apps compared to mobile websites. That should be tempting enough for retailers to come up with their own app!