7 Ecommerce Trends Affecting Entrepreneur Decisions.
If you are an aspiring entrepreneur who wishes to succeed in ecommerce, the odds are that you are keeping up with the latest industry trends.
Knowing what happens in ecommerce is an asset that should not be underestimated. Why? Because failing to keep up with the trends leaves you behind entrepreneurs who do, and catching up might be out of your hands.
The ecommerce industry is massive, so it is easy to miss certain trends. Or maybe you have not bothered checking what is happening in the first place? Regardless, this article should give you a better understanding of what the current ecommerce trends are and why you should pay attention to them.
1. Mobile Optimization
The convenience of shopping on your smartphone or tablet is understandable, and it justifies ecommerce store owners investing heavily in mobile applications and mobile-friendly sites.
If you were to look at current Shopify ecommerce stores to inspire entrepreneurs who might be looking to change things for themselves, one common factor is a site that runs smoothly on mobile devices and is easy to navigate.
Whether you need to hire an Android and iOS app developer yet depends on how far you are and how much money you can spare, but for now, make sure that your website is functioning properly for mobile users. Otherwise, you stand to lose quite a few potential customers.
2. Augmented Reality
Online shopping has been gaining momentum for a while, and its popularity soared even more during the pandemic when even those who did not bother before had to change their stance.
Having said that, some people still feel uncertain about buying goods on the internet because they cannot try the goods in person. Risks involved in not getting what you expected are a significant ecommerce challenge businesses are trying to overcome.
Augmented reality could be a good solution, and it is no surprise to see the likes of Amazon investing in AR technology to provide shoppers with the option to browse goods in person.
Sure, replacing in-person browsing with virtual reality is not ideal, but it still offers a solid solution to consumers. And given how AR is becoming more accessible, the expectations are that we should see more of it in ecommerce as well as other industries. Thus, you want to start thinking about it and consider the possibilities of investing right now or later.
3. Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence comes in handy when you want to automate certain processes and save money in the ecommerce business.
A good example of this is data analysis. Whether it is your own data or competitor data, manually processing a vast amount of information is not efficient. It makes sense to leave the task to AI.
Chatbots are another instance of artificial intelligence excelling and providing entrepreneurs with a great alternative. You can replace real people in customer support and have chatbots do the work.
Finally, there are AI tools that generate content. Sure, a text written by a computer is different from a text written by a human, but AI-generated content continues to improve, and it is getting harder to distinguish whether a text was written by a real person or AI.
4. Advanced Customization
Shoppers want a sense that they are in control when shopping. The lack of customization and personalization can dampen a store’s credibility, particularly in certain niches.
For instance, a custom merchandise store should not limit available fonts, design, material, and product options if it can help it. The freedom to choose is an asset and will be greatly appreciated by shoppers. And if such a feature is missing, the odds are that the shoppers will look elsewhere.
5. Freebies and Incentives
Most ecommerce entrepreneurs should be aware of the trick of offering free shipping rather than a shipping fee. A consumer’s mind works in a way that it sees a shipping fee as an additional expense, which leads to fewer conversions. In other words, a product that costs 15 dollars and has no shipping fee will look more attractive than a product that costs 10 dollars but has a 5-dollar shipping fee attached to it.
Free shipping is just one example of a freebie or incentive that lets you attract more customers. You need to be on the lookout for new ways to persuade shoppers that they should use your brand.
Customer retention is just as important as attracting new leads, particularly when talking about the longevity of a business.
It is a common practice to reward loyal customers with various gifts, such as discount coupons. Of course, a business needs to weigh the pros and cons and how much it can afford to spend on such freebies. Ultimately, it is about the profits, and you do not want to spend more on freebies than you can actually afford.
6. Flexible Payment Gateways
Put yourself in the shoes of a shopper who put a product in the cart and is going to the checkout. If the checkout process is too long and complicated, it is likely that the shopping cart will be abandoned.
And even if a shopper reaches the final phase—payment—it still does not guarantee a conversion. Why? Because the shopper might not find their preferred payment method.
It is common to offer PayPal, Payoneer, and credit cards as payment options on an online store. However, these are not necessarily enough. To improve conversion rates, it is recommended to offer as many different payment gateways as possible, including cryptocurrency, so long as the option is implementable.
7. Voice Search
The last trend to mention is the growing popularity of voice search. With the rise of digital AI assistants like Alexa, more and more people are finding the convenience of carrying out everyday tasks with the help of these assistants.
The idea of voice shopping is still relatively new, but there is no denying that this particular method will rise in popularity, so it is recommended to research the idea and try to optimize your store for voice shopping as early as possible.