We are 99.9% sure that you don’t need anyone to tell you that eCommerce is something that’s constantly changing and evolving, as let’s be honest, it’s pretty darn obvious. With new opportunities, challenges and technologies emerging every day, merchants are having to constantly think ahead of the game in order to stay on top.
However, those merchants who are savvy, are able to capitalize on new opportunities and also innovate around challenges are the ones who will more than likely be ones that come out on top and become the clear winners compared to those who stick to the same old trends from previous years. These types may even start to see their customers flock elsewhere. Therefore, it is crucial to keep up with the new crazes that are happening around you if you wish to stay ahead of your competition.
So with all that in mind, here are the trends we think you should be focussing on this coming year in order to get the most out of your eCommerce store.
Brick and Mortar
There is often a common misconception that eCommerce stores are pushing physical stores off the grid. However, that really isn’t the case. Brick-and-mortar stores are far from dying out, trends have demonstrated that “online-only” is a very complex business model, and those merchants who sell products only over a wifi connection are unable to compete with merchants who run both online and physical stores.
There is often a common misconception that eCommerce stores are pushing physical stores off the grid. However, that really isn’t the case. Brick-and-mortar stores are far from dying outTweet this now
One trend that is coming very popular in physical stores is Click and Collect. This service allows consumers to order online and then pick it up at a Brick-and-Mortar location on the day and time of their own convenience. Using this option for shopping not only reduces shopping costs but also will drive customers to a physical store.
A physical retail store gives the customer a chance to interact with the product, as some customers may be worried about buying online without seeing or trying the product out first. Even the biggest online giants such as Alibaba and Amazon now have physical retail stores.
We have already written a whole blog post on voice search and how it will change eCommerce, as the way consumers are searching for online products online is changing dramatically. Consumers, more than ever are relying on voice search on their smartphones or voice assistance such as Amazon’s Echo and Google Home units to search for products online. Experts are of the opinion that voice search is the future of web browsing. If their prediction is anything to go by, eCommerce merchants should be optimizing their sites for voice search in order to reach the technology savvy customers.
Optimising your voice searches and textually searches are a little different. If you are just starting with the online sales industry, create a stunning, fully featured store, use a really good eCommerce website builder then find the expertise needed to help you with voice search optimisation.
Yes, we are aware that email isn’t by any means a new eCommerce marketing tool. Despite this and many of the doomsday predictions of its demise (just like the whole ecard situation), it’s actually stronger than ever before. It shines in areas such as cost, success, measurability and flexibility.
Whilst email is a good eCommerce marketing tool, it is very crucial that you keep in mind that if your emails are not created correctly, it might not work for you, emails must appear interesting, interactive, valuable, relevant and timely.
In this day and age influencer marketers are pretty much everywhere. Using an influencer marketer can help you increase brand awareness, sales leads and overall traffic to your site. As an eCommerce merchant, find an influencer of high-quality that is in your niche and sponsor them to help endorse your brand on their own social media platform.
A high-quality influencer is one who has a substantial number of followers but doesn’t go too big on your first try to reach out to influencers so maybe wait until you have done a few before targeting those Kardashians.
Video Marketing is an incredible way to connect your audience with the human side of your brand. It can convey information a lot clearer, increase user engagement, increase your brand’s awareness and boost those conversions rates.
You should be adding the means of video onto your website as well as your social media channels. However, to make the most out of video marketing, ensure that the videos are in line with your brand’s strategy. This means maintaining the same fonts, logo and colours as they are in the rest of your site and social media presence. Additionally, you need to upload your videos natively instead of just linking them from YouTube. (other hosting platforms are available.)
Today, chatbots have become an essential part of customer service as they have the overall ability to handle basic customer service enquiries and can also be left to function 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For this reason alone, companies are incorporating chatbots into their marketing strategies to give shoppers a more personalised shopping experience as well as reducing customer service costs.
Mobile Optimisation has been on the top of eCommerce trends for quite some time now. This year, however, it’s more than just making mobile sites more user-friendly and responsive.
With more users that are shopping via their smartphones and tablets, you ought to create a designated shopping app for your brand. You also need to incorporate new ways that enable customers to search for products via your app.
If you have not yet integrated a mobile checkout into your eCommerce website, now is the time to do so. Customers are demanding for more streamlined payment options such as Google Wallet, Paypal, Amazon Pay and Apple Pay.
Social Media platforms might be all about the selfies and celebrity gossip for most of the general public, but for the eCommerce merchants, they’re tools which can help them increase their brand’s awareness, improve their online presence and will deliver high-quality customer service.
To use social media, determine which platforms will give you the exposure you are after. Once you have done this, post relevant content then connect with your audience, so they feel more comfortable buying your product.
So, these we have it, 8 trends which are definitely worth focusing on for the year ahead, applying any of these to your eCommerce store could be the different help make 2018 the best year yet for your business.