Did you make any predictions at the start of the year as to what was going to be featuring in the eCommerce world and what was likely to be sliding out of the popularity stakes? If so, how did you do so far? We’re halfway through 2017, and it’s time to reflect on what we’ve found out.
First, let’s look at the success stories.
The first one is no surprise – this is the year of the mobile device. Most people are shopping on their phones and tablets now, so whether you’re a major high street store or just setting out on your Magento eCommerce journey in the local area, having a responsive site that can handle smartphones and tablets is essential.
Well designed, slick and intuitive apps are in order. No-one wants to hang around or wait until they get home to shop on the desktop, at least not this year.
And then there’s omnichannel integration. You know the kind of thing. If someone starts shopping via your Magento desktop site, and then have to switch to shopping via an app, they want to continue, not start again. The experience should be seamless. Don’t act like they’re a stranger if they’ve already been engaging with your site for a while elsewhere.
The use of social media for shopping is an upward trend. Whether it’s to find out more about products or to encounter them for the first time, social media is the place that people can check out their friend’s recommendations and reactions, as well as those of the general public. So get your social media up to scratch.
And how about what’s not going to excite people after all this year?
If you believe everything you read in the newspapers, we’re all going to expect delivery within the next hour, drones will be filling the skies with our weekly shopping bags, and when you go into a physical store you’ll be able to go through all the motions via screens and robots, so you feel right at home with the online shopping experience. Well, in real life terms, it’s not looking like that.
Perhaps the summary is that strong and steady progress is being made in eCommerce technologies, just as you’d expect. But we haven’t gone space age. Not yet.