When looking to the future, one must first consider the present and the past.
When considering the past and present however, it is clear that the last few years have fundamentally altered how we, as a society, live and conduct business in a post-COVID-19 world.
But it's also important to remember the effects that globalisation and digitalisation have had. From increased connectivity to disruptive technologies like streaming services and online marketplaces, it’s safe to say that globalisation and digitisation have had an astronomical effect on the world!
Online shopping and e-commerce wouldn't have been conceivable without digital technology and the escalation of worldwide connectivity throughout the years.
If you think about it without the internet and a device to connect to it there wouldn’t be a way for online shopping or e-commerce to even exist, let alone become one of the major trends of the twenty-first century.
Speaking of trends, a shift in consumer behaviour was one of the main trends in the e-commerce sector last year. This is due to the impact that the pandemic had on customers’ e-buying behaviour.
According to Meteorspace, 67% of respondents stated that their e-buying behaviour has unquestionably risen since the start of the pandemic.
Ultimately, due to the restrictions set in place during the pandemic, more and more people were, and still are, opting to buy online opposed to actually going into stores. Join us as we explore the e-commerce predictions and trends we have for 2023.
The Rise of Social Media
Did you know that according to Statista, in 2022, there were 4.59 billion people on social media worldwide, with that number expected to rise to 5.85 billion by 2027?
It is obvious that social media is still on the rise, but how does this relate to e-commerce?
The development of shopping features on platforms such as Instagram and TikTok will undoubtedly have a significant impact on the e-commerce industry, as an increasing number of social media users choose to buy directly from the Instagram store.
This is due to a variety of factors, including the fact that social media allows users to access global stores, is extremely quick and easy to use, and makes the shopping experience seamless...almost too good NOT to use.
Just when you thought the rise of social media shopping couldn't get any more enticing, influencer marketing emerged as a social media force to be reckoned with. As more and more brands are choosing to partner with influencers in order to leverage their reach and credibility when promoting their brand and products to their followers, the rise of social media shopping continues.
Micro and macro influencers are now promoting specific products and brands across social media, directly linking customers to their online stores! Followers discover new products and brands from the influencers they trust and follow and ultimately this leads to an increase in online sales as they can buy directly from the online social media stores.
However, there are privacy and data protection concerns as users easily provide their information to potentially unsafe or fake social media pages, which could have serious consequences.
The major issues pertaining to privacy and data protection are identity theft, spamming and phishing as scammers may use your personal information to send you spam messages, and financial loss, as scammers or fake shops may use your banking information to hack into your account.
The Impact of Personalisation
When it comes to e-commerce trends and forecasts, the impact of customisation is difficult to miss because algorithms are continually being implemented and modified to improve the user experience.
Both positive and bad effects have resulted from the ongoing optimization of marketing campaigns to ensure that consumers are accurately targeted, and it appears that throughout the web, people are growing weary of being messaged by algorithms rather than real people.
According to research by McKinsey & Company, 76% of consumers say that receiving personalised communications is a major factor in their purchasing decisions. As a result, an increasing number of businesses are hiring UI/UX designers to improve the flow of the online shopping experience for consumers and to ensure that their websites are optimised for conversions.
Consequently, we predict that in 2023, personalisation of shopping experiences will be a significant trend.
This may evolve as retailers use virtual and augmented reality to personalise the online shopping experience for buyers, or as businesses use artificial intelligence and machine learning to better understand customer preferences and behaviours in order to personalise the shopping experience in this regard.
Overall, personalisation is likely to remain a significant trend in e-commerce as retailers seek to differentiate themselves and provide superior shopping experiences to customers.
The Rise of Sustainability
Did you know that according to Oberlo, studies show that stores that value the environment grow 5.8 times faster and have a 20% increase in conversion rates?
As consumers become more aware of the environmental impact of their purchases, the rise of sustainability in e-commerce is a growing trend. This is increasing demand in the e-commerce industry for environmentally friendly products, packaging, and shipping practices.
Businesses are responding to this trend by implementing sustainable practices such as waste reduction, environmentally friendly materials, and carbon-neutral shipping options. This not only benefits the environment, but it can also boost a company's reputation and customer loyalty.
Furthermore, the rise of e-commerce and the associated increase in shipping and delivery has heightened concern about the environmental impact of these activities. As a result, many e-commerce companies are looking into ways to reduce their carbon footprint and promote sustainable practices across their supply chains.
Overall, the rise of sustainability in e-commerce reflects the growing importance of environmental factors in consumer decision-making, and it is expected to have a significant impact on the industry in the coming years.
The Impact of Automation
One of the most visible examples of how automation is influencing the e-commerce industry is the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning in e-commerce to streamline processes, improve efficiency, and enhance the customer experience.
With operations becoming more efficient and faster, with lower costs and higher customer satisfaction as a result of automated order fulfilment, shipping processes, and customer service inquiry management…to name a few.
It is clear that automation will continue to have a significant impact on the e-commerce industry.
The rise of omnichannel retail is our final prediction for the e-commerce industry.
Many businesses are choosing to integrate their various distribution channels in order to provide a consistent buying experience regardless of the channel a customer uses.
This type of retail enables businesses to provide a more personalised shopping experience to customers while also increasing flexibility and convenience.
We predict that omnichannel retail will have an impact on e-commerce by increasing sales, improving customer experience, increasing customer loyalty, and increasing operational efficiency for online stores.
Are you curious about the future of e-commerce and the latest trends and forecasts for 2023? Do you want to stay ahead of the game and prepare your business for the changes that are coming? Then join us as we explore the impact of social media on e-commerce, the rise of personalisation and sustainability, and the role of automation in the industry. Don't miss out on this opportunity to gain valuable insights into the future of e-commerce and stay ahead of the competition.