E-commerce growth in numbers, stats and revenue: Americans actually prefer online shopping, to traditional retail (51%) and the market is said to grow up to 523$ billion in 2020. There are many unique e-commerce challenges and trends that online retailers will face this year, provoked by the speed and length at which the industry has innovated processes.

Creating unique and personal interactions, that will accompany customers throughout the buyers journey, will have an additional level. Technology, web tracking and multi-platform engagement allow us to chase after the money – how it will be used in e-commerce?

Real-time engagement with Artificial Intelligence

Is there a special price for holiday season, what kind of ingredients are in the product or will this toy be suitable for a 4-year old. That are the everyday questions placed on the web. One of the biggest e-commerce challenges this year will be how to respond to these demands in a way that is personalised for your clients.

More and more AI devices are developed to take the challenge of real-time responses, starting with Messenger Bot launched last year, and this trend is going to stay with us for 2017. When thinking of automatic responses, first thing that comes to mind is a pop-up bot on a web page or an automated chat.

This year with language & machine learning the bots are going to be not only better, but engaging as well. Soon enough bots will gain the ability to automate nearly every request and master the language, immediately saving crucial data.

Processing, engaging & leading via AI & Personalisation

Machine learning will bring us to Big Data research & analysis. Informations can be gathered from the beginning of Customer’s Journey up to bounding them as long-standing customers.

This means that retailers will not only gain knowledge on the most searched items, or will track the potential customers that visited their websites, but, with great data analysis tools like Kissmetrics, Woopra or AgilOne, will be able to predict customers behaviour.

A personalised offer and a fitted product make great sales and relations – with 2017 we can welcome an era of 99% matched recommendations and 99% suggestions. Annoying, unfitting ads are worthless – they don’t bring money and oppress the users. That’s why e-commerce market is focused heavily on big data collection and personal experience. Cash is overrated!

Who needs a real wallet when you have e-cards, mobile payments and bitcoins. Retailers, bankers and marketers have been working on the easiest payment methods and they have reached a point of transferring sales to one-step transactions.

Mobile payments will revolutionize the web – we already have banking authorization pushes, that enable easy payment validations, Google Wallet money transfers and a MasterCard promised “selfie pay” – photo taking to verify online purchases. Point-of- sale will be approaching closer and closer to the customer, whether it will be an online store or a regular one.

Door to door delivery

Though Amazon is the prime leader in delivery ? Think again. Even if they develop drone delivery “Prime Air”, merchants are on the run to figure out something even more efficient. Uber will offer same day delivery, pick-up networks are developed, and ship-from- store is becoming a strongly recognisable service. 2017 will be a year of convenient and returnable delivery : easy for the customer, easy to carry, easy to try on and choose from. Retailers will be soon better than Santa Claus himself.

Being a part of your customers life

Social Media & Human-mobile interactions are the engagement meeting points for business and clients. Relations are made not only when purchase happens, but transfer the engagement to social media, web and beyond – conversations, recommendations, long- lasting clients.

Instagram, Facebook, Messenger and Pinterest have their solutions on e-commerce (pinable price tags, sores & marketplaces, bots), and the trend in connecting users with sales at every possible point.

In 2017 we will see a rising user engagement in e-commerce – clients like to add mentions and tags on the photos and posts – make sure your brand has a perfect visibility on the web. While customers are becoming more personally engaged in the purchase process, e-commerce owners will have to personalise their customer experience and be present where the customer is.

What do you think will be the biggest trend in e-commerce this year? Tell us below or Tweet us!