In the last years, the retail industry took a massive digital turn. Indeed, more than half of the money spent in physical stores has been influenced by digital ($.56 of every $1).

Today, the E-Commerce industry is taking over. Three of the world’s top five retailers are internet-first. One of them is American (Amazon), and two are Chinese (Alibaba and JD.com).  This industry is so powerful that 56% of global shoppers use Amazon. This digital store’s emergence changed the way people consume: 28% of Amazon users say that they shop less often in physical stores, while 18% of them shop less on other E-Commerce stores.

What can explain Amazon’s domination? Is Amazon a trend-setter? Or does Amazon just follow trends? What are these trends? Let’s answer these questions.

M-Commerce

Nowadays, you can’t mention E-Commerce without thinking about smartphone use. Indeed, Mobile Commerce is expected to make up half of total E-Commerce sales by the end of 2019.

Digital stores have to integrate apps to their strategy if they want to reach and convert as much consumers as they want. As E-Commerce changed the way people consume, we now feel the need to get our products faster than ever before, which is why people rely so much on smartphones to shop online.

85% of consumers say they are unlikely to continue doing business with a company after having a bad mobile experience. This means that the company’s website wasn’t responsive or adaptive and didn’t the users’ smartphone’s screen. This is why it is important for internet retailers to test their online shops on mobile before launching.

E-Commerce sellers have to offer the most comfortable and easiest comfortable experience to their customers, including on mobile.

Social media

We see a lot of brands going viral on social media. It is becoming rare to go on social media without seeing promoting content from this or that brand in our feed. According to Business Insider, social shopping accounted for an estimated $6.5 billion for the top 500 retailers in 2017 (+24% compared to 2016).

This shows that people are more and more accommodated to seeing brands promoting their content on social media. It is becoming easier and more natural for brands to broadcast their products and these social platforms. This new way of doing is so popular that consumers are no longer finding brands by natural searches, but through social media (+146% from 2016 to 2017).

I want to know more

Connected devices

It’s hard to browse the internet without reading about new connected devices being made available to large audiences. We hear a lot about smart speakers, since Amazon, Apple and Google launched their own a few years ago.

Smart speakers represent a huge opportunity for E-Commerce sellers, since they represent a new way of browsing for consumers. New way of browsing for consumers, new way of selling for digital shops. 54% of people who own smart speakers use it at least once a day, 55% of them used their devices to search for products, and 44% used it to make a purchase.

It is advised to E-Commerce sellers to test their software, website, apps, etc. to ensure that they can integrate this trend correctly to their strategy. Some brands started integrating shop-by-voice features to let customers order directly from their apps, instead of losing them to Google or Amazon.

Faster delivery

The least we can say, it is that Amazon Prime changed the delivery game. Indeed, customers got used to getting their parcels delivered the day after, or even the same day they ordered them. There is a real need for faster supply chain, shipping and delivery. This is why E-Commerce shops need to adjust their shipping policy to their customers’ demands.

IBM found that AI has the potential to make the biggest impact on the supply chain. It has been known that artificial intelligence would have a great impact on the E-Commerce industry and its supply chain. In fact, early adopters of AI saw profit margins more than 10% higher than of non-adopters.

Omnichannel

Brick-and-mortar commerce industry is still going strong. Retail sales represent roughly 90% of total sales. Omnichannel represents the balance between the digital and physical world.

A good and smooth omnichannel experience is important to retailers because it leads to higher customer engagement. Shoppers who spent time on the shop’s website will spend 4% more time in their physical location. As always, personalization is an important part of the strategy, so you should think about providing a personalized experience. 4.7% people say they would increase their in-store spending with a more personalized experience. This 4.7% represents an extra $150 billion.

How to be aware of these trends?

Being aware of these trends allow E-Commerce sellers to anticipate their visitors’ needs. They should always keep an eye on the market leaders like Amazon, Walmart, Target or Nike, who are also leaders in customer experience, according to Foresee’s Experience Index.

Also, a good crowdtesting strategy would allow you to anticipate your clients’ needs. Create forms, and organize QA sessions to get to know your customers and their requirements.

Finally, choose the right analytics tools to know which devices your customers use when they visit your website, in order to adapt your UX.

I want to download Applause’ eBook