What Are The 5 Ecommerce Trends You Need To Know For 2020?

By Rodney Laws | Ecommerce

Dec 09

The last few years have seen ecommerce explode, with all manner of creative methods to hold our attention, convince us to buy and make the payment process as seamless as possible.

For ecommerce business owners in 2020, the challenge is staying on top of technological advancements, a changing consumer base more environmentally conscious than ever and increased competition.

To prepare your website for a new year take a look at these five ecommerce trends you need to know before 2020.

Interactive product visualization

Customers know there’s an element of pot-luck to shopping online. It’s hard to be sure what you’re ordering online is exactly what’s going to turn up at your door. This has led to customers becoming interested in seeing products in increasingly more detail online.

Customers want an idea of how it feels, looks and exists in their reality, rather than just in a stylized photograph. This trend is particularly pertinent in the fashion industry, where many of the bigger brands have begun to offer 3D interpretation of their products.

Interactive product visualizations are the online equivalent of going into the shop and picking up the product. This kind of presentation goes beyond what a shot of a model or a well-written product description can achieve. With new visual methods such as virtual reality on the rise, consider the detail in which customers want to see your products before buying.

Chatbots and private messaging

Chatbots and AI have become commonplace in our web-browsing experience, and there’s no reason that can’t translate into ecommerce. In the world of online sales, there’s no time to waste. If your customer is frustrated on your website and there’s no customer service rep on the other end of the phone, you’ve likely lost the sale. What does this mean? It’s time to invest in multiple communication channels.

Chatbots are a solution you can implement any time of day. They can be used to answer customer queries and save you money on hiring people to be on the other end of the phone 24 hours a day.

An important element of how this trend will develop is personalization. People are comfortable with the presence of AI while online and have no problem using them to solve a problem, but they still prefer a more personalized experience.

Personalized email targeting and recommended products have been extremely successful marketing tactics in the last few years, so a chatbot that can assist and recommend based on browsing habits is the next logical trend.

Second-hand commerce

Re-commerce, second-hand commerce — whatever you want to call it, it’s a developing trend within ecommerce set to explode in 2020. A focus on sustainability in our culture has lead to an increase in demand for used clothes. While charity shops are booming ecommerce has yet to really take hold of this cultural shift.

There is a huge market for vintage and used clothing, especially amongst economically-poorer and environmentally-concerned younger people. Some people just love finding a bargain too.

Tailoring your ecommerce store to re-commerce opens a wide scope for attracting a strong shopping demographic, while not being beholden to reinventing and reimagining for each season like regular fashion retailers are.

It also lends itself to a strong existing community of influencers, looking to delve deeper into sustainability themselves. Just make sure you have a solid returns strategy worked out.

Increase in social shopping

Social selling has been a huge trend in the last few years, with Facebook alone taking huge revenue from advertising by ecommerce businesses. Paid adverts and marketplace features have turned our social media channels into shopping platforms seamlessly integrated into our everyday life. It’s not enough to just sell now though — social shopping should be an extension of your brand and appeal to user habits.

Online retailers are only going to get more creative in their marketing on social platforms. To combat this a focus on further reduction in effort and time from first contact to sale is needed. To properly take advantage of this trend and shopper’s preference for social media, the process needs to be as simple and instantaneous as possible.

New payment/buying options

How your customers buy is just as important as what they buy and how they get to the checkout. People have become accustomed to paying in their preferred method. Think about how commonplace contactless payment is. People are less willing to accept a less advanced method of buying.

Whether it’s using their Apple Wallets, PayPal or even Bitcoin, customers of the future will want to use the method they’re most comfortable to get through the process as fast as possible. The payment methods you offer can help push a sale over the line or completely kill it, so make sure this is a trend you’re following.

Alternative payment methods don’t just cover what cards or online wallets you take. Buying through home devices such as Amazon Alexa and Google Home is becoming more common and likely the next ecommerce battlefield. Meanwhile options such as Klarna which allow users to buy now, pay later attracts a customer base that previously couldn’t be reached at all.

Predicting the habits and preferences of customers in the future can be incredibly difficult, especially as new technologies completely change the game. But staying on top of making your website and buying process as personalized and considerate as possible will give you the best chance to stay ahead of the trend in 2020.