Any Other Business: 15 January 2021

Anna Thompson
Anna Thompson
Discover content team
3 min read
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furnished living room

This week’s AOB looks at the latest e-commerce news from around the world including B2B’s digital progression, and which products made Etsy’s 2021 trend list.

living room with computer on a desk

Home comforts still a focus for consumers in 2021

Online marketplace Etsy1 has unveiled its trend predictions for 20212. According to the platform, this year will be about creating connections to home, small businesses and nature – perhaps unsurprising given the current pandemic.

Interior design will remain top of mind for customers as they redecorate their homes to accommodate their new work-from-home lifestyles, whilst "stylish comfort" will drive virtual workers' wardrobes this year. Luxury pet items also made the trend list, and sky blue is Etsy's "Color of the Year" pick.

Are you thinking of selling on Etsy? Check out our guide to the best online marketplaces for tips to get started.

woman in a mask looking at a shelves

Research suggests online shoppers less likely to impulse buy

New data from Nielsen3 has revealed that the pandemic caused omnichannel shopping – where consumers shop both online on e-commerce stores and in-store – to grow by 50% in the US last year4.

When examining US consumers' levels of engagement across channels, 56% of online shoppers put "careful consideration" into each purchase at the point of sale, compared with 51% of bricks-and-mortar shoppers – findings which highlight the need for merchants to invest in their digital offering to ensure that customers reach the checkout page. Follow these e-commerce tips to ensure your online presence is up to scratch.

cosmetic bottles on a table

How to attract young shoppers: social media and sustainability

New research from Shopify5 has revealed the key concerns and behaviors of millennial and Gen Z shoppers. and their shopping habits The e-commerce company analyzed data from over one million merchants worldwide and collected survey insights from more than 10,000 global consumers in 11 countries.

The study found changes in purchasing habits that has led to 70% of 18 to 34-year-olds now spending more time online as a result of the pandemic6. Social media has become a key driver of brand discovery with over half (54%) of shoppers in that age group using social media platforms to find brands and a third (33%) making purchases through social channels.

Furthermore, younger shoppers are more concerned with the environmental impact of their purchases: 63% said they prefer to shop for sustainable products to help their Ecological footprint compared to 54% of 35 to 54-year-olds and 39% of over 55s.

woman picking medicine from a shelf

Millennial buyers drive B2B online

The B2B sector is undergoing a transformative period as it moves towards a more digital approach. A recent survey7 of B2B buyers of healthcare and medical supplies has unveiled some insights into the change.

89% of B2B decision makers cite digital commerce as a key driver of expected growth. 76% of buyers rate the ease of finding information as a top priority prior to purchase, whilst just over three quarters of B2B buyers of medical products said they conduct extensive product research before placing a digital order.

Interestingly, millennials now make up 50% of B2B buyers, which could explain the shift to an online buying process.


UK platform eyes up Amazon’s market share

Online marketplace OnBuy8 has announced plans for global expansion following success in the UK. The company – which sells millions of products across a range of categories – is aiming to launch into more than 140 countries by the end of 2023.

Last year, OnBuy enjoyed rapid growth due, in part, to the pandemic's boost to the e-commerce sector. "2020 skyrocketed our expansion and we are now growing at a phenomenal rate," said CEO Cas Paton9. "With over 600 sellers onboarded each month last year, we're on track to claim around five percent of the UK e-commerce market in the next three years. We're aiming for one percent of the global e-commerce market in the next five years alongside that."

Discover which online marketplaces you should be selling on with our dedicated guide.

1 - Etsy

2 - Etsy's 2021 trends predictions, Etsy Blog, December 2020

3 - Nielsen

4 - Nielsen research, December 2020

5 - Shopify

6 - Future of Commerce: 2021, Shopify

7 - Apruve Inc. survey, Digital Commerce 360, January 2021

8 - OnBuy

9 - Cas Paton, Ecommerce News Europe, January 2021