After a sleepy slump in 2022, ecommerce is gaining real momentum again: retail ecommerce sales worldwide are predicted to grow 8.9% in 2023 and 9.4% in 2024.1
As we round out the first half of the year, find out how to stay ahead of the game with our overview of the 4 major ecommerce trends that have emerged so far, and how they’re likely to progress.
1. KEEP IT PERSONAL
Personal touches appeal to today’s buyers: and 60% of consumers say they’ll become repeat customers after a personalised shopping experience.2 But what does this really mean in practice?
Businesses need to engage customers on the channels they like (social media? Email? YouTube?), in the way they like (short-form video content? Product-led photo ads?), and make recommendations based on the data they share. Truly customer-focused brands act on insights, often in real time, to offer a personalised marketing touch. Many choose to invest in tools that integrate data from multiple customer-facing sources at once to offer a complete picture. They might then use this data, for example, to present a fully personalised selection of products on a Facebook carousel ad. Or deliver a similar curated selection via email based on their past buying habits and customer profile.
2. MOBILE IS KING
You’ll need to embrace this mobile mentality by designing for mobile first: meaning fully responsive web design (across your homepage, product pages and cart/payment pages) and user-friendly journeys, including mobile payment options like Apple Pay and Google Pay that make it easy to buy in an instant. This is particularly important as one of the biggest reasons for cart abandonment is often a difficult payment or check-out process.
3. A FOCUS ON RETURNS
62% of shoppers would stop buying from a brand after a poor return experience. And conversely, 59% would buy more based on a good experience.4 What constitutes a ‘good’ experience? Customers like quick returns, immediate refunds, having a return label provided for them, free return shipping and long return windows. So it’s more important than ever to partner with a carrier who can handle your returns quickly, efficiently and affordably.
4. CROSS-BORDER ECOMMERCE
A retailer’s physical location is now much less of a barrier: consumers are happier than ever to shop across borders. eMarketer says the worldwide opportunity for digital commerce will reach $6.17 trillion in 2023. One significant part of this growth is the increase in cross-border sales — up 45% this year compared to pre-pandemic figures.4
This is a huge opportunity for any retailer, particularly those looking to tap into the European market. EU customers regularly buy from other countries: for example, a whopping 90% of consumers in France and Italy say they shopcross-border.4
What’s the secret to cross-border ecommerce success? The same as any digital shopping success:
- An airtight logistics process resulting in quick and reliable deliveries
- Online tracking to improve first-time delivery success and offer peace of mind
- Multiple flexible delivery and returns options (and preferably free returns!)
- A partner that can supply this support in the UK and your international buyers’ home countries to ensure they shop again.
From making it easier to pay on mobile to ensuring your logistics can support international shoppers, pivoting your business towards shoppers’ new habits is the best way to achieve online sales success in 2023.
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