We all know it – the global market is unstoppably evolving. With the endless technical discoveries and perpetual innovations, all things online, including shopping trends, have become our norm. eCommerce is now a standard and the most efficient sales model for many. It has numerous perks, becoming increasingly favored among consumers, especially in the past months. And the prognosis is clear – the future of eCommerce is bright and promising.
Everything in 2020 has reshaped our ways, routines, jobs, and purchasing habits. The majority of companies have embraced remote work, which complies with the physical distancing health policies. eCommerce businesses now play the same role. Their part is more significant than ever. There’s no room for doubts – eCommerce is the future.
What is eCommerce?
Each time an individual or an organization buys or sells products and services online, they’re engaging in eCommerce. This business type is also known as electronic commerce or internet commerce. eCommerce definition incorporates several major market segments such as business to consumer, consumer to consumer, business to business, and consumer to business.
People and companies engage in eCommerce through various devices, like computers, laptops, smartphones, or tablets. From the customers’ perspective – the usage of the internet to obtain a specific product or acquire a service (instead of physically visiting a store or a service provider) is eCommerce.
Advantages of eCommerce
eCommerce has numerous advantages – from business owners’ point of view and consumers’ perspective.
The benefits of eCommerce include:
- A global reach for the sellers
- Lower costs and more profit
- More accessibility and a more flexible approach
- An efficient and time-saving business model for customers
- Better customer experience
- 24/7 availability
- Numerous ways to reach out (call center, live chat, social media, email, AI solutions, etc)
- Direct contact and better communication between a business and the consumers
It is safe to say that the future of eCommerce brings its unquestionable prevalence.
eCommerce Statistics from 2020
Despite global economic difficulties and unpredictability, eCommerce continues to rise at a fast rate. The forecasts suggest that by 2023 the number of online shops will reach 22% of all retail stores. There is an extensive analysis of eCommerce trends available on Statista. According to their eCommerce statistics and facts, there’s plenty of room to grow and develop this business model.
At this moment, the figures show us that a bit over 14% of retailers worldwide engage in eCommerce. Even though the future of eCommerce seems triumphant, the business owners must continuously keep their eyes on the new trends and stats to stay up to date.
Some of the noteworthy eCommerce statistics and facts for 2020 are:
- Over 2 billion consumers worldwide shop online
- The world’s fastest-growing eCommerce market is in China
- More than 50% of consumers prefer to pay with their credit cards
- More than 50% of current eCommerce purchasers use their smartphones for online shopping
According to a survey conducted by eCoomerceGuide, one-third of the consumers confirmed that they purchase products online at least once a week. Among other 2020 eCommerce statistics and trends, they have also discovered that around 9% of surveyed consumers use voice technology to shop.
- Pro Tip for eCommerce businesses:
Make free shipping available. According to various sources, the stats from the past two years show that free shipping represents one of the key factors in customer acquisition and loyalty.
- Pro Tip for eCommerce businesses:
Excellent eCommerce customer service also plays a vital role in customer experience, satisfaction, and retention. Numerous eCommerce businesses choose customer service outsourcing to easily attract and retain customers, drive more profit, and increase customer lifetime value (CLV).
The Most Important eCommerce Trends from 2020
As we said, eCommerce is continuously evolving and becoming more relevant and profitable. With a swiftly changing market and increasing customers’ needs, new eCommerce trends are inevitable. Forbes discovered the main three eCommerce trends to leverage in 2020.
Their top 3 eCommerce trends include:
- Providing customized experience to consumers by leveraging personalized eCommerce
- Boosting social media (and giving social proof) through Influencer Marketing
- High-quality visual material means more reliability
Still, these three important eCommerce trends for 2020 are the tip of the iceberg. There’s much more about this fast-growing industry we should learn and implement into our methods, businesses, and techniques. The future of eCommerce has much more to offer.
Top eCommerce Trends You Should Leverage in 2021
Some eCommerce businesses use Augmented Reality (AR) to enhance their customer experience. This perk helps online shoppers visualize the products that they’re interested in buying. Visually pleasing images and videos attract the viewers. However, the main reason to incorporate AR into the future of eCommerce is the mutual trust it achieves.
A prediction says that 75% of American households will own a smart speaker by 2025. More and more people turn to virtual assistants, and similar technologies will start to make buyers feel more comfortable using them. Voice search will become one of the top eCommerce trends in the years to come.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Customer service always represented a vital part of eCommerce. The traditional way to deal with it involves call center services. It affects every segment of the sales process (starting before the purchase and lasting way beyond its finalization). Artificial Intelligence solutions automate processes and could be helpful, but it’s not recommendable to exclude an actual customer service team.
Customer support outsourcing is often the best solution for eCommerce businesses. Still, combining AI and human support usually drives the optimal outcomes.
Turning to Mobile Users
Purchasing products online by using a mobile device is one of the most important eCommerce trends. Having all the facts and stats in mind, your eCommerce website needs to be well-optimized, mobile-friendly, and responsive.
Some businesses build progressive web apps (PWA) or mobile apps. Development always represented a significant part of eCommerce. Nowadays, it is more crucial than ever.
Businesses can build an eCommerce website or app in-house or turn to an outsourcing company.
Adding More Payment Options
Customers are continually asking for improvement when it comes to their interactions with online shops and service providers. The significance of a product’s quality, the punctuality and accuracy of the information obtained through a live chat or call center, and trouble-free payment systems should be on top of everyone’s priority list.
Creating Subscription Plans
Subscription-based eCommerce enables customers to subscribe to products or services they will need repeatedly. Subscription plans have several benefits for retailers and the future of eCommerce. They make it simpler to predict customer needs and their fulfillment and allow businesses to increase customer retention and add more value to the relationship.
Enhancing Digital Marketing Strategies
Building an adequate digital marketing strategy helps your business stand out. It can keep you ahead of your competition. You can improve your digital marketing strategies by employing freelance experts or specialized outsourcing companies.
Digital Marketing and Social Media roles are vital. However, hiring staff to fulfill these positions is time-consuming and often costly. Outsourcing tasks and responsibilities related to marketing is the best way to obtain desirable results fast and cut some of the costs.
A well-made and implemented marketing strategy leads to more conversions. Collaborating with a reliable outsourcing partner is the easiest way to boost your results.
eCommerce & Outsourcing
Hiring a third-party service provider to perform multiple significant job functions is a widespread business practice. Outsourcing represents a fundamental way to enhance your eCommerce business. And there are several business roles you should outsource with eCommerce.
Online businesses, especially retailers, can find outsourcing beneficial when they need to quickly and cost-effectively assemble:
- Sales agents
- Call center agents
- Marketing Strategists
- Social Media Specialists
- Content and Copy Writers and Editors
- Web developers and Designers
The benefits of outsourcing services have a massive impact on businesses. Some of the main reasons to consider this business practice is to:
- Save time
- Cut costs
- Increase the profits
- Acquire more customers
- Achieve better customer experience
- Become more productive
- Maximize employee satisfaction and lower the employee churn rate with outsourcing
- Scale your growth successfully
- Cover more areas
- Cover different time zones
Customer Service Outsourcing
Customer service always meant a lot when running an eCommerce business. The future of eCommerce demands paying even more attention to this aspect and finding new ways of reaching desired results.
While numerous new eCommerce trends are emerging, customer service outsourcing remains one of the most influential business practices.
The main reasons to outsource eCommerce customer service include:
- Improved customer experience
- Increased customer lifetime value
- Better resource management
- Enhanced efficiency
- More flexibility
- Obtaining more coverage
- Multi-channel support
- Multi-language support
Outsourcing services help eCommerce businesses reach their full potential trouble-free. Excellent customer service is a competitive advantage, and it guarantees lasting positive results. All you need to do to ensure your eCommerce success is to find the right outsourcing company.
eCommerce in a Post-pandemic World
COVID-19 pandemic has changed the future of eCommerce as we know it. Even though the digital transformation represented a major buzzword in the past few years, companies didn’t grasp its true significance until 2020. COVID-19 has affected all markets and businesses and altered the retail ecosystem.
Although we still have more traditional retail stores at our disposal globally, the eCommerce trends and statistics show that the number of online sellers and service providers keeps growing.