The e-commerce platform has seen a lot of growth over the past years, and we can predict that it will retain the positive growth. Industry estimates show that the platform generated $2219 billion in the year 2018. The projection is that by 2021, the platform will account for almost $4500 million in revenue. Let us look at some of the latest eCommerce trends which will help you generate fantastic revenue.
Many trends can help you boost your income on the online platform. It is, however, essential that the customer experience remains the main focus. Think about aspects such as easy-to-use websites, the use of plugins, and extensions that will help improve the functionality of the site, among others. You also have the option of free and paid themes that will help with setting up an attractive website.
1. Marketing Automation
If you want to improve efficiency in your marketing efforts, then you must embrace technology resulting in the automation of your processes. With developments in areas such as intelligent learning, artificial intelligence, among others, you can do so many marketing functions that were arduous for anyone who was doing them manually. Take, for instance, email Marketing that continues to play a central role in marketing. Through the use of automation, you get to schedule how your emails go out.
Artificial intelligence will allow you to learn the behavior of your subscribers, thus enabling you to send targeted communication to them. It increases the click-through and open rate, and you have a higher chance of making conversions.
With increased efficiency, you lower the chances of abandoned carts because you can do things such as retargeting and remarketing. You can also do product recommendations, product listing, among others, while taking into consideration the behavior of your customers.
Marketing automation will enable the collection of relevant data and its analysis so that you can make the right decisions concerning your business.
2. Mobile eCommerce
Mobile and internet penetration is at an all-time high, and many people use their mobile devices to search for information on the online platform. You must, therefore, ensure that you optimize your website for mobile so that you can take advantage of all it has to offer. Platforms such as Google will give you a higher ranking depending on how mobile-friendly your website is.
Your web developer should advise you appropriately when building your eCommerce platform. You must ensure that you focus on giving your visitors a pleasant experience anytime they want to use their mobile devices to shop.
An expert tip is to consider designing your website for mobile and not for desktop appliances. You cannot afford to lose out on the opportunities available with regards to mobile eCommerce because of poorly designed sites.
3. Voice Search and Virtual Assistants
You must optimize your eCommerce platform for voice search. Whatever content you generate should be textual so that they appear as snippets and graphs. The modern customer likes convenience, and if they have a voice search, it makes it easier for them to get help using the virtual assistants.
Another critical area to consider is the use of chatbots. It helps you engage with your customers better because they feel like they are interacting with an actual human being. With chatbots, you get to increase efficiency because you automate the process. You also save on time because they will take up functions such as responding to customer queries, inviting them to your store, among other things.
You do not have to deal with the delays that are common when human beings are in charge of the processes. Such delays are due to unanswered telephone calls and the inability to fulfill orders, among others. Industry experts are very optimistic about the growth in the adoption of chatbots by companies. They estimate that by 2025, the sector could generate $1.25 billion through the sale of AI chatbots. Some companies set at Starbucks are already using voice commands to take customer orders and tally up costs.
4. Programmatic and contextual advertising
We foresee a situation where programmatic and context ads will play a more central role with regards to advertising. Programmatic advertising will decide on target audiences using the data set. It may, for example, use factors such as consumption to determine the kind of audiences it shows particular adverts. It is also an excellent way of retargeting if you hope to generate a higher return on investment (ROI).
Context advertising will also have a huge role to play. It uses subliminal messaging to advertise your products. You may, for example, find that in a movie, the actors consume certain brands. The audiences will build a connection with that particular brand because their favorite actors are using it.
Platforms such as Facebook will allow for much-targeted advertising because you get to segment your audience. Other platforms such as Google have Admob that allows you to run your advertising in between mobile games but in an intelligent manner. You avoid a situation where the user feels like you are intrusive. In the best-case scenario, the user will not even realize that he or she is viewing an ad.
Related Reading: How Should Small Ecommerce Businesses Promote Their Products Online?
5. Multiple payment options for quick checkout
We already have so many payment options available for anyone who is operating on the online platform. We have traditional forms such as cash, credit, and debit cards. Also, there are third-party gateways such as PayPal, Google Play, and Amazon pay, among others.
Cryptocurrencies and digital payments are the New Kids on the Block, and we can foresee other industry-specific options coming into play. The use of mobile-based payments also provides an effective and efficient way of completing transactions. If you are operating on the online platform, you must embrace the payment options because you need the checkout process as seamless as possible for your customers. Many customers will abandon carts if they face challenges when trying to make their payments.
6. The Use Of Video To Advertise Your Products
It may not necessarily come as a surprise to you that videos are fantastic ways to advertise your products. Just like having an eye-catching website, your audiences will engage better with videos, than if you were to present them with brochures that are full of text. It is, therefore, not uncommon to find so many people on the online platform using videos as part of their marketing strategies. With videos, you also get the opportunity to do tutorials and how-to videos.
With the right kind of content, you can easily convince a customer to make that final purchasing decision.
Ensure that the kind of content you produce is high quality and one that anyone will be happy to interact with. You need clear pictures, clear sound, an engaging presenter, and good knowledge of your content.
Use the right platform to create a responsive slider for your videos. You must also carefully monitor what you do so that you get to see what kind of content your subscribers actively engage with. Encourage them to subscribe to your pages so that you build your organic community.
7. Think About Your Shipping
More and more people operating on the eCommerce platform are realizing the importance of hassle-free shipping. The main concern the customer has is whether or not you will get the goods to them on time and in good condition. If you can satisfy these two conditions, you will have no problem retaining your customers.
Customers are also very conscious about how much the shipping will cost them because it will impact on the overall price of whatever they are buying. You will be able to generate more sales if you can offer free shipping. If it is not possible, think about how you can introduce more flexibility and more benefits so that you retain your customers.
8. Customer Experience
The way you treat your customers is a never-ending, always evolving trend. You must ensure efficiency so that customers always feel like you are taking good care of them. With automation, you can use technology to improve some of the functions significantly.
However, you cannot entirely turn your business over to technology. You must keep up with what customers are saying. You must also respond to any concerns they may have. Deliver high-quality goods and services so that they keep coming back. Businesses that have 24/7 customer support tend to do very well and often have fantastic reviews about the level of customer service.
Even if it is not possible for you to have this level of customer service, find a way to collect the information and get back to the customers promptly. It is not uncommon to see signs such as …. ‘We are open for business within such and such a time.’ You can also alert your customers that you will respond to the queries within x number of hours. Now it is up to you to ensure that you keep your word and do what you need to.
It is essential that the customer feels safe with you, and that is why you need to invest in the right level of security for your eCommerce store. When a customer gives you the information, they want the assurance that you will take good care of it.
The user experience on your website must be excellent. Only work with a web developer who has the relevant experience. It can be frustrating if your website does not respond as it should.
9. Social Media And Blogs
Use social media and blogs to sell your products. There is no marketing list without a mention of the role social media has to play for any business. Some companies have in-house teams that handle their platforms, while others will hire freelancers to do it for them.
You get access to an extensive customer base and can take advantage of the advertising opportunities on these platforms. Social media is interactive, and you must, therefore, ensure that you engage with your audiences. Respond to any queries they may have promptly and listen to what they have to say with a keen ear.
Some people have seen the negative side of social media because they do not have too much control over what people say. However, if you find the right way to respond to any issues, even the negative ones, you will see an increase in the number of followers. Use the platforms to run your promotional campaigns and targeted marketing.
Blogs are an excellent way to position yourself as an authority in the industry. You also get to share your knowledge about the different products and can become the go-to source for information. Apply the right themes and plugins to ensure your website stands out.
Dropshipping presents an exciting business opportunity for anyone who does not have a large amount of capital. You are the middleman between the seller and the customers. The latter will place the order with you; then, you forward the requests to the supplier who will ensure that the customers receive the goods in good condition. At no point in the transaction, do you get to handle the products physically? You do not keep any inventory, thus saving you a lot of money. You also do not have to contend with any overhead costs.
Find the right suppliers who will be able to fulfill the orders. It takes so much more than a good business portfolio to find success at Dropshipping. Check the quality of goods because ultimately, it is your reputation that will be in the dumpster if the products are of poor quality.
Take the time to see what other people have to say about the supplier before you decide to work with them. Pay attention to things like how fast they respond to customer orders. You must also check how long they take before shipping the products.
There are so many eCommerce trends that can help you generate more revenue for your business. We have mentioned a few, but there are so many others, such as multi-channel selling, Omni Channel personalization, Custom packaging, among others.