Fueled in part by the ongoing effects of a worldwide pandemic, ecommerce around the world is rising at a steady pace, with a noticeable shift in consumer behavior towards online shopping. In fact, it is estimated that by the year 2040, 95% of purchases will take place online. It’s safe to say that digital commerce has now taken center stage, and businesses around the world are racing to join the ecommerce revolution.
In order to better prepare for a digital future, brands and retailers are constantly on the lookout for ways to drive their ecommerce brand forward. We look at some of the emerging ecommerce trends that will help elevate your business and boost your sales in the digital economy.
1. Personalised Experiences and Customer Engagement
One thing that consumers miss from traditional retail shopping is the personalised experience that comes from interacting with a retail person. This personal connection is something that they look for in their online experience, too, with 80% of consumers being more likely to do business with a company that personalises their experience. This means that it’s no longer enough to simply ship out a product in a box. Rather, ecommerce businesses should build their strategy around putting their customer first. This could mean setting up automated product recommendations or unique subscription programs, featuring inclusive sizing and diversity of models, or even something as simple as prioritising accessibility to their website by making sure it’s navigable by persons of all abilities. These simple steps demonstrate a commitment to creating lasting emotional connections with customers, thus ensuring their return.
2. Online Product Customisation
Beyond the wholly personalised experience of shopping, customers are also increasingly expecting customised products. This is where 3D technology can take a company’s ecommerce store to a whole other level of success. Product customisation technology like Threedium’s 3D Product Configurator invites customers to become partners in the product creation process by allowing them to experiment with different versions of the product. Customers can change colors, materials, and styles until they create exactly what they are looking for. This further strengthens the user experience for the customer, and in return, increases engagement levels, product dwell times, and creates better opportunities for conversions.
3. Custom Packaging
In the age of ecommerce, the product isn’t the only desirable part of making a purchase. Rather, the act of simply opening the packaging holds a special kind of appeal, one that has recently launched the popular trend of ‘unboxing’ videos. These videos have generated 11.3 billion views on YouTube, with at least 62% of people viewing them as research for products they are looking to purchase. It is therefore not surprising that offering customised packaging that makes a brand recognizable has become a successful ecommerce marketing tool. Aesthetically pleasing, custom packaging gives a certain air of exclusivity to a product, makes it more likely to garner brand visibility on social media, and helps make an immediate, lasting impact on customers.
4. Augmented Reality
There is a strong need to interact with a product before committing to a purchase, and where once high-quality images and videos were enough, today’s consumers are asking for more ways to see and feel a product before clicking buy. This is where AR comes in. Augmented reality has seen a recent explosion in popularity, with Gartner estimating that by 2020, more than 100 million will have bought products using AR. With tools like Threedium’s AR Solutions, more and more ecommerce retailers are bridging the gap between real and digital, enabling shoppers to see products in their actual surroundings, explore and try different angles and styles, until they find the right match. Such Augmented Reality solutions require no extra plugins or applications, and are extremely easy to integrate into ecommerce stores. For consumers, this means a more immersive shopping experience and confident and informed purchasing decisions. For businesses, this means higher conversion rates and fewer returns.
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