eCommerce has seen tremendous growth since the beginning of the pandemic. The onset of the pandemic has forced retailers and customers to shop online – be it essentials or luxury items. With the implementation of lockdown worldwide, the availability and accessibility of day-to-day commodities became a next to impossible task. It was the online market that made the delivery of these essentials convenient. It’s not only B2C and D2C business models that have taken the road of e-retailing. A lot of B2B businesses have also found the digital commerce platform and eCommerce trends 2022 productive and profitable. Analyzing the status quo, it is evident that B2B, D2C and B2C eCommerce is here to stay and grow tremendously.
Online shopping has had its impact worldwide. The e-retail revenues are projected to grow to 5.4 trillion US dollars in 2022. It is also estimated that in 2023, eCommerce retail purchases might rise from 14.1% to 22%.
Here’re the top 8 eCommerce trends 2022 that will impact the online retail business:
Augmented Reality or AR has changed customer product interactions. Getting a virtual tour of the product gallery and interacting with the 3D product model is a novel experience. With AR, businesses can create interactive and life-size 3D models for different products. With these realistic models, customers can visualize how the products will look and fit in their homes and offices. A shopping experience like this will certainly be unusual and endearing for the customers.
AR commerce is emerging as one of the major trends in eCommerce that can boost product sales, provide an enriching customer experience, increase repeat customer rates, reinforce customer satisfaction, and hike the average revenue per online shopper. The farfetched augmented reality is now an actual reality. It gives customers the pleasure of shopping for a product using a digital medium that is equally good as shopping in a retail outlet.
The above example displays a sofa as shown with the IKEA Place app via Augmented Reality. For a long time, IKEA has been employing bleeding-edge technologies like AR to help shoppers choose products with utmost accuracy like they would do while shopping at a physical store.
The IKEA Place App allows consumers to view their furniture preferences in their homes at different placements and color variations. The best part about this app: it scans the room to identify its dimensions and then shows options that would fit with 98% accuracy. Not only does this app increase online sales and conversions but it also reduces returns by a whopping margin.
Acing the list of the upcoming eCommerce trends 2022 is MACH commerce. MACH architecture supports building specific business functionalities that can be managed independently. The frontend and backend utilities are connected through various APIs, enabling them to run as decoupled units. Such a headless commerce architecture allows the freedom to modify the frontend store as per customer expectations, prevailing trends, and market dynamics for the ever-increasing number of touchpoints without being influenced by the backend system. This mutual exclusion between the frontend and the backend lets the customers access the eCommerce store via various channels like desktops, laptops, tablets, mobile phones, and other digital devices.
The advantages of MACH commerce are seamless frontend and backend development, flexibility to scale, easy customization for enriched customer experience, improved security and enhanced speed during peak traffic, all of which make a perfect fit for competitive brands.
BOPIS retail is one of the best retail strategies in the digital commerce ecosystem. It is one of the latest ecommerce trends 2022 that focuses on building a customer-centric shopping experience. It gives customers the benefit of browsing and selecting a product from the comfort of their homes and getting the product as per their convenience without waiting for the traditional delivery system.
This eCommerce scheme is favourable for customers and retailers. Customers can shop anything from anywhere and anytime. They do not have to wait for the delivery person to receive their desired product. They also save on the shipping cost and get the option of paying for the product only after picking it up. Customers can check the product while picking it up and return it if the piece is damaged or unsuitable. Also, the risk of the product getting stolen after delivery becomes zero.
With BOPIS, retailers have also seen incredible business growth, new upselling and cross-selling opportunities, increased sales, reduced shipping costs, and trouble-free inventory management.
The above example is from Petco, a pet food retailer, which, thanks to BOPIS solutions, saw an increase in their overall online sales by 48% in 2018. The best part about BOPIS: customers are more likely to purchase additional products when picking up their orders in-store.
BNPL has changed the way B2B and B2C eCommerce functioned a couple of years ago. This payment option enables the customers to make a purchase and facilitate the payment via a third party that pays on their behalf. Of course, customers need to register their details with a third party that takes care of the payment. Once the payment is processed, the customers get their product, and they repay the amount to the third party within a fixed period. This way, customers don’t have to pay for the product immediately and can do so in fixed installments.
This secure payment solution prevents customers from sharing their confidential financial information on digital retail platforms or even saving their cards for future purchases. The BNPL-empowered one-tap payment option gives customers the liberty to pay the amount in EMIs, so the burden of making the full payment in one go is further minimized.
Retailers benefit from this scheme as they receive the complete payment on time, which boosts their sales, grows revenue, and promotes their business comprehensively. Realizing the promising future that BNPL can provide, Atome, hoolah, Rely, Openpay, and many other fintechs are successfully offering this feature to their customers. BNPL is thus one of the significant and global trends in eCommerce.
The above example is from Boohoo, a fast-fashion US giant offering four different BNPL solutions. When you click on the product page, you find all the three BNPL options displayed under the description section. Of course, each BNPL offering comes with a different set of terms and conditions, but still, all of them allow you to pay in installments comfortably.
Undeniably, data is a treasure trove for businesses, especially the digital retail landscape. Every interaction, click, like, wishlisted item, or ‘add to cart’ action generates data that can be used by merchants to personalize eCommerce interactions and experiences. The actionable insights derived from studying and analyzing raw data can help businesses with their marketing campaigns and activities.
Online retailers can enhance the customers’ shopping experience by presenting the customers with dynamic content as per their browsing history, purchase history, on-site interactions, demographics and more. Some excellent examples of personalized shopping are when customers get relevant suggestions on the eCommerce website like:
Offering a custom-curated, secure, and seamless shopping experience, retailers earn happy customers, rapid sales growth, increased repeat purchases, reduced cart abandonment rates, and escalated word-of-mouth publicity.
In eCommerce, sustainability is related to the justified use of resources while facilitating the customers with desired products and services. When it comes to shopping, whether in physical stores or on eCommerce websites, a lot of trash is produced in the form of unsold products, damaged goods, returned orders, actual physical space that runs on electricity, undelivered packages, and more. Not using the available resources fruitfully contributes to severe issues like global warming, piling up of non-degradable waste material, and climate change.
It is projected that by 2025, the global eCommerce plastic packaging waste might rise to 4533 million pounds.
Sustainable and safe eCommerce solutions offer eco-friendly and reusable packaging, sell environment-friendly products, educate their customers about the benefits of a sustainable future, and follow the principle of 3Rs – reduce, reuse and recycle. Building a sustainable eCommerce platform for restoring the ecological balance is one of the latest eCommerce trends 2022.
For example, H&M has been giving out shopping boxes that can be turned into clothes hangers. Moreover, these shopping bags are made from paper that is 80% recycled, unlike the traditional bags available. Considering the audience group of the brand, it includes shoppers between 18-35 of age, concerned about the environment, and eager to indulge with brands offering sustainable packaging solutions.
A part of customization and personalization is offering customers to browse the products listed on an eCommerce website via voice commands. Another aspect of elevating customer experience is when customers can chat with bots or other automated messaging apps to easily resolve their queries. Voice commerce has also enabled customers to search for products in different languages and dialects also playing a pivotal role in serving differently-abled customers.
Amazon India now facilitates customers to search for a localized product in their local language by using voice commands on their website as well as their app. This type of technology is more than just innovation; it touches the heart of customers to the core and leaves a profound impact.
The above example is from Nestle that launched the GoodNes Alexa skill to offer a visual voice-led browsing experience to its customers. This feature helps coffee lovers in enhancing their coffee-making skills via voice and visual guidance. GoodNes Alexa functions as a visual guide for customers and can be easily accessed on Safari or Chrome (both web and mobile).
The modern customers use not one but several channels (mobile, web, social, in-store, emails, etc.) to purchase a product or service online. This use of diverse channels for buying products and services necessitates retailers to be omnipresent and deliver an omnichannel customer experience.
Sometimes retailers provide additional discounts on the products if customers buy them from a mobile app instead of a website. In a different scenario, customers might add a few products to the shopping cart via a social store after being presented with a sponsored ad or an irresistible offer. Therefore, retailers must offer an omnichannel customer experience across the evolving number of intersection points and devices.
For a seamless shopping experience, it should be easy for customers to continue shopping on the new device, right from where they had left in a different channel. The shopping cart must be updated to reflect changes made in one device onto the other device. Also, the resolution, image clarity, quantity, colour, size, payment options, and discounts offered on the products should be consistent across different breakpoints. And this is exactly what omnichannel commerce offers!
Oasis, a clothing brand, based out of the UK, offers its customers an exquisite way to shop from their websites, mobile app, social store, and more. On top of it, customers can view the same product at their convenience across several devices and platforms, thus offering them an omnichannel customer experience.
Unsurprisingly, eCommerce is leading the fourth wave of the industrial revolution. These upcoming eCommerce trends 2022 will pave the way for the innovative future of online shopping and state how emerging and bleeding-edge techs can disrupt the digital platform and benefit the customers and the retailers. The integration of these major trends in the eCommerce industry also ensures cyber secure and safe data governance practices that can only be used to boost customer satisfaction. By incorporating these latest eCommerce trends 2022, businesses can offer competitive solutions and improve customers’ shopping experiences.
A customer-centric eCommerce platform is just a consultation away.