A new year, a new calendar, and a whole set of new opportunities. E-commerce in 2020 will bring many innovative trends. There are many options for merchants to explore. E-Commerce industry needs to adapt to change else they run the risk of falling behind the competition. Every trend needs to be adequately studied to figure out if it will work for the business or not. We are listing 13 trends that include technology and future trends and other E-commerce trends in 2020 :
1. Online plus offline stores
No matter how advanced the e-commerce industry becomes, people still love to shop offline. Physical stores offer more assistance and a lot of other features that are not available online. Amazon already has up physical stores to bridge the gap between online and offline selling. People shop online to save time and hassle to drive to the store and wait in long queues. Stores could provide the option of picking products online and buying offline. Reliance is also planning to adopt these E-commerce trends in 2020.
2. Social commerce
Facebook and Whatsapp have already become a significant marketplace; Instagram is also becoming very popular for online marketing. Giving the option to add or buy directly from social media websites can be a big hit. This E-commerce trend in 2020 will see a significant rise. Majority big players are already using social media as a sales platform; smaller stores should also start utilizing them.
3. Multi-channel selling
Offline Online selling is also a part of Multichannel selling. But Multi-channel selling isn't just limited to the brick and mortar store and a digital store. It includes Kiosks, Virtual stores, Catalogues, Door to door selling, Setting stores in fairs, trade expos. Going digital doesn't mean you can relax because the customers will come to you. You have to make every possible effort to reach the customers.
4. Recommerce (resale of used products)/ Renting
The new generation doesn't shy away from renting or buying refurbished stuff. In this era of fast-moving fashion, people often keep purchase products without even utilizing them fully. Hence you can get old products which are as good as new and sell them at a cheaper rate. If people can buy pre-owned cars, they definitely won't mind purchasing pre-owned products that are generally a bit expensive. Another great option is renting out. Products like Bridal dresses, prom dresses, Jewellery, Cameras, Sports gear, Adventure sports gear, Bikes, etc. can be rented out for a cheaper rate.
5. Fulfilment options expand (provide an option for pick up if the shipping cost is high)
A primary reason for cart abandonment is the high shipping cost and shipping time. Stores can provide options for pick up in a nearby location. This will also help with gaining customer's trust as he can check the product on his own and get a clearer picture of the return policy.
6. Subscription model
Subscription Model can be followed by stores that offer products with low shelf life or high consumption, such as coffee or products that need to be renewed periodically, such as a Water filter candle. Discounts, special offers can be given to customers who opt for subscriptions.
7. Voice recognition ( people can buy or find products through Alexa)
Optimize your products for voice searches. According to eMarketer, in 2017, 35.6 million Americans used a voice-activated device at least once per month – a 128.9 percent over 2016. This usage is likely to grow much more in the coming years. Stores should not wait till the last moment to get in the voice search race. This trend is more of a technology trend in E-commerce.
8. Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality
This is the age of fast-moving technology. While one should not wholly abandon traditional ways of selling, it is essential that you go the extra mile to enhance the customer experience. Stores like IKEA provide the option of Augmented reality for customers to explore how a lounge or a bed would look in their room. With Virtual reality, one can offer virtual products and virtual showrooms. AR/VR is the new try before you buy option. Though this trend will take a bit of time to catch up, we can categorize it as a future trend in E-commerce.
9. Customizable Products
Selling customized items can be a big selling point. Stores like Trunki give an option to customize colours of every part of the product. When stores give the option to customize a product, the customer feels that he/she can get his money's worth.
10. Different Payment Options
Many times, while buying something from international stores, the payment options are minimal. Hence adding multiple payment options will help reduce cart abandonment due to the lack of payment options.
Chatbots are already a trend in E-commerce technology. Chatbots generally send out automated replies, but they are the most convenient tool to engage customers even if you are busy. The customer also has a means easily accessible to him to establish contact with you.
12. Customer Service after the sale
Your relationship and contact with the customer should not end once the product has reached them. You must reach out to them to find out if they need any help or assistance in using the product. Offer them a channel to connect with you post-sales in case they face any issue in the future.
13. Customer Feedback
Customer reviews will always remain a trend. No matter how popular a product is, people will ask the consumer if they like the product or not. Hence the feedback, negative or positive, is a must. Give them an option to attach photos/videos along with text review. If possible, get the input over a phone call. This gives a personal touch to your customer service.
The above points are all the major E-commerce trends in the year 2020. One need not adopt all the above trends but can make use of combinations or specific trends that may suit their business. It is also essential to keep a balance between new trends and traditional approaches. We hope that merchants can take advantage of these trends to serve their customers better. Flits team will keep merchants updated with new trends and also try to adapt them to the services we provide.