Thanks to the ever changing technology and digital devices becoming more and more accessible, ecommerce industry has witnessed tremendous growth in recent times. According to Forrester, online sales in the U.S will top by $523 billion in the next five years. It has also been predicted that there will be a remarkable ecommerce growth in the Asian markets with the highest online sales taking place in China.
More and more retailers today are moving from traditional platforms and are making the most of the latest technological advancements for their ecommerce website development. Mobiles are leading the way and all the businesses are adapting mobile responsive technologies to flourish with their businesses. The advent of Omnichannel commerce is also creating waves with its mission to offer customers with an integrated shopping experience.
To help you navigate through these changes happening in the ecommerce industry we bring you some of the latest ecommerce trends from technology perspective that may help you succeed in the year 2017.
1. Mobile commerce getting more popular
Mobiles have emerged as clear winners as the traffic on mobile-friendly ecommerce sites surpassed the desktop in the year 2016. And it goes without saying that they are here to stay and will most likely become even more popular in 2017. Google has also forced ecommerce stores to go mobile responsive to be able to rank high on their search engine. It is advisable that the business owners of today enhance the customer experience for the mobile websites. They must also integrate their websites well with the mobile wallets and provide an effortless checkout process.
2. Making payments through apps
Mobile apps are becoming more and more ubiquitous and you are missing out on an important revenue generating funnel if you don’t have an app for your ecommerce business. How about ordering your coffee at Starbucks without standing in the queue and collecting it as and when you leave for work? Sounds awesome, doesn’t it? Starbucks introduced its app in the USA and it has generated 12% rise in the overall revenue. The app also monitors the buying behavior of customers to enhance the user experience. You can choose to provide your customers with such apps and boost your sales.
3. Bespoke CRMs a favourite
The businesses of today are always in need of centralized systems for curating and analyzing customer information. Having a CRM that offers all the information including customer history, buying habits, language preference etc will work wonders for the retailers having an online presence. This way, the retailers will be able to find leads and retain them by providing exclusive buying experience to the customers. Business owners can also make the most out of the CRMs that send push notifications and alerts to create a loyal customer base.
4. Chatbots to be a rage
Wouldn’t it be fantastic to get what you want just by chatting on the messenger with an automated software? Chatbots are Al-led messenger services that are clever enough to make a conversation with you about the product you want by detecting your style of chatting. It also places orders for you after answering all your queries and gives ample amount of suggestions.
Although these Chatbots are in their developmental phase, they will eventually become a fad amongst the customers in future. Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana and Amazon’s Alexa are already playing a huge role in mapping the journey of their consumers. If you want to sustain in the marketplace, make sure you integrate one of these technologies in your store.
5. Enabling sales through Social Media
A recent study by Global Web Index revealed that there has been an increase in customers researching about products on social media platforms before they buy them. This study also says that almost 40% of consumers between the age of 16 to 24 use social media to know about different products.
Apple and Facebook will now allow the external apps to integrate themselves within their chat box and sell products from their pages. So if you are a business owner with the presence of your business page on Facebook, you are sure to benefit by selling your products through these forums.
6. Biometrics to enhance security
Ecommerce businesses will be integrating biometrics technology in order to improve the security on their sites. When Apple introduced fingerprint scan for unlocking their devices, they experienced a huge rise in their sales. However, this technology is not confined to fingerprints. By identifying voice patterns, iris patterns and facial detection, these websites will make each transaction exclusive and secure in nature. It is said that this year, more than 500 million people will be using phones that work on biometric technology.
7. Technology driven same day delivery
According to a recent research report indicated that 29% of consumers are ready to pay extra if they get delivery of products on the same day. Amazon began the trend of making deliveries on the same day through drones. Initially, these drones will have local drop off points so that the consumers can collect their ordered items from the definite locations. Brands like UberRush and Postmates are trying to walk on the path of Amazon by turning the dream of same day delivery into a reality.
There is no doubt that technology will continue to drive the growth of ecommerce industry and the consumers adoption of online shopping. But technology is just the enabler. The brands that, along with embracing technology, will also invest in understanding the modern day customer psychology will have a great 2017. So do follow the above trends and try to adopt as many of them as possible. But also do keep in mind that your customers are human being with irrational behavior patterns. So amidst all the glamor of technology don’t forget what your customers really want.
This post is part of our contributor series. It is written and published independently of TNW.