As technology continues to evolve, so does the way we shop. E-commerce is no exception, and we can expect to see a variety of trends in 2023 that will shape the way consumers shop and interact with brands online.
With more people turning to online shopping for convenience and cost savings, the industry is projected to grow exponentially over the next few years. As we look ahead to 2023, we’ve compiled the most essential e-commerce trends you should be aware of this year.
1. Omnichannel shopping experience
Omnichannel will continue to become increasingly important for e-commerce brands in 2023 as customers continue to demand seamless experiences across all channels, from physical stores to online, mobile, and social media. According to Shopify, 73% of shoppers turn to multiple channels before making a purchase.
Examples include personalized product recommendations, unified search across all channels, real-time inventory availability, and the ability to purchase items online and pick them up in-store. To optimize omnichannel strategies, brands will need to combine a variety of technologies and techniques, such as AI and automation, to create a unified experience that meets customer needs and preferences.
2. Mobile shopping
Mobile shopping, dubbed m-commerce, isn’t a new concept. However, the number of shoppers making purchases on mobile devices grows every year, making it a significant trend for brands to keep track of. By 2024, m-commerce is expected to reach nearly $4.5 trillion and will account for 69.9% of overall retail e-commerce sales.
To capitalize on this trend, businesses will need to make sure every part of their websites is optimized for mobile and that their checkout process is seamless. Additionally, businesses should focus on creating an engaging and personalized shopping experience on mobile to ensure customers have a positive experience.
3. Augmented reality and AI
As businesses strive to create more immersive and personalized shopping experiences for their customers, AI tools will be used to provide personalized customer experiences. Additionally, augmented reality will be used more and more by brands to enable customers to virtually view items.
There are many ways brands are currently using augmented reality. IKEA allows shoppers to see what furniture would look like in their homes and Sephora allows customers to shop for the right shade of makeup. This method of shopping is ideal for retailers selling clothing and accessories and can lead to more satisfied customers and increased sales.
4. Marketplace diversification
Many brands strive to sell their products on one of the biggest online retailers: Amazon. While this is a good way to drive more sales and reach a significantly larger audience, some brands are feeling the heat with the recent commission fee increase.
As a result, many brands are looking for ways to diversify their sales channels and are turning to other marketplaces and retailers. That’s not to say that Amazon isn’t still a good place to sell, but rather simultaneously selling on other marketplaces can help lower your overhead, find new customers, and remain competitive.
5. Social commerce
According to a report, 9 out of 10 people buy from brands they follow on social media. When it comes to social commerce, Gen Z is leading the way. In fact, 97% of Gen Zers say that social media is their top source when searching for shopping inspiration.
Many social channels offer social commerce capabilities, such as Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Pinterest, Twitter, and more. This leaves many options for brands to capitalize on by finding the channel that’s most relevant to their audience and working on optimizing it for sales in 2023.
6. Payment options
Having a seamless checkout experience isn’t only important for the mobile experience, but for the sales experience overall. In previous years, retailers have seen customers increasingly using diverse methods of payment to complete their purchases, and this trend is set to continue this year.
Aside from more traditional payment methods, like credit and debit cards, customers want other options, such as the ability to use digital wallets like PayPal or Google Wallet, vouchers, and paying with a buy now, pay later (BNPL) option like Klarna or AfterPay. As of 2022, there were 360 million BNPL users, and this number is set to double in the next couple of years.
7. Quick delivery
With the popularity of programs like Amazon Prime that offer same-day or next-day delivery, the majority of consumers are looking for brands that can offer quick delivery times. According to a study by FedEx, 70% of consumers said they’d be less likely to make a repeat purchase from a retailer if delivery was delayed without communication.
Of course, sometimes delivery delays are due to supply chain issues. While customers are aware of the supply chain challenges facing retailers, 60% of them still expect same-day, next-day, or two-day delivery.
8. Focus on your value
With an economic recession on the horizon for 2023, brands are unsure of how to navigate the uncertainty. As the cost of living increases and consumers look to reel in their spending, how might this affect individual brands and businesses? In truth, only time will tell how spending habits will change later this year, but brands can prepare themselves for this potential shift.
We’ll see brands focusing on their value first above everything else. This can manifest as differentiating themselves from competitors, strengthening customer service and loyalty programs, and reinforcing seamless online or in-store shopping experiences. Highlighting value will help brands counteract consumer hesitance to purchase goods.
9. Sustainable products and behavior
According to a survey, 66% of shoppers are looking to shop at eco-friendly brands, with 52% of them agreeing they’d pay more for sustainable items. This might mean using less packaging or eco-friendly packaging, offering recycling programs, or selling fair trade items.
In order for a brand to be considered truly sustainable, however, it’s not only its environmental impact that makes a difference. Sustainability encompasses environmental, social, and ethical practices, too. Companies are increasingly looking for ways to implement sustainable and ethical practices in all aspects of their business – from supply chain, to managing employees, and how products are made and packaged.
10. Responsive customer service
Just as consumers expect quick deliveries, they also expect responsive customer support. Chatbots have become more commonplace in order to provide instant support to certain customer inquiries when real agents aren’t available. While a quick response time is an important factor for businesses going into 2023, it isn’t the only aspect of customer service that matters.
Customers want flexible return policies and processes, as well as delivery communication and solutions when contacting support. According to a survey, 89% of customers would make a repeat purchase after a positive customer service experience, highlighting the importance of this trend in 2023 when customers are likely to be more prudent with their spending in light of a looming recession.
Get ahead of the trends with Cymbio
While there are many different strategies involved in preparing your business for each one of these trends, there are business tools that can help you simplify some of them. Cymbio is one of them.
Cymbio allows brands to automate, streamline, and organize retailer and marketplace operations in order to bring down costs and reduce resources used. With Cymbio, you can prepare your company for these emerging 2023 trends by:
Easily connecting your products to social platforms to reach new audiences and sell on social channels
- Boost your omnichannel strategy with intuitive automations such as syncing inventory across all sales platforms and putting order management tasks on auto-pilot
- Connect with new marketplaces and retailers in order to diversify your sales streams and grow your bottom line all without dramatically increasing your overhead
- Automate and speed up delivery tasks such as creating shipping labels and packing slips and triggering refunds when items are returned
- Improve your customer experience with automatic reports analyzing retailer and marketplace activity to better understand your customers’ shopping behavior
The earlier you adopt new practices to prepare for the emerging and growing trends of 2023, the more well-prepared your business will be during peak periods. Cymbio’s case studies show how diversifying your sales channels by focusing on growing into new marketplaces and social channels results in overall business growth. In 2023, this strategy can also help curb the impact of the potential economic downturn and better protect your business against its impacts.
Schedule a call today with a Cymbio expert to understand how our platform can help your business grow in the new year.
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