29 Nov

The Future of E-Commerce: Here’s What You Can Expect

Posted by John Brandwagt

E-commerce is evolving. Experts predict e-commerce in Canada will account for ten percent of sales by 2020. Cheap connectivity, better shopping experiences, lower prices, convenience, and much more are influencing consumers’ buying habits.

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As more people shop online, however, e-commerce is growing beyond the now-traditional online shop. Here are some of the trends you can expect to see in the future of e-commerce.

Same-Day Delivery

People still have to wait for shipping to receive physical items they buy online. Depending on where you shop, this could take a couple of days or a couple of weeks. Some companies are now experimenting with same-day delivery. While there are still bugs to be worked out, the model could revolutionize online shopping.

Same-day delivery will put e-commerce on par with shopping in bricks-and-mortar stores, bringing the experience to a new level of convenience.

Compelling Content

In the past, few consumers looked for much more in an online shop than whether or not the product they wanted was available. They may have made sure the price was displayed in their home currency. They might have double-checked delivery times and shipping estimates.

Today’s consumers want more out of their shopping experience. It’s no longer enough to provide a slick online interface for your customers to make their purchases. More and more, you need videos, infographics, and blog posts to provide consumers with the information they want and need to make an informed purchase.

E-commerce is coming closer to marketing as a result. The two channels are beginning to merge. This trend will influence how marketing campaigns are carried out and how e-commerce systems are designed and handled.

Focus on the Experience

Today’s consumers also want to be wowed by their shopping experience. If they have trouble checking out, they’re likely to abandon their carts and go elsewhere. This holds true even if you have the products they want, the best prices, or a great deal on shipping.

Your e-commerce system has to provide the consumer with an enjoyable experience. Design plays a key role in this. Security is also a factor as you need to keep your customers’ information safe while still making it easy to purchase from you.

Getting Social

Social media is now ingrained in today’s society. Most people use at least one social media platform while many use multiple platforms. Social influencer marketing is becoming more popular as a result.

E-commerce hasn’t been much affected by social media so far. Conversion rates from social media marketing and sales campaigns are low, leading some marketers to abandon them altogether.

It’s becoming more apparent social is the way of the future. There’s an old adage that’s still true in the age of social media: Go where your customers are. If everyone’s using Instagram, you need to be there.

The difference, which is key for companies involved in e-commerce, is to recognize the value social media brings. Conversion rates may not be great but social media provides an opportunity to truly connect and build relationships with existing customers and potential new customers. E-commerce retailers can’t afford to miss that chance.

New Yardsticks

Few people will deny the importance of metrics for e-commerce. Metrics help you keep track of successes and failures. They can point to what’s working and what needs improvement.

One particular challenge for e-commerce has been the tendency of consumers to move between devices before becoming customers. People may visit your store on their phones, then switch to their desktops. They visit later on their tablets as well.

Tracking an individual consumer across all the devices they use is possible. This information will have important insights for the future of e-commerce as it gives glimpses into customers’ usage.

E-commerce will continue to evolve. Trends may come and go but e-commerce is here to stay, no matter what shape it takes.


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Topics: IT Trends

John Brandwagt

John is a Practice Leader at Inteqna. He’s been working in IT Search in Calgary since 1997. He works best with selective job seekers—those who excel at what they do and enjoy their current jobs. Since they don’t have time to look for themselves, he helps them find their dream jobs. From a client perspective, he helps organizations find the talent that will propel their business. John is involved in several of Calgary’s technical user groups and has held board roles in non-profit groups. He is a single dad of four boys who try to beat him at every physical activity from hiking to rugby.

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