IN THE past two years, we have seen e-commerce change and grow to meet the demands of the new Covid-19 world. As we celebrate a New Year, it is vital for all online sellers to look ahead and plan for what is to come.
According to e-commerce experts Optiseller, there are five new e-commerce trends that will affect all online sellers in 2022. Optiseller experts say it doesn’t matter what platform or marketplace you sell on, these trends can and will affect every aspect of selling online in the year ahead.
1 – Online sales are continuing to increase
It’s no surprise that the first trend we look at is that online sales are continuing to increase at a rapid rate. According to a survey conducted by Credit Karma, a personal finance start-up, about 70% of Brits say buying online has become their preferred shopping method, up from less than half prior to the coronavirus pandemic.
With the decline of the high street, more and more people are shopping from the comfort of their own homes. The global research from Episerver, which surveyed more than 4,500 shoppers, found that 38% of UK consumers buy online at least once a week, more than any other region surveyed. Closely followed by 26% in the US and 21% in Australia.
Richard Falconer, COO at Optiseller, explains: “These figures are promising and put into context the opportunities that are out there for online sellers. However, sellers need to stand out from their competition as marketplaces are only going to become even more competitive. eBay alone has identified that there were over 100,000 new ‘pandemic start-ups’ formed in 2020 during the height of the UK lockdown. These new businesses have sold over 72 million items across listings to the 29 million eBay shoppers who use the platform every day. Highlighting the need for all sellers to consider their listings, promotions and positioning to stay ahead of the competition.
2 – Mobile shopping is growing rapidly
If your site isn’t optimised for mobile transactions, you need to step into the 21st century now or you’re going to lose out. By the end of 2021 mobile transitions will make 72.9% of the total worldwide e-commerce transition (Statista).
Commonly known as m-commerce, mobile commerce is the process of buying and selling products or services through a mobile, tablet or another hand-held device. And with today’s society being mobile obsessed there has never been a better time to be mobile-friendly. According to Ofcom people in the UK check their mobiles every 12 minutes daily, just think of all the traffic and potential customers you could miss out on.
Falconer comments: “Mobile shopping has the very real potential to become the top channel for online purchasing and could change consumer shopping habits forever. According to Insider Intelligence mobile will inch closer to becoming consumers’ preferred channel for online shopping within the next five years. Get ahead of the game and set yourself up for success by being mobile-friendly.”
3 – Social media impacts consumer buying decisions more than ever before
Similar to m-commerce, with the growth of social media platforms and the influence culture of today’s society, social media is pivotal in the consumer buyer journey. According to GlobalWebIndex, 71% are more likely to purchase products and services based on social media referral alone.
The Deloitte report also noted that consumers who use social media during their shopping process are four times more likely to spend more on purchases than those who do not. This huge figure really hits home how important it is to stay ahead of the trends to ensure that you’re reaching your customers and ultimately selling more online.
“You might not think that your products would do well on social media, but the Deloitte report provided some insight into which product categories work best on social media. According to their data, 56% of consumers buying baby products are influenced by social media, compared to 40% for home furnishings, 33% for health and wellness and 32% for car parts and accessories.”
4 – Environmental factors that influence e-commerce
With COP-26 recently held in Glasgow, the Earth’s future is truly at the forefront of the world’s minds. It’s no surprise that a research report by PFS and LiveArea, ‘Selling Sustainability: Adapting to the New Conscious Consumer’, found that consumer attention in the UK and Ireland have turned to the sustainability of the buying cycle and the environmental impact associated with their changing shopping habits.
For many consumers, the temporary closure of physical shops has provided the opportunity to reassess and re-evaluate their shopping habits. More than 37% of shoppers now say that they are more conscious of the environmental impact their online shopping habits have than before the pandemic. Meanwhile, nearly 73% of consumers expect online retailers and brands to use recyclable packaging or minimise their use of packaging. And according to a study by Deloitte, nearly 1 in 3 customers claim to have stopped purchasing certain products because they had ethical or sustainability-related concerns about them.
These findings really hit home how important sustainably is to consumers and how every seller should consider their environmental impact whether that is choosing recycled packaging or using a low emission courier.
5 – Supporting local on the up
The pandemic saw nearly 50 chain shops close per day in the first half of the year (2021) on the British high streets, retail parks and shopping centres, research shows. This scary reality has promoted the UK to shop local.
According to Shopify, 57% of consumers expressed a willingness to purchase from new and independent businesses for the first time. Whether you are new to selling on-line or have been selling on-line for years using multiple marketplaces, this gives you the confidence to know that if you are an independent business that consumers will purchase from. Gone are the days of people only purchasing from big brands that are well known, everyone has a chance to sell on-line in today’s market.
Falconer adds: “To round up, it’s clear that the future of e-commerce for 2022 is looking bright with lots of opportunities out there for new and experienced sellers. The trick is to stay ahead of the trends, differentiate from the competition and ultimately sell more on-line.
“Whether you already sell on eBay or you are thinking of expanding your marketplaces to eBay, there has never been a better time to sell on-line. But to succeed, sellers need to put data at the centre of their business operation and keep up with the new e-commerce trends. As an e-commerce data platform with over 50,000 users in 160 countries, Optiseller help sellers control, manage and monitor their performance as well as grow sales.”