Merchants across the globe are navigating an uncertain economy. As they head out of a pandemic, we look to the ecommerce trends of 2023. They must continuously adapt to various forces to meet shopper demands and drive conversions by applying new technologies and methods. But opportunity still exists for online merchants. Online shopping exploded into a more than $5 trillion market during the pandemic. From a historical perspective, online shopping has gone from explosive growth to “mere” growth, as many consumers still spend more online every year.
E-commerce merchants that know how to target demographic desires and evolve quickly will manage the challenges this year and beyond. Here’s a look at six e-commerce trends for 2023:
Adjusting to the Hybrid Model of Commerce
The hybrid model of integrating physical and digital worlds is emerging as the retail industry’s next phase to meet the service and convenience that shoppers demand. E-commerce merchants deciding to expand into a physical presence should consider the following factors:
- do their products have compelling physical properties;
- can they leverage marketplace partners’ physical locations; and
- can they expand warehouse space.
Motivated by Gen Z, the e-commerce industry will play a bigger role in sustainability and reducing our climate footprint. New challenges and trends will continuously test merchants’ resilience and motivate them to adapt to new norms to meet the demands of the growing digital economy. Creating a road map toward a sustainable business may soon be compulsory, so getting ahead of the curve is a positive move. Investing in green commerce practices leads to a long-term payback in brand image, value and customer loyalty for years to come.
Differentiating Through Personalization
Consumers enjoy how search results can personalize suggestions based on available data. Optimized personalization is indispensable for any e-commerce brand that aims to stand out. Technologies such as artificial intelligence can help merchants analyze search history or past purchases and access previous interactions with products or brands on social media. Not only does personalization enhance the user experience, but it can also boost conversion.
Using Inventory-Based Merchandising to Counter Supply Chain Disruptions
Experts predict that supply chain problems will continue into 2023. Retailers will need to double down on what they can control and turn to merchandisers who can help improve the customer experience by offering location-based filtering. Vendors with local stores for delivery and supply chains and merchants’ vertically integrated locally will have an edge in the new year because they will have more control over delivery timelines.
Expanding Into Owned Channels as Media Advertising Becomes Expensive and Less Targeted
Merchants expand into channels they control as media advertising becomes more expensive and much less targeted. The days of creating lookalike audiences on Facebook and pouring money with a good return on advertising spend (ROAS) are over. Merchants are investing in channels that they already own: native mobile app, merchandising and optimization of their online store, email and SMS marketing.
Taking a Pause From the Metaverse
The metaverse, used as a catch-all phrase for technologies involving a blend of virtual reality, augmented reality, digital avatars and blockchain, hasn’t taken off. Meta, the company formerly known as Facebook, the poster child for the metaverse, is in trouble. It’s either the vision, execution or both. But what’s certain is that our avatars aren’t doing e-commerce anytime soon.
This post was originally featured on Total Retail.com.