Monitoring eCommerce trends shouldn’t just be a hobby. Each trend needs to be analyzed and adopted in due course if it’s truly going to drive your eCommerce brand forward — otherwise, you run the serious risk of falling drastically behind your competition.
As we move into 2020, here are 10 eCommerce trends to keep tabs on in 2020 and beyond.
eCommerce trends for 2020
#1. The rise of the second-hand market aka “re-commerce”
Call it second-hand eCommerce, re-commerce, or by any other name, the online market for used products has never been bigger.
According to data collected by Thredup, the second-hand market is primed to explode in the years to come:
A number of factors play into this increasing trend, including:
- An increased focus on sustainability
- The ability to attain sought-after products for less money
- The need to keep ahead of trends in fashion and other industries
As we move into 2020, it’s clear that the market for used goods is still alive and well. From niche sites like Poshmark to more general platforms like Facebook Marketplace, the demand for second-hand goods is spread far and wide.
#2. Fulfillment options expand
Of the many reasons online consumers give for abandoning their cart, some of the most common excuses revolve around problems with fulfillment.
More specifically, we’re talking about:
- Shipping costs
- Lengthy shipping times
- Lack of delivery options
Of course, it’s impossible to please everyone in this regard—and do so profitably.
For eCommerce companies with brick-and-mortar locations, there’s a simple solution.
#3. PWA for eCommerce becomes expected
A progressive web app is a mobile website that has the look and feel of a native mobile app.
While websites like Twitter and Gmail have used PWA technology for a while now, we’re starting to see it bleed over into many popular eCommerce websites, as well.
Aliexpress, for example, has pioneered the use of PWAs in eCommerce to great success.
#4. eCommerce-first companies go brick-and-mortar
Deirdre O’Donoghue of G2 believes that “2020 will be the year in which eCommerce business lean into the experiential brick-and-mortar space.”
While the traditional approach to brick-and-mortar retail continues to decline in effectiveness, brick-and-mortar retail overall is currently experiencing a renaissance of sorts. In some cases—as with Toys R Us and GameStop—companies are even deciding to close up shop and completely reinvent their brick-and-mortar experience.
The key reason for this is that the consumer no longer needs to visit a brick-and-mortar location to make a purchase; they can just do it online. That being the case, the modern consumer, when visiting a brick-and-mortar store, is looking for much more out of the experience.
#5. Dynamic pricing drives optimal sales and profit
You probably know that optimizing your product prices isn’t as simple as undercutting the competition.
In fact, going this route will only start a “race to the bottom,” which will ultimately devalue your products, overall.
The better course of action, as Yigit Kocak of Prisync explains, is to price your products according to context:
#6. Adopting the fast-fashion mindset
There’s no denying that the fast-fashion eCommerce industry has absolutely exploded in recent years.
In fact, a report by McKinsey&Company forecasted that the industry would grow anywhere from 3.5-4.5% throughout 2019.
As Econsultancy points out, there are four key reasons fast-fashion companies like Zara and H&M have experienced such growth in recent years:
- Speed and agility (in terms of product development and order fulfillment)
- Influencer endorsements
- Social sales (which we’ll discuss later)
In taking advantage of these factors and opportunities, fast-fashion companies have begun experiencing massive success both on- and offline.
#7. Providing a multi-platform journey with platform-specific messaging
2020 for Ecommerce is all about omnipresence. The customer journey is now far from linear; it’s not only multi-device but multiplatform. Your prospects will bounce from Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat to email, FB Messenger, back to SMS…and so on. 2020 will be all about achieving multi-channel efficiency and crafting platform-specific messages to be at the right place, at the right time, with the right action driving hook.
#8. Purposeful content repurposing
The modern consumer’s demand for high-quality content has never been higher.
For the modern eCommerce companies, this, in turn, means you’ll need to crank out more high-quality content than ever before. Of course, this is much easier said than done; high-quality content isn’t just something you can whip up with the flick of a switch.
In lieu of trying (and likely failing) to grind out brand new content day in, day out, many eCommerce companies have discovered the true value of repurposing content.
#9. The explosion of social commerce
Social commerce—that is, the process of making purchases directly on social media platforms—has been steadily gaining ground over the past few years.
This trend will absolutely continue onwards as we move into 2020.
Leading the charge in the Western eCommerce world are platforms like Instagram Shopping, as well as the newly-released Checkout on Instagram.
#10. The subscription service bandwagon rolls on
A sure bet heading into 2020 is that the demand (and prevalence) of subscription-based services is bound to increase.
And this just makes sense — for both the customer and the company.
On the customer’s end, subscription services provide a regularly-delivered, always-as-expected experience through every engagement. Depending on the type of service provided, the value to the customer comes in the form of things like personalization, convenience, and monetary savings.
Companies that can regularly deliver this value, of course, will reap massive rewards.
What’s more, running a subscription service can inherently save you time, money, and other resources — in a few different ways:
- More reliable forecasting leads to better inventory management
- Repeated, scheduled purchases allow for streamlined transactions
- Focus on retaining high-quality customers, not acquiring mass amounts of one-off consumers
With all this in mind, there’s little doubt that more and more eCommerce brands will hop on the subscription bandwagon in 2020.