It’s 2016 already! The New Year’s Eve party is over and it’s time to talk business. If one of your New Year’s resolutions is to improve your online store’s performance, you can’t ignore the upcoming e-commerce trends. Which of 2015’s strategies will continue to thrive and which new innovations will gain recognition in the new year? Let’s find out:
The Top E-Commerce Trends of 2016
1. Personalization Will Get Even More Personalized
Personalization in the form of e-mail campaigns and the automatic display of related products is something we are already getting used to. This e-commerce trend will reach new dimensions this year. It’s no wonder then that, according to Econsultancy, web personalization causes, on average, a 19% increase in sales. In 2016 online shoppers are likely to see more and more customized landing pages that exactly suit their needs. The same is true about discounts and coupons, which will be more and more targeted at specific interests of particular customers.
2. Deliveries Will Fall From the Sky Overnight
For e-commerce, last year was a time of massive delivery improvements. In 2015, more than half of online retailers in the UK offered standard free deliveries.1 While this number is expected to grow, the time needed for the product to reach the customer will continue to shrink. Amazon’s one-day delivery is already on, putting the pressure on other e-commerce retailers to shorten their delivery times. The growth of these two e-commerce trends is not all that 2016 will offer in terms of shipping. Crowdsourced delivery companies, with Posmates and Deliv in the lead, are gradually acquiring a stronger position in the market. Even online shopping giants such as Walmart are considering crowdsourcing as a delivery method. And though it still sounds a bit like si-fi, the Amazon Prime Air concept has actually been put to test. Actually, settling in of this particular trend is rather daubtful due to the high costs, however, it can’t be excluded that drone delivery will become a standard procedure some day.
3. Consumers Will Only Be Content with Good Content
A few years ago, smaller online retailers’ blogs were few and far between. This has already begun to change and blogging is slowly becoming one of the main e-commerce trends. More and more online store owners are deciding to experience first-hand what Hubspot mentions: that companies who blog receive 97% more links to their website. While in the past, blogging was viewed mainly as an easy way to improve SEO, 2016 will see a growing emphasis on the content. Random posts artificially overcrowded with keywords, links and adverts sink into oblivion. What matters now is informative, useful and entertaining content that’s useful not only for SEO, but for consumers.
4. Demo Videos Will Demonstrate Their Power
A few years ago, product videos in online shops were seen as a fancy addition. There’re not anymore. According to Multichannel Merchant, 71% of consumers consider product video to be the best way to explain product features, thus more and more online shoppers expect to see a product demo before they purchase. The realization of this fact has made online shopping giants like Walmart or Zappos introduce product videos onto their product pages. Smaller retailers have already started to follow this trend and in 2016, surely more of them will. It’s not very surprising, taking into account the benefits product videos offer for e-commerce sites and in some outstanding cases cause a 425% increase in conversion rate. So if you plan to make your shop truly successful, product videos are one of those e-commerce trends you should definitely focus on this year.
5. Facebook Will Be the Face of Advertising
Social media buttons appearing on product pages were already a standard feature in 2015. However, giving customers the opportunity to share their favorite products isn’t the only benefit social media gives online retailers. They’re already starting to realize the advertising possibilities that social media offers. Facebook is a definite leader in this area, being responsible for 60% of social media traffic that is driven to retail sites.2 It’s no wonder that efficient demographic and location targeting makes it very easy to advertise products and offer customized discounts to selected consumers. And since this platform is constantly improving its business oriented capabilities, Facebook advertising is definitely one of the e-commerce trends to watch out for in 2016 and in upcoming years.