10 of the Most Important E-Commerce Trends You Need to Know in 2022: A Helpful Guide

by Aaron | Marketing

The year 2021 brought many developments and challenges for retailers. The industry experienced advancements in technology, while simultaneously being hit with shipping and supply chain issues. The COVID-19 lockdowns forced retailers to become more innovative to reach their customers. Many succeeded in doing this through the optimization of their e-commerce strategies and campaigns.

Not too long ago, many e-commerce websites were optimized only for desktops, but that is no longer the case. As smartphone shopping behaviors continue to increase, retailers that haven’t optimized their websites for mobile are harming their businesses. In the retail industry, keeping up with the times — and the competition — is vital.

Now that mobile commerce, or m-commerce, dominates the shopping experience, mobile website optimization is most assuredly a given. So, what are the next big developments in the field of e-commerce? Please continue reading to discover the 10 most important e-commerce trends for 2022.

  1. D2C or Direct-to-Consumer Sales

In 2020, D2C e-commerce sales reached $111.5 billion in the U.S. and sales are predicted to continue growing at a rapid pace.

Increasingly, businesses are skipping the resellers and intermediaries and selling directly to the consumer. Many brands have opened their own online stores instead of selling through Amazon, Walmart or other large trading platforms. Why has this become so popular? D2C businesses generally realize greater profits while consumers enjoy the lower prices.

  1. One-Click Ordering on Mobile Devices

60% of the U.S. population buys via mobile devices. In 2024, approximately 187.5 million Americans are expected to purchase at least once from a web browser or app on their mobile device.

One-click ordering allows shoppers to purchase on a site without having to reenter their billing and shipping information. While the ability to buy using saved information has been common on mobile apps for a while, doing so on mobile websites is currently trending. A faster payment process means fewer abandoned shopping carts and increased revenue.

  1. Voice Searching and Shopping

During 2020, approximately 7% of connected device owners in the U.S. (or 20 million American consumers) made a purchase via a voice-activated device. Since then, the number of consumers shopping in this way has nearly doubled.

Product searches and purchases made using a device’s voice-enabled assistant are growing steadily. Voice assistants can not only search, but they can also add items to the cart, recommend alternative items and more. The ability to schedule an appointment or request customer service is becoming more readily available and is likely to grow in 2022 and beyond.

  1. Increased Personalization

52% of customers expect offers to be personalized (up from 49% in 2019) while 66% want businesses to understand what they need and want.

Personalization can increase sales and revenue by cross-selling or upselling. Websites that use artificial intelligence (AI) to recommend relevant products based on the user’s past browsing or shopping history are rewarded with increased revenue. However, when offers are irrelevant, the user either purchases only the item searched for or, in the worst case, he or she leaves the site without buying and may not return.

  1. Conversational E-Commerce

42% of retailers sell via text or chat or have plans to do so, and 34% of spas and salons currently allow customers to schedule appointments via text or chat.

Customers like the ability to use chat or text to purchase products and services or get immediate support in real time, and they are likely to remain loyal to a business that offers this option. Conversational e-commerce saves time and provides a personalized element to shopping — whether the customer is talking to a live person or a chatbot. Enhancing the online experience often encourages consumers to spend more, and isn’t that what you want?

  1. Augmented Reality (AR)

In response to a 2019 Google consumer survey, 66% of respondents said they were interested in using AR when shopping online. 101.6 million consumers are expected to use AR at least once per month in 2022.

Consumers use AR to visualize how a rug or piece of furniture fits into their homes or how clothing, eyeglasses or makeup products look on them. Augmented reality increases customers’ confidence in their online purchases, and businesses that use AR experience fewer returns and increased sales and revenue.

  1. Livestream Commerce

Livestream e-commerce was predicted to generate $11 billion in the U.S. in 2021, and by 2024, revenue from live online shopping is expected to reach $35 billion. 35% of retail managers said they planned to implement livestream shopping in 2022.

During livestream selling, a product is highlighted or demonstrated in an online video, usually through a social media platform. Consumers and the company rep can interact in real time through a chatbox, and customers can purchase products directly. With its ability to ask questions and interact with a salesperson in real time, the livestream shopping experience closely mimics in-person shopping.

  1. Convenient Delivery

64% of online shoppers prefer delivery to in-store or curbside pickup. 38% of retailers provide same-day delivery, and 38% plan to continue offering this option after the pandemic ends.

Fast, convenient home delivery continues to trend. In fact, quick delivery service is so important to consumers that businesses plan to meet their expectations even in light of today’s supply chain delays. Some retailers have partnered with delivery service companies to meet the growing demand for flexible, same-day delivery options. This trend shows no signs of stopping.

  1. Social Commerce

73% of businesses currently engage in social commerce and 79% expect to do so within three years. The social commerce industry in the U.S. is predicted to reach nearly $79.6 billion by 2025.

To no one’s surprise, young adult consumers are driving this trend. After learning about brands and products on social media brand pages, they purchase those they like. Providing an opportunity for shoppers to purchase directly on social media makes shopping easy for the customer while the retailer experiences increased sales and fewer abandoned carts.

  1. Sustainability

In 2020, 45% of consumers worldwide said they were looking for sustainable or environmentally responsible brands.

Regardless of world leaders’ commitments to the environment, sustainability matters to consumers. That’s why businesses are beginning to pay attention to cutting the amount of plastic in their products and packaging, increasing recycling and providing more detailed product descriptions to reduce waste-generating returns. Prognosticators expect that the eco-conscious trend will accelerate in 2022 and beyond, requiring e-commerce brands to join the movement to stay competitive.

Conclusion

Follow these trends as 2022 unfolds to help boost your e-commerce business. If you don’t have an e-commerce website, but are planning on building one, turn to the WooCommerce platform. We can help you get started with some powerful tips for optimizing your website.

As the year progresses, other trends may emerge, so be sure to keep an eye on industry news and developments in technology and, perhaps most important of all, watch what your competitors are doing. Be open to evaluating your marketing strategy mid-year so you can reallocate resources to create a better experience for your customers and enjoy a more profitable year.


AUTHOR BIO:

Aaron Wittersheim is Chief Operating Officer at Straight North, an Internet marketing agency. He has helped startups, middle-market firms and Fortune 500 companies improve organizational structure and grow through his expertise in process conception, task automation and internal project management.

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