The main eCommerce trends of 2021 include social commerce, local inventory advertising, retargeting, vertical and niche marketplaces.
This year's word to watch for is “omnichannel” and the role of data quality is essential to optimize the customer experience both online and in-store.
There are currently 5 trends of eCommerce of 2021 which are as follows.
1. Content: There is a need to support the product proposition, not only with cold data but by also developing a storytelling component.
This means integrating into the product offer a descriptive component made up of text, interactive videos and, increasingly, voice content.
Rich content helps to give a more detailed perception of the product, making it better known to the customer and contextualizing it within a certain purchasing experience.
The certainty of the purchase is linked to the fact that the conditions of return in online purchases are not always optimal.
The consumer wants to ensure that the product they purchased is what they want, so they do not have to return it and perhaps pay extra for doing so.
Adobe’s latest brand content survey highlights the fact that consumers looking for information about a brand do so through different sources at the same time.
Consumers spend 48 per cent of their time on the company’s website, 40 per cent in the physical store, 38 per cent on online comparisons and review sites, 22 per cent on social media, and 19 per cent on video platforms. The landscape, therefore, is quite varied.
The ability to monitor channels with a view not only of completeness of information but also of completeness of content are elements that brands will have to work on in the future.
2. Social commerce: Social media is a very powerful marketing tool, and, for some time now, brands have understood the potential of these touchpoints as an additional sales channel.
Although Facebook and Instagram have not yet integrated the ability to finalize purchases directly into their platforms, the path has been laid out. Instagram, for example, has recently extended its one-click functionality to shopping in reels, the short videos lasting up to 15 seconds that are very popular among Generation Z users.
TikTok, on the other hand, has sharpened its tools in this sector, thanks to its partnership with Shopify that integrates the technological elements that encourage impulse purchases: links in bio, fast checkout and integration with social payment tools. “Social [media] is being used more and more relevantly, not only as a platform to search for information but as part of an integrated purchasing process,” said Federico Vittadello. “In the U.S., 35 per cent of users between ages 25 and 34 already buy through social and 25 per cent have already used the ‘shop now’ features.”
3. AI & analytics: The option to track customers during their purchase path in real-time, through machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies, ensures an increasingly effective personalization of the ad.
The analysis of the huge amount of information these touchpoints produce, implemented through mathematical algorithms, allows marketers to operate toward the greatest efficiency.
This data helps in identifying and anticipating sales trends in different geographies and targeting the brand’s marketing messages.
4. Retargeting: The conversion path is almost never linear. More often it is a highly varied and heterogeneous path, influenced both by the stage of the funnel where the brand intercepts the user and by the different ways the user experiences the advertising message.
Retargeting effectiveness lies in the brand’s ability to intercept the needs of a user who has already interacted with the company, through one or more contact points, in various moments preceding the actual purchase. “The ability to organize the channels in a synergistic way ensures the most effective marketing actions, with a conversion around 70 per cent higher for retargeted users compared to those who are not,” said Vittadello.
5. Local Inventory Ads: Locally available product listings use digital channels to target the potential customers nearby.
Local Inventory Ad campaigns include the availability of a product in a given store and the location of a user near that store.
Local Inventory Ads offer an excellent possibility of conversion, as they are created on the basis of explicit user behavior. In the past, a user searched online for a specific product, or using implicit behavior, because they, at that moment, are in the catchment area of the store and the product could actually be of interest to them.