5 eCommerce predictions for 2022
The eCommerce industry changed rapidly because of the effects of Covid in 2020. Many eCommerce businesses were forced to think of new ways of doing business. For instance, when the lockdowns went into effect physical channels disappeared, and because of that, consumers (and businesses) needed to adapt to the digital channels which accelerated not only the digital transformation but the digital experience that consumers expect are getting more and more advanced.
In fact, more than 30% of B2B technology buyers already make their initial purchases through digital channels. So, how do you adapt to the changing market of eCommerce? Here are our five predictions on eCommerce trends for 2022.
Also don’t miss our other Predictions 2022:
→ Predictions 2022: Digital Marketing
→ Predictions 2022: Product Information Management (PIM)
→ Predictions 2022: Content Management
1. Voice-based search, voice-based shopping and voice-based ads
This is no surprise. Voice assistances, like Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home, have been on our eCommerce prediction list repeatedly, nonetheless, this year we are taking it to the next level. Voice search will no longer just be a trend, but an opportunity for eCommerce business owners to employ in a broader perspective. For instance, working with voice-search-optimization strategies to rank for keywords and phrases that perfectly match voice-search requests.
By 2022, the Global smart speaker market revenues grow to nearly 28 billion, representing continued rapid growth within the market. Additionally, in 2022 voice-based shopping is expected to reach a market value of 40 billion. And thus, voice-based ad revenues are bound to increase by 18% by the year 2022. We believe, it is pretty safe to assume voice-based activities need your attention.
2. PIM & eCommerce is key to delivering personalized products
Personalization is not a new concept. However, with more and more people getting specific in their demands, you do need to up your personalization game. Any eCommerce business, both B2B and B2C, is engaging with buyers who are looking for customized products and shopping experiences.
In 2022, we can expect personalization to turn into “hyper”-personalization since we are experiencing the transformation of the market to direct selling (D2C). Also, people don’t like to be targeted by a wide campaign but are more likely to buy a product if the advertised products and services are optimized to their needs. The businesses that fall short of new expectations of personalization risk having consumers leave their shop and buy from a competitor.
A way to deliver personalized product and customer experience is to combine Product Information Management (PIM) and eCommerce to complete and enrich each other. Combined, it delivers a more streamlined process, and you'll have your product data to drive product experience resulting in better customer experiences with increased bottom-line results.
3. Prepare for the future with Omnichannel selling
Yes, we live in an omnichannel world, and you must be on top of it. Actually, a massive 84.9% of customers won’t purchase an item until they’ve seen it multiple times.
In fact, nearly 47% of all online sources come from Amazon, eBay, and Etsy. 51% of units sold on Amazon derive from third-party sellers. Additionally, 37% of consumers use social media to research products and brands.
It is fair to say that omnichannel selling is peaking and will continue to grow moving into 2022. Which channels to include in your sales matrix is a choice you need to make. However, omnichannel selling is something you truly must pay attention to, because consumers are purchasing from different online sellers - like Amazon, eBay, and your social media marketplaces. To scale your eCommerce success and keep growing, you need to offer your customers different sources as one channel would just not suffice.
A true omnichannel approach must deliver a consistent brand experience everywhere you sell to meet your customers where they are and build relationships that exceed channels. Be aware that this includes optimizing your business to match the requirements of various channels and therefore comprehensive integration of your data and systems. Be happy that using Dynamicweb PIM feeds makes it easy to meet all requirements on 3rd party sites.
4. Diversity of payment methods
Customer satisfaction lies in the little things. Diversity of payment methods is one of them. It is the last step in the entire shopping process and the lack of preferred payment methods may result in a lost sale. Therefore, you must allow your customers to pay in the way they desire and keep things simple.
Did you know that more than 50% of all purchases will be made via a smartphone by 2025? Here is a hint: ApplePay and GooglePay look like excellent solutions for this scenario.
Not only can you expand which payment methods you offer, but you can also consider looking into where and when payments must be completed.
Except for payment by credit card, bank transfer, PayPal, and others, there is a rising trend to purchase in installments. For example, would you be willing to offer purchases for thirds? This means you can split the amount over three months. Today's you will find several services across Europe to support you on this. And who knows, it may benefit by gaining customers who could not afford the products in current payment method.
5. Augmented Reality (AR) and Artificial intelligence (AI) are not only for retailers
Customers expect brands to adopt the latest technologies to make their shopping experiences better. Today, people don’t want to guess what a bed they found online would look like in their bedroom or how the color, size and shape of a couch would look in the living room. Around 71% of consumers agree that they’ll shop more often from eCommerce brands that use AR. Besides, using AR will give you a competitive advantage since an estimate of over 120,000 stores will be using AR in 2022.
More and more organizations have adopted artificial intelligence (AI) to improve their workflows and processes. And eCommerce companies are no exception. Retailers were among the first to recognize the benefits of including AI in their tech stack. In fact, online sellers are predicted to spend $7.3 billion on AI by 2022, which is a significant rise compared with the approximately $2 billion spent in 2018.
The driving force behind this increase is to provide a personalized customer experience. Today, AI applications include customer service, sales, and marketing. However, areas such as predictions and pricing are also seen to benefit from AI use. Especially the benefits of AI to the sales process are very promising, which makes it is worth mentioning as an eCommerce trend to watch for in 2022.
Where does this leave us?
You might have noticed the common thread in these predictions - the end goal is to meet customers' rising expectations and make their shopping experience as smooth as possible.
Broadly speaking, all of these eCommerce trends for 2022 aim to enhance user experience in one way or another. But, how do you know which way(s) matches your target audience's demands? The best way to determine if something will work for your business is to ask your customers.