Consumers are increasingly buying goods and services online, so many retailers are developing new digital sales channels or even switching to online shopping altogether. E-commerce is a constantly growing and a changing sector, with new trends and opportunities emerging each year that can help business grow and outperform competitors.
Learn about the latest e-commerce and digital marketing technologies at the business technology exhibition and conference RIGA COMM 2021 to be held at Ķīpsala International Exhibition Centre this autumn, October 14-15. In this article, we have compiled information on technologies that can already improve online sales.
Mobile shopping takes over e-commerce
As consumer confidence in online shopping increases, they feel more comfortable and more often do shopping on their mobile devices. By the end of 2021, mobile devices are projected to account for almost 73% of total e-commerce sales, so online retailers need to focus on improving the customer experience on mobile devices.
In order to ensure faster loading of your website and to allow customers to view the pages they have previously browsed without the Internet, you need to create a Progressive Web Application (PWA). Be sure to check your mobile site’s suitability for mobile devices manually – is it easy to navigate, can products be easily viewed on a mobile phone, and whether you can zoom in images. A simple payment process and an understandable procedure for receiving and returning products for physically delivered goods are also very important!
Smart speakers are becoming more common at home, and people are increasingly using virtual assistants on their mobile phones for everyday activities – from waking up and controlling calendar events to finding the nearest cafe and buying products online. Moreover, Google and Amazon, as well as Apple and Alibaba, add regional languages to their virtual accessories to make the technology even easier to use. As the number of voice purchases increases, it becomes important for any online merchant to optimize their store for voice searching.
To increase your chances of popping up in a voice search results, add speech recognition to your website and mobile app to make purchasing your products with voice commands easy. An effective way to leverage the natural flow from voice searching is to include answers to frequently asked questions about a product or service on the Internet site. By attracting, engaging, and offering something valuable to potential customers, they will get into your marketing funnel and want to buy a product or service later.
Personalized recommendations and a virtual try-on experience
Artificial intelligence already works as an online shop assistant offering customers personalized recommendations based on their history of previous purchases, website usage habits, and showing products that a consumer is likely to want to buy. Unlike physical stores, online shoppers cannot try-on or physically test the product they plan to buy. Nevertheless, the augmented reality helps to remove this barrier by allowing customers to see how the product in question would look on them even before purchasing it.
With the introduction of artificial intelligence and augmented reality solutions, an e-shop can expect increase in the number and volume of purchases, as well as a reduction in return cases.
New payment options
One of the main reasons why customers make or do not make a purchase is the available payment options. If a payment method is not convenient for customers, they choose to make a purchase elsewhere. In addition to the possibility of debit and credit card payments, some e-commerce companies also accept digital payments with Google Pay, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay or PayPal. Rumour has it that we can expect Yandex Pay soon. More and more e-commerce companies are expected to start accepting cryptocurrency payments in 2021 as well, as they, especially “Bitcoin”, offer a lot of advantages to online storeowners, such as low transaction fees and no reverse transactions.
Data analytics to become more detailed
In the world of e-commerce, customer data will continue to grow in value. Many brands are currently focusing on basic metrics such as clicks and a conversion rate. By 2021, however, many will discover the extensive data capabilities and the analysis will become even more detailed. Segmentation will include not only the separation of first purchases from loyal customers. It will pay more attention to how customers respond to e-commerce offerings, allowing them to personalize campaigns at a new level.
Customers prefer trading platforms
Companies, that did not even have their own websites before 2020, are online now. However, consumer behaviour is still changing in favour of convenience. Shoppers have realized that shopping on a single trading platform is easier and more convenient than shopping in several e-shops. Moreover, customers have grown accustomed to fast delivery and free return of goods provided by big trading platforms like Amazon and Walmart, and they expect the same from regional and local e-shops as well.
When a brand is new or less recognizable, it is beneficial to start trading on the leading trading platforms that provide audience flow and customer service. However, care must be taken not to rely solely on these outlets – when selling products on sites like Amazon, the seller does not own customer data and that can curb brand growth. Attracting visitors to the brand’s online site at the same time is the best solution.
Learn about the latest business development technology, tools and techniques at the annual business and IT industry event RIGA COMM, October 14–15, where developers and suppliers of enterprise resource management, document management, HRM and security systems, suppliers of cloud services, internet and digital marketing services, web solutions and mobile application developers, and ICT product manufacturers offer ready-to-use and tailored solutions for companies in different industries and of different sizes, municipal authorities and organisations to facilitate efficient operation. An extensive conference programme will complement the technology exhibition.
RIGA COMM is held by the International Exhibition Company BT 1 in cooperation with Intelligent Machines Riga, Riga TechGirls, SmartHR Latvija, Latvian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mailigen, Finance Latvia Association and other partners.