The huge rise in ecommerce and mobile commerce (mcommerce) has made it essential for any business to have an online presence. From small businesses to large enterprises, in any vertical, online stores are a must-have to sell products and services online. With the advancement of technology, consumers now prefer to shop via smartphones, tablets, iPhones and iPads because of new sophisticated mobile apps that enable them easy online shopping experience.
Prepare yourself for 2016 with these top ecommerce trends and predictions:
Data Driven Ecommerce Marketing Strategy:
Data-driven marketing encompasses marketing decisions and actions based on consumer behavior. The main aim of data-driven marketing is to engage customers more effectively. From small companies to large corporations, data-driven marketing helps to target demographic and yield better ROI results than before. Some of the important data driven marketing features include targeting and segmenting capabilities, integration and collaboration capabilities, accurate insights, visual and graphic options and customizable features.
There are many successful data-driven marketing companies including Google, Apple, Amazon, Subway and Microsoft. Analyze their internet marketing strategies and take help from an expert to implement same techniques.
In 2016, internet marketing companies will improve their marketing approach to analyze consumer behavior in a better way. They will be more interested in customer likes and dislikes. MyBuys study shows that 48% of consumers spend more when experience is personalized, data analytics will be key to increasing sales and customer loyalty.
You should focus on contextual data rather than user experience. You can get this data from email engagement and response, customer service logs, mobile usage, campaign referrals, social media interactions, geo location, in-store behavior and more. The new ecommerce platforms and mobile apps will allow retailers to personalize their products or services to cater the consumers’ preference and allow them to reflect their style. E.g. NIKEiD service of Nike allows customers to personalize their products in terms of size, color, design and patterns.
Customer Loyalty Program – Boost Retention:
Getting a new customer can cost five times as much as keeping an existing one, so companies need to pay more attention to retention as they do to acquisition. This can be achieved by improving your customer service. In fact retention is cheaper than acquisition. You need to meet customer demands, offer discounts, free shipping, fast delivery options, offer relevant products to customers as per their buying history, free registration, brand awareness, community building, delivery tracking options and more. E.g. Zappos assures delivery within five business days but the majority of orders are shipped overnight. Also, Amazon’s one click secure payment option is the main reason behind its online success.
Social Media Ecommerce:
Social media is an important platform to gain trust and get loyal customers. Take advantage of all major social networks including Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google Plus, Instagram and more. Take opportunities to communicate with your target group and don’t miss out on chances to directly interact with your customers.
In 2016, this highly social and mobile generation wants to be more entertained and engaged than before. Ecommerce companies will be more interested in spending on social media marketing programs which includes:
- Native advertising/Boosting posts on Facebook
- Tweeting for more engagement
- Using more relevant social media buttons for Facebook, Instagram, Google Plus, Pinterest and Twitter
- Fast customer service via social listening
- Hiring social media experts for better social engagement
B2B companies need to realize that B2B buyers are now comfortable in shopping from their PC’s directly from home or more conveniently from their iPhones, smartphones or tablets. This trend is increasing at a faster pace and you need to launch a user friendly ecommerce site as soon as possible to meet customer demands. If your site is ready, then you need to focus on design, speed, utility and aesthetics of customers. If you fail to do so in 2016, you will lose your online customers.
UX – Navigation on Desktop, Mobile, Tablet:
In 2016, user experience should be at the forefront of your omni-channel strategy. Top rated ecommerce websites continuously improve their search technology to improve their user interface & user experience (UI/UX) and promote their products relevance at the same time. Amazon, eBay, Buy.com and Staples have already better UX on PC’s, mobiles and tablets and as a result they have more customer retention than the websites with bad user experience. You should design a clean layout which must be easily accessible from all devices – desktop, mobile and tablets. You should do UX testing or usability testing on your website in order to understand what users do and why they do it? The big internet marketing giants like Google, Twitter, eBay and Amazon have incredible UI which has a direct impact on their consumers. These companies continuously test every aspect of their online business with loyal consumers to ensure high levels of customer satisfaction.
Mobile Commerce (mCommerce) – Must build a Mobile App:
Mobile shopping is increasing tremendously and is believed to grow continuously in 2016. For marketers and ecommerce businesses, it is very important to target the smartphone users as soon as possible. Currently mobile ecommerce accounts for only one-tenth of the total ecommerce purchases. For improving your sales make sure you provide crisp and vivid product descriptions along with videos and reviews on your platform. The engagement before the purchase makes an impact and potential customers really like this hassle free shopping. For example, Amazon’s one-click ordering is really quick and saves customer’s time. Make sure your website is highly responsive.
The mobile app development industry is evolving fast with Apple and Google now offering more than 700,000 mobile applications each in their respective online stores. According to The New York Times, “the mobile industry is now valued at more than $1.6 trillion. It’s expected to spike to a multi-trillion dollar industry in the next ten years”. So it is better to create a mobile app for your business now in order to hit the market in 2016.
If you are targeting mobile users, be sure to create pages that will load fast with small sized files and less codes. Be sure to optimize mobile checkout experience for greater speed and efficiency. Ensure streamlined payment options like PayPal. The number of form fields should be minimized for better user friendly experience.
Marketing Automation software is designed to aid marketers in understanding their customers and in devising strategies. Marketing Automation will be more trending in 2016 in order to operate these functions for ecommerce growth:
- Finding various ways to develop marketing campaigns and analyzing their effect on customers
- Managing all marketing campaigns and operations
- Organization and storage of all relevant and appropriate customer data
- Conversion of leads into customers
SaaS marketing automation platforms include Marketo, Exacttarget, Infusionsoft, Eloqua, Hubspot, SugarCRM(with customization), Zoho and Salesforce power users. The use of predictive analytics, Big Data and NLP algorithms (Natural Language Processing), customer segmentation using personas is helping marketers gain insights and develop new ideas to increase their engagement with their customers.
Retail Ecommerce New Technologies:
The increased online ecommerce experience will drive innovation in the retail store also. Expanded visibility to online inventory will mean interests all together administration frameworks and more partners utilizing mobile phones to help customers with finding the thing framework wide. Customer management won’t stop there. Those same mobile devices will have the capacity to distinguish and recognize a customer by means of their mobile phones.
The endless measure of customer information that can be tapped will empower partners to give related item proposals, put in a request, and look at a customer. Pleasing the customer in-store will tackle new significance.
Zahoor Bhat has over 10+ years of experience as an online editor and media manager. He has worked with major online news and content sites as a media manager. He is well versed with major content management systems and web platforms such as WordPress and social media networks including Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Google Business, Yelp, Instagram & Linkedin. He is an expert in content creation, proofreading and finally making it live. Being a social media expert, he is able to make relations with social media influencers and make sure to generate leads and grow business via different social media platforms.