How to Innovate in E-Commerce Industry: Tips for 2017 and Beyond


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Whether you have already set up a business or just plan to establish an innovative e-commerce startup, it is essential to keep an eye on all the latest trends and recent ideas in this industry to be able to compete and win your audience. Today it is not enough to have a nice online store selling attractive items. Collecting, testing and analyzing data, together with customer focus and ease of use are the very basic necessities.

These days online shopping is mainly driven by price and convenience; however, consumers tend to want more, like the ability to buy unique goods that can’t be found in local trading networks, quick turnaround, fast delivery, anytime 24/7 access and even more. It is likely that such advances will become common in the next 5–10 years. Millennials drive trends in e-commerce and other industries in particular. These people are permanently connected and they dwell in an online ecosystem where everything happens in real time and they have an opportunity to call the shots through social media.

This one-click convenience easily wins over and makes shopping one of the most trending activities on the web. The ability to buy all the stuff even without leaving your bed plays well into the hands of e-shops worldwide, like Amazon or eBay. Moreover, these giants are the early adopters of innovative ideas for e-commerce business and they try to offer a solution to almost every product. So, how to innovate in e-commerce industry? What small e-shops can offer? — Custom and personalized experience for specific buyers or products is something that they can hardly offer.

Online shopping innovation trends for 2017 and beyond:

Drones — the next delivery system

The growth in popularity of drone delivery will probably be the most innovative trend in the next few years. Despite the fact that wider employment of this new transport system is delayed due to airspace regulations, major retail companies and delivery agents already explore all avenues of implementing drone technology within their businesses. Moreover, building of drone ports, special airports for drones, is a trending topic. Such e-commerce innovation can turn same-day or even same-hour delivery into reality, promoting even more online purchases down the road.

Droids — ground-based delivery agents

These little robots are slowly coming into notice as well. They can overcome small sets of stairs, avoid obstacles and foot traffic, stream live video and communicate with customers while transferring up to 20 pounds of goods. The introduction of droids delivery can reduce vehicle emission, improve and fast-track the shipping handling, and save up to 30% of transportation costs. These small helpers are already put to use in several luxury hotels to bring useful items like soaps, towels or even room service dishes. Some companies have implemented own droids to accelerate pizza delivery, dodging traffic jams and parking challenges.

Discovering with Augmented Reality

Goggle technologies and virtual reality headsets can transform the traditional shopping experience into an interactive 3D journey. They can help buyers to “visit” your shop, choose right clothing color or size, select matching accessories and so decrease purchases return rates. Do you offer interior design services or sell furniture? — Let shoppers see how perfectly this new couch will fit into their living room or make color selection easier with augmented or virtual technology tools.

As technologies are constantly evolving, e-tail companies continually try to find ways and means to improve customer experience and their conversion rates. Major retailers plan to implement recent innovations to create a superior digital experience and uphold customer value.

In the near future business owners will use these and other discoveries to build advanced strategies and gain an advantage over their competitors.

E-commerce innovation tips for 2017 and beyond
E-business in the United States is expected to generate over $425 billion in 2019 and over 485 billion in 2021. Vigorous growth, isn’t it? About 4.3 billion of people worldwide are still not connected to the Internet. As the number diminishes, new groups of customers will be available to buy online. Forrester Research predicts that the number of online consumers will reach 270 million by 2020 and mobile devices are set to drive that growth. So what features and offerings will become the game-changers in the next 5 years? What innovations in online shopping should you consider implementing?

  • Interactive content
  • Currently content is one of the leading ways to attract consumers’ attention, engage them and build a strong emotional bond with your brand for a long haul. Quality posts help your buyers to keep abreast of the latest news and promotional events, learn new things, inspire and in all to stay loyal.
    Content production includes multiple areas like product description, service overview, blog posts, online and offline advertisements, social media posts, and even more. Beyond that, don’t restrict yourself to written content only, implement such things as infographics, podcasts, photos, videos, tutorials, etc.

  • M-Commerce
  • Mobile is among the top eCommerce trends 2017. The share of m-commerce sales in the United States is expected to grow up to 65 percent in 2017 and almost 80 percent in 2020, as compared to 46 percent in 2015. In 2020 mobile commerce revenues are expected to total almost $336 billion in the US, in contrast with $156 billion in 2017. For these reasons, e-tailing businesses should focus on their mobile offerings, work on engaging notifications and additional conveniences.

  • Deal-of-the-day
  • Impulse buying is another trend that works well across all the industries. The majority of people love snapping up products on offer, even if they haven’t planned to buy these goods before. Flash sales are based on emotions and success of such shopping events as Cyber Monday is the best example for startups and well-established brands.

  • Personalization
  • These days, more and more customers expect individualized shopping experience both online and offline. With the rise of mobile commerce, various marketing tools, and wearable technologies a vast amount of consumer data is now available. Buyers are willing to receive personalized newsletters and relevant recommendations, based on hobbies and interests, location, latest orders, favorite items and browsing results.

  • Shipping matters
  • Delivery time and price are among the top factors when it comes to e-tailing. Today, people are impatient and they don’t want to wait for one-two weeks for their purchases to arrive. That’s why brands often advertise same-day or overnight delivery, where possible. Moreover, about 29 percent of online shoppers are ready to overpay for same-day delivery, according to Forrester report.
    However, when it comes to shipping fee 28 percent will leave their carts if the delivery charge is too high. While 75 percent of consumers will abandon their buying and opt for those retailers that offer free shipping.

    Bottom line
    2017 will definitely bring much innovation to e-businesses. Think of the solutions that will turn first-time buyers into loyal fans of your brand, who are brought together by similar interests, who engage and contribute. Work on your social media offerings and engage your admirers. Encourage consumers to write reviews and share their opinion. Word-of-mouth marketing can seamlessly enhance the consumer’s shopping experience and boost your conversion rates.


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