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Whether it is buying online from the comfort of home, convenience, easy checkout, maintaining social distancing norms, and avoiding touchpoints by cutting trips to supermarkets during the pandemic, the reasons behind eCommerce growth are many. And the statistics portray the same picture. This blog provides top eCommerce website development trends that will define the industry in 2021.
Ecommerce websites need to be completely user-centric geared to offer customers the best online shopping experience. It is important to incorporate eCommerce development best practices to meet the needs of customers.
Companies are scrambling to adjust to the world that is getting borderless with markets opening up across different geographies. It is important to partner with a leading eCommerce website development company to get benefits from the latest trends.
COVID-19 & its Impact on Ecommerce
COVID-19 has made the biggest impact on eCommerce. Due to lockdown, several stores were shut for people. However, due to the crisis, online shopping came to the rescue of people looking to buy essential items or groceries. People have now accepted online shopping as a way of living. Custom eCommerce website development is one of the most effective solutions to minimize the business impact of the pandemic and stay afloat during tumultuous times.
eCommerce Website Development Trends 2021
Voice-enabled technology is fast becoming the buzzword for eCommerce. Come 2021, voice assistants are slated to become the future of online shopping.
Voice commerce uses voice recognition technology to facilitate the buying of goods and services. It eliminates customers to make purchases through voice commands instead of typing out keywords.
The buying process encompasses searching through a microphone, with which customers search and buy online with the help of a virtual digital assistant (VDA) such as Google Assistant, Siri, or Amazon Alexa.
Voice commerce provides businesses with an entirely new way to revamp the shopping experience in everyday life.
This statistic presents the number of smart speaker buyers in the United States from 2019 to 2021. In 2019, the number of internet users who had made at least one purchase via smart speaker during the year amounted to 18.3 million. The number of U.S. smart speaker buyers is projected to reach almost 23.5 million in 2021.
- It is important to prepare your site for voice-based navigation on your website and mobile app.
- Voice-friendly navigation for mobile applications and eCommerce sites. Incorporate schemas for not only seamless navigation but also helping search engines decipher your site.
- Rise above the clutter to ensure simplicity in buying with a simple command of voice.
- Optimize and focus on high performance with an emphasis on fast and fluid mobile use.
- Actions and skills on Alexa and Google Assistant.
Rise of Contactless Payment
The rising expectations of consumers and the COVID-19 pandemic have seen a surge in the demand for contactless payment across the eCommerce industry. With the era of omnichannel eCommerce, voice-based smart devices are playing a critical role in facilitating contactless payment with speed and convenience.
Contactless payments can be made through different modes (credit, debit cards, net-banking, UPI, wallets). Retailers need to integrate order management systems for effective inventory management from the backend.
Consumers mostly use contactless cards for buying the essentials.
Here’s a breakdown:
- Grocery: 85%
- Pharmacy: 39%
- Retail: 38%
- Quick service restaurants (QSRs), fast food: 36%
- Transit: 9%
According to Mastercard Contactless Consumer Polling, more than half (51%) of Americans are now using some form of contactless payment, which includes tap-to-go credit cards and mobile wallets like Apple Pay.
While it goes without saying the contactless payment will grow exponentially in the year 2021. However, the expectation also revolves around payment options. Consumers are looking for more options to make payment effortless. Option to use payment providers, irrespective of the location. Also, hassle-free online shopping, easy checkout, and shipping while using global retail giants such as Amazon.
With the increase in online shopping triggered by pandemic, e-retailers are coming up with different ways of eCommerce payment with various types of payment gateways:
- Gateway takes customers to the payment page of a Playtech company such as PayPal to complete the transaction.
- Payment on eCommerce sites, but the payment processing off-site.
- Payment and processing without any third parties directly on the site. Option to use digital wallets or net banking to complete the checkout.
Frictionless payment options will improve site abandonment. Ecommerce sites need to integrate Apple Pay, PayPal, GPay, and more.
Mobile Shopping: Major growth for eCommerce
Mobile shopping will continue to strengthen its dominance and witness innovation.
COVID-19 pandemic has brought about a phenomenal shift in the buying patterns. There is a need to bring about a complete change so that eCommerce businesses meet the new demands of customers. It requires a lot of flexibility. Enter -Headless Commerce.
Headless commerce brings about a change and to put it in simple layman’s terms, it is the separation of the front end and back end of an eCommerce application.
Headless commerce empowers brands to build custom experiences that shoppers can’t get anywhere else and requires APIs to ensure coordinated and consistent experiences across any device, not just the standard screen.
Headless commerce eliminates complexities involved related to IT, making front-end changes simply because it does not require back-end updates.
eCommerce Statistics: Current and Future
Statistics indicate around a total of 258.9 million digital buyers in the United States in 2018 with an expected increase of over 307 million buyers in 2023, reaching 79.2 and 90.8 percent of U.S. internet users respectively.
- Global eCommerce sales in the retail industry are expected to reach $4.5 trillion by 2021.
- The year 2020 is likely to witness B2B eCommerce sales outpace B2C eCommerce sales. (HubSpot, 2018)
- 92 billion – the estimated number of global digital buyers in 2019. It’s expected to reach 2.14 billion by 2021. (Statista)
- 67% of millennials prefer online over in-store shopping due to convenience. (BigCommerce, 2017)
By the year 2040, it’s estimated that 95% of all purchases will be through eCommerce. (Nasdaq)
Here are 2020 trends in eCommerce
Product-Market Fit Varies by Region and Country
It is essential to understand geography to make strategic decisions on the product-market. There are several questions to ask before you target global markets such as understanding the need for the product and validating demand, as well as providing the opportunity for your offerings within new areas.
It is vital to gauge the importance of lucrative online industries based on region and align those verticals with your expansion plans.
Equally important is understanding the potential of each targeted geographies.
- Understand market segment and define geographic areas
- Define the existing competition in the local market
- Define the market’s potential
- Anticipate market share and selling price
Stay Focused on Localized Language and Currency
It is essential to go native with the site’s language to make or break global sales. Language plays an essential role in understanding where they shop and whether they buy. Localization can often imply that everything needs to be country-specific.
Getting heavily scrutinized areas of a site right is critical: headlines and product titles. Only after you’ve gained traction does full-scale translation using a native copywriter, and local idioms make sense.
When it comes to eCommerce, online payment options can be a big factor in buying decisions. However, it is often easily overlooked by many people. It is vital to take into consideration different aspects of buying habits. Without considering different factors, it might be not possible for companies to implement payment factors that might help the audience across the globe.
While credit cards are number one, several digital payment systems like PayPal and Apple Pay are closing the gap. On the global scale, credit cards and those same digital payments also dominate.
For some, the differences in preference are small. For others, the gap is wide. However, while local differences in payment methods, language, and currency matter,
Here are top platforms to launch for your eCommerce site
One of the most widely used eCommerce platforms, Shopify is growing in terms of popularity, making it one of the most comprehensive platforms around. Shopify is an eCommerce platform that provides a point of sale feature to grow and transform your business.
Shopify provides a plethora of features that are easy to build and manage your online store. It provides themes by world-renowned designers to simply give your website looks on Shopify.
Shopify seamlessly integrates with 100+ external payment gateways from across the world right from bitcoin to PayPal.
- Inventory management
Manage the entire inventory with Shopify with an entire option to track stock counts, and stop selling products when inventory exhausts
- Product variations
Product variations, such as multiple sizes, colors, materials with their rates/pricing, SKU, weight, and inventory.
- Product organization
Organize products based on different elements such as category, type, season, sale, and more. Use smart collections to sort products based on vendor, price, and inventory level automatically.
- Multiple images
Add multiple images for your products to show off your product from all angles.
- SEO product tags
Optimize product pages for search engines with product specific meta tags, titles, and URL handles.
- Digital products
Customers can quickly order and download digital products right from the online store.
Seamlessly import or export your products using CSV files or Shopify’s importer/exporter apps.
- Unlimited products
No cap or unlimited type of products you can sell in your online store.
Feature-rich eCommerce platform solution, Magento offers complete flexibility and control over the functionality of an online channel. Magento’s administration interface provides the option to tailor your site based on business requirements. Scalable and backed by a vast support network, Magento is the ultimate platform with search engine optimization, catalog management, and marketing tools that give merchants the ability to create sites that provide an unrivaled shopping experience for their customers.
Magento is open-source and can be downloaded and installed on its own servers. It comes with additional plans that offer hosted cloud versions.
However, it is a fairly advanced matter that is almost impossible to set up without technical knowledge. Magento doesn’t offer any custom designs for stores either, so you’ll have to shop for templates.
Magento has both free and paid with the Community Version free. Their Enterprise option, perfect for thousands of products and tons of traffic is expensive with prices ranging from $15,000 to even $50,000 a year.
- Marketing, Promotions, and Conversion Tools
- Site Management
- Catalog Management
- Catalog Browsing
- Product Browsing
- Order Management
- Checkout, Payment and Shipping
Powering almost 30% of sites, WordPress is one of the most powerful tools in the internet era. It is straightforward to use with the ability to build a website of almost any complexity or magnitude. While closest to free, anyone can build a website on WordPress. However, making an eCommerce store is difficult. With the right plugin based on your requirements, this changes completely. And that’s where WooCommerce comes into play.
An exponentially popular plugin, WooCommerce gives you almost every feature you could need from an e-commerce store. For regular WordPress users, WooCommerce will be as easy to operate. Furthermore, it is effortless to build and design. Taking just a few minutes for installation, it has a wide range of features for the community. The setup wizard provides stores’ basic configuration and the room to explore.
The plugin is free for WordPress sites. However, there are few moderately-priced extensions, but the core product costs nothing. The extensions are easy to use and enable as a regular WordPress plugin.
BigCommerce is a robust eCommerce software containing a complete suite of features to build an online store. However, don’t just mistake it for a website builder. This eCommerce platform offers tools to streamline online business, allowing you to focus on what you do best. It has excellent features such as handling orders, products, and customers and in-built CRM, with different marketing tools, analytics dashboards, and free themes.
Construction and design might give a difficult time to non-tech savvy. But they have seamless 24/7 customer support.
Just on the lines of WooCommerce, BigCommerce provides its own tour/tutor system introducing several useful features, which we highly recommend.
- Manage orders and inventory
Powerful control panel to completely process and fulfill orders end to end from a single location.
- Accept payments from leading providers.
BigCommerce doesn’t put any additional rates or costs for using your preferred payment gateway.
- Marketing features
An eCommerce website is search engine optimization friendly aimed to increase organic traffic.
- Optimized for conversion
Drive traffic and empower to get more sales out of the traffic.
It comes with a free 15-day trial. However, BigCommerce is a paid-only platform with three different plans; the most economical plans start with a very reasonable $29.95 monthly. Against the price, you get unlimited -products, storage, as well as bandwidth.
The only flipside is this plan is at a 1.5% per-order transaction fee. If you don’t pay the payment, you’ll need to upgrade to a $79.95 plan and their most expensive plan will cost $249.95.
You can also decide to buy custom themes, typically ranging from $125 to 250.
The Ecommerce industry is at the cusp of change and consistently evolving. It is important for eCommerce companies to stay updated with the latest trends. While these trends are just a few, there are emerging trends creating a buzz in the eCommerce industry such as drones, facial recognition in stores, AI in customer sourcing and more. In such scenarios, it is important to understand your business needs and target audience.
While the ability to innovate will help stand tall in a highly competitive industry, Merely copying a trend by applying business logic will not yield any result.