In 2014, the US annual retail eCommerce sales were over $300 billion for the first time, totaling $303.94 billion.  Since then, eCommerce has only increased and within the next five years, eCommerce sales are expected to reach $3.5 trillion.

2016 will continue the growing practice of online shopping. If you aren’t keeping up with trends in the eCommerce space, your business is at risk of falling behind the competition.

We have gone ahead and collected the newest trends and tools for eCommerce, so you can stay ahead of the game.

eCommerce Trends

Multi-Channel Shopping – Consumers will continue to visit sites like Amazon, which offer a selection of unique items from a variety of vendors.

Mobile sites and Tablet Shopping – Mobile and online shopping are trends that continue to grow in the US. Today, nearly two-thirds of Americans own smartphones, which pose as a key entry point to the online world.

Customized Shopping Carts – Business owners are now utilizing shopping cart platforms that integrate extra plugins and options outside of checking out and viewing the cart.

Same Day Delivery and Faster Shipping – Following Amazon Prime, which offers its members exclusive same say delivery for certain goods, more brands will begin to implement same day delivery and faster shipping methods to meet the needs of customers.

Flash Sales – Encouraging impulse buying through the temporary discount of products will help businesses draw in customers and increase revenue.

More Personalized Shopping Experiences – A growing trend within the last year has allowed businesses to add personal greetings and give item recommendations to their customers to create a more customer centric experience.

Click and Collect – Customers loved when Starbucks began allowing them to order their drink online and pick it up in the store. The event of customers purchasing a product online and then going to the store to pick it up in person will become standard.

Digital Shopping Experiences – Rebecca Minkoff recently teamed up with Amazon to implement smart mirrors in a New York City store, allowing customers to look up items online while inside their dressing room. Large brands will continue this new trend so shoppers will be able to combine retail and ecommerce shopping.

Non-Intrusive Web Ads – Customers will begin to receive less popup advertisements, as ads become more relevant and frankly, less annoying.

Customer Rewards Programs – More businesses will create rewards programs for customers to maintain customer relationships.

Website Videos – Video marketing will continue to grow and more businesses will begin to implement interactive video technology to increase engagement and conversions on their sites.

Social Collaboration – With the popularity of social media, businesses will continue to use tools that allow social interaction between customers and brands. With social media integration, customers can communicate with one another and provide suggestions about products to prospective buyers. To learn more about social media and eCommerce (also known as social commerce), click here.

eCommerce Tools

There are endless tools available in the eCommerce space helping businesses improve their websites and engage their followers. We have compiled a list of eCommerce solutions to guide you through the variety of today’s tools.

Social Media Management

Buffer – A social media management platform for marketers and agencies.

HootSuite – Another social media management platform.

All-In-One eCommerce Platforms

Shopify – An eCommerce platform that allows a business owner to design her or her website.

BigCommerce – An all-in-one eCommerce platform.

Magento – An eCommerce platform that offers a seamless shopping experience across multiple devices.

Shopping Cart Solutions

Ecwid – An eCommerce shopping cart that can be added to multiple sites, blogs, and social networks.

3dcart – A platform that builds online stores and eCommerce shopping carts for business owners.

Volusion – An eCommerce software and shopping cart solution.

Live Chat Tools

BoldChat – A customizable live chat and customer service software.

LivePerson – A live chat software to enhance the user experience on a website.

Tools for Website Customization

Unbxd – Provides a site search and personalization platform to help eCommerce companies engage customers on their sites.

Barilliance – A website personalization tool for eCommerce.

Wix.com – A free, customizable website builder.

eRated – Integrates all of a business’s ratings and reviews to create a unified identity to boost sales.

Webyclip – Combines eCommerce sites with relevant videos to increase conversions and revenue.

Social Integration

Spot.IM – Turns any website into a social network, enabling business owners to provide their shoppers with a community to post comments and concerns.

Tracky – A social collaboration and project management tool.

Lead Generation and Customer Relationship Management

SalesForce – A customer relationship management and cloud computing software program meant to build meaningful relationships with customers.

Infusionsoft – A small business CRM, sales, and marketing software.

OptinMonster – A lead generation software.

Website Security Tools

SSL.com – Provides security for eCommerce websites.

Comodo – An internet security website for eCommerce protection.

Email Marketing

Bronto – A commerce marketing provider that enables retailers to drive revenue through their email, mobile, and social campaigns.

Mail Chimp – An email marketing solution to manage subscribers, send emails, and track results.


 

The eCommerce world is constantly changing as technology continually develops and more eCommerce solutions become available. If you stay updated on new trends in the eCommerce space, you will have to ability to draw in more customers and stay relevant in your industry. While it might seem intimidating to try unfamiliar tactics, your business will benefit greatly from the risk of trying new tools.