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The Top 7 E-commerce Trends of 2021

You’ve set up your e-commerce store on Joomla and you've started selling. You’ve mastered the basics of digital marketing and SEO, and you’re steadily growing your brand. It’s all going well when you realize that your competitors are edging ahead of you and growing faster. Nine times out of 10, that’s because they’re keeping one eye on emerging e-commerce trends and adopting those that are relevant to their business model. If you’re not preparing for 2021 and evaluating the potential of these e-commerce trends then you could find that 2021 is the year that your business halts its progress. Here are the key online selling trends that you need to know about.

Focus on Transparency

With a brick-and-mortar store, customers can walk around to look at products, pick them up, check the price, and buy accordingly. While it seems that this common-sense approach should be a priority for e-commerce brands, far too many still haven’t prioritized transparency. As more and more transactions move online, consumers want as much of the physical experience of shopping as possible, and that means providing as close to a face-to-face experience as possible. Transparency is vital, especially when it comes to pricing. All prices displayed on your e-commerce product pages should be up-front about the cost of a product. Don’t add shipping fees or taxes at the last stage of checkout.

Personalization and the Shopping Experience

If your e-commerce venture isn’t making use of its vast amounts of data to personalize a buying experience then you’re already falling behind. Data-driven strategies are more important than ever, and personalization, whether it’s in the form of AI-powered chatbots or targeted email marketing, is critical for 2021 and beyond. Using predictive ordering, customized product pages, and a more personal approach to marketing and sales will be the key to scaling an e-commerce business in 2021. If you’ve been ignoring your access to data or making it work for you then you will watch as your competitors race ahead of you.

You should also study behavioral segmentation of your customers. This is a form of marketing segmentation that divides people into different groups with specific common behavioral patterns.

Asset Management

With e-commerce, it’s all about the digital. From your web design to your content to your workflow, managing your data assets is more important than ever, especially for e-commerce-only brands. The goal here is to streamline your management of those assets, and that means using the right software tools. Ideally, you should be using a digital asset management software solution to manage your digital assets because they will allow you to:

For instance, you could make the shopping experience a breeze by:

  • Maintain brand consistency
  • Improve insights gleaned from your analytics
  • Keep your digital assets safe
  • Improve employee collaboration
  • Streamline workflow
  • Speed up time to market
  • Make compliance easier to stay on top of

Consider how long it takes you to get a new employee up to date on how to use your digital assets, and how complicated it has become. Using a more fluid and agile software will ensure that your team can focus on activities that will see your e-commerce brand grow.

E-commerce Logistics

If there’s one area that is being affected by new technologies in e-commerce, it’s order fulfillment. E-commerce logistics is a huge industry by itself, and all e-commerce business models should be making use of:

  • Autonomous delivery processes
  • Smart sensors for inventory management
  • Blockchain tracking

The goal is to increase product delivery time and efficiency, all the while ensuring that fulfillment costs are kept down. Automation is going to be the main driver of order fulfillment in 2021, with AR and machine learning at the core of all fulfillment flows.

Customization in Packaging

If you’re making sales and sending out your products in plain packaging then you’re missing out on a big opportunity. Packaging is becoming more important than ever, and consumers want that customized packaging, which will help your brand stand out. Creating customized packaging means being able to focus clearly on individual elements that can then be used as part of your brand identity and marketing. Consider the durability, recyclability, and the aesthetic qualities of your current packaging. When your packaging arrives, it’s not the end of the sales process. It can be a critical moment in brand loyalty that reinforces consumer/business alignment. When the concept of branding is more important than ever, customized packaging is one trend that shouldn’t be overlooked.

More Diverse Payment Options

In an ideal world your business will be able to take payments in any way that your consumers want to use. The problem is that those consumers have a lot of ways that they want to pay. Luckily, Joomla has made it very easy to accept most forms of payment, as long as you have the right extensions in place. Basics like credit/debit cards are easy enough, but PayPal payments can also be taken very easily with the right Joomla resources. Even less popular payment options like Bitcoin can be integrated into your e-commerce pages meaning that browsing customers are less likely to abandon a shopping cart at the last minute because you don’t accept their preferred way to pay.

Voice Search

Smartphones and smart speakers are leading more people than ever to get the answers and the products they need simply by speaking. The rise of voice search has been steady, but far too many e-commerce business owners are neglecting its importance. When it comes to SEO and search engine results pages, your digital marketing strategy will be falling behind if you’re not making adjustments to respond to the rise in voice searches. In terms of digital marketing, voice search is set to be the big tech disruption, and if you want your e-commerce store to continue to grow in 2021 then you will need to pivot your digital strategies sooner rather than later.

E-commerce trends can quickly change and evolve. The only way to keep ahead of them is to know what’s coming. The more that you keep up to date with the latest technologies and trends that are going to affect the e-commerce landscape, the easier it will be to identify those trends that are particularly relevant to you. If you want your Joomla e-commerce store to grow in 2021, then it's time to take a closer look at the trends that could change the industry permanently.