Five e-commerce trends to shape your 2023 strategy
Consumers are the driving force behind a constantly changing, fragmented and evolving e-commerce landscape. To understand the way they shop online today, ChannelAdvisor, a complete multichannel solution for brands and retailers, recently surveyed more than 5000 global consumers across Australia, the US, the UK, France and Germany in partnership with global research firm Dynata.
Although the wake of the pandemic continues to ripple through the global retail landscape, a number of significant, evolving e-commerce trends have emerged this year that brands and retailers should keep top of mind as they navigate an increasingly dynamic economy.
Inflation’s impact on e-commerce is still unclear
From 2021 and even into early this year, 77 per cent of global consumers were still spending at or above the same levels online as they were a year prior. However, recent data shows an uncertain outlook, with a significant slowdown in Australian consumer spending, prices having risen 6.1 per cent but unemployment at a 48-year low. Despite continued spending in the first half of the year, more than 80 per cent of Australian consumers say they’re still concerned about inflation and its potential impact on their cost of living.
As economic uncertainty continues, spending habits may be further influenced by multiple factors, demonstrating inflation’s unknown and evolving impact over the coming months. In response, brands and retailers must monitor the expectations of their target demographics and adjust (or maintain) prices accordingly.
Marketplace popularity continues to grow
Marketplaces are convenient, one-stop shops that consumers can’t get enough of. In Australia, 75 per cent of consumers say they regularly use two or more marketplaces for browsing, shopping or buying, while 36 per cent say they use three or more.
Australian consumers are also the most likely to purchase from foreign sites with an average of 50 per cent across all age groups, but an even higher percentage among younger consumers. This marketplace expansion means sellers must take a multichannel approach to selling that meets the target audiences where they shop.
The number of digital touchpoints is on the rise
The overwhelming majority of Australian consumers now use multiple digital touchpoints (85 per cent) along their path to purchase. Similar to their activity on marketplaces, younger consumers also tend to be more nimble across digital spaces and visit more channels prior to purchase.
These digital touchpoints now include search engines, brand websites, social media, apps, online ads and even virtual reality. As the digital landscape grows more fragmented, centralising your operations as much as possible is key.
Click and Collect Is Here to Stay
Australians are among the biggest users of click-and-collect options across the globe (54 per cent). Millennials tend to be the biggest fans of the service with 66 per cent usage among 26- to 35-year-old Australians.
Clearly, consumers want options. The pandemic introduced people to this new way of buying, and today, they’ve come to expect it along with one- and two-day shipping. To keep up, brands must be agile, providing the experiences and options that consumers crave.
Retail media is essential for visibility
Retail media programs have experienced a meteoric rise in recent years, with many major retailers and marketplaces now offering ad options. Forty-two per cent of global consumers and 37 per cent of Australian consumers say they’ve clicked on a sponsored or promoted product in the past 12 months on a marketplace or retail site. The number is even higher among Gen Z (55 per cent) and Millennial (57 per cent) consumers.
Despite larger pools of consumers than ever before, brands must execute robust retail media campaigns to capture their attention among myriad product choices. These campaigns not only boost brand awareness but capture more conversions for increased sales and profit.
Meet consumers where they are
Consumers are no longer coming to you – you need to go to them. As the e-commerce landscape becomes more fragmented next year and beyond, those with a multichannel approach will thrive across channels, touchpoints and regions.
For a complete breakdown of the survey results, including industry-specific snapshots, download ChannelAdvisor’s 2022 Online Consumer Behaviour Global Report.
About the author: Darren Fifield is MD Apac at ChannelAdvisor.
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