5 E-commerce Marketing Trends to Drive Conversions for Spring 2019
E-commerce is constantly changing as consumer behaviors shift and technology advances. Stagnant businesses are bound to decline in the ever-progressing digital sphere. Staying ahead of trends is the only way to remain relevant in the hyper-competitive world of e-commerce. At Seller’s Choice, we’ve made the commitment to our clients to provide monthly, seasonal, and weekly updates about the changes in the e-commerce world.
Here’s everything you need to know about the hottest marketing trends for spring 2019 to help your conversions and take your e-commerce business to the next level.
1. Augmented Reality
The accessibility of 3D modeling software solutions is making augmented reality (AR) a more viable option for brands that want to leverage eye-catching technology. Shopify AR, powered by 3D warehouse, is changing the way e-commerce stores can offer product browsing to their online customers.
One of the only drawbacks to online shopping is that customers can’t feel and experience the product before purchasing. Consumers want to try it on in the dressing room or see how the item would match their decor. Augmented reality bridges the gap and offers this in-person experience from the comfort of the consumer’s home.
Here’s how it works. A merchant uploads 3D models of their products to compatible stores, like Shopify. The user can then use the augmented reality feature, typically on their mobile device, to put that 3D model in the reality around them.
Augmented reality is especially popular for clothing and home goods. Customers can “try on” clothes and accessories so they can get an idea of how the color will look on them or how it will fall on their body. They can also put home goods directly into their home to see what it will look like compared to the rest of the room and décor.
They hold up their phone in their kitchen, and the blender is placed right on the customer’s countertop. Or they can see what a shirt would look like when they try it on in the mirror. This lets the consumer get a better sense of size, scale, color, and product details within the world around them.
Augmented reality is showing huge benefits in a higher conversion rate and lower return rate. Customers get the chance to experience the product firsthand to ensure it’s the right choice for their needs, which creates a more satisfying shopping experience.
Plus, AR is still in its infancy, so it’s remained a strong competitive differentiator for 2019. Be the first in your field to use augmented reality because it’s going to be a part of everyday life in the near future. Get ahead of the curve and you’ll be able to grab a huge segment of your market.
(Get some ideas from some of Shopify’s top 3D modeling experts here.)
Image via Stryker Munley Group
2. Product Videos
Not all brands can offer augmented reality right now, and that’s okay. The next best thing is the product video, and it’s one of the most successful marketing trends right now. Customers love video because it’s personal, interactive, and engaging. Video has become essential to e-commerce brand differentiation in order to tell a story, share and share your voice. It also broadens your reach and social shares, while engaging mobile customers.
Product videos serve as “how to” videos that show the product in action. Customers get to see what the product looks like in the hands of a real person while being put to use. These are a great way to engage the customer with your brand voice while also promoting your products and encouraging purchases. These kinds of how to videos work well on your Amazon listings too!
Influencer product videos are also great for gaining traction online and driving conversions. Companies pay influencers to use, display and review their products. This gets the product in front of the influencer’s following, but it also helps bridge the virtual gap by showing the product used in real life by a real person that consumers trust and value. Learn how to recruit the right social influencer for your business here.
Some customers still want the reassurance that the product is the right fit for them. At a physical location, they’d ask a sales associate for help. Online, they would have to contact your business by phone or email, which can take too long—and they end up abandoning the purchase altogether.
Chatbots driven by artificial intelligence are making this process easier for both sellers and consumers. Customers can ask questions to the chatbot, who can respond with accurate and instantaneous answers that are not as “canned” and predictable as one would assume. They use artificial intelligence to constantly learn and understand the customer’s needs to personalize the consumer experience.
This can work for product inquiries, style and design tips, returns, and any other customer service inquiries. Chatbots let you provide 24/7 customer service to your customers while freeing your team to focus on sales, marketing, and logistics. Learn more about chatbots here.
4. Social Selling
Social networks like Facebook and Instagram are capitalizing on their advertising strengths by implementing e-commerce checkout options right on their platforms. Direct-to-consumer brands can now market, pay for ads, and sell directly to their consumers through social media.
Even Google is getting in on “search selling.” As you’re searching for information on Google, the search engine will throw in relevant products, placed in quality real estate on search results.
Social and search selling is revolutionizing the way e-commerce businesses connect with and sell to customers. You no longer need 8 to 10 marketing impressions to convert your prospect. Customers are more willing to make fast purchasing decisions on social sites if they see great content with strong reviews.
We anticipate this is only going to increase in popularity as social networks boost their e-commerce offerings and consumers make purchasing decisions based on convenience and content. Learn how to get your business in on the social selling trend here.
5. Web Payments
Because of social selling and other changes in purchasing habits, customers are getting used to new methods of payment. Consumers mostly care about two key factors when it comes to payment: safety and convenience. If they don’t feel the site or payment is secure, they will not make a purchase. If they have to fill out a time-consuming form, they’re likely to move on without clicking “buy.” This is especially true for mobile customers, which is quickly becoming the core demographic of e-commerce shopping.
You want to implement safety and security measures, but you’ll also want to consider one-tap payments. This uses APIs to automatically fill in consumer data, so they don’t waste time filling out your form. This speeds up the checkout process before they get the chance to change their mind.
Let’s envision this in action. Someone’s browsing on Instagram and they see your advertisement. They click on it, and they’re brought to your product’s landing page. The form is automatically filled in with their data so they click “buy.” They’ve only had two taps since they’ve seen your advertisement, and you’ve made the sale. Then, they can easily go back to browsing Instagram. If they had to fill out a form or were presented with a lot of info, they’d likely switch back to Instagram without making the payment.
Remember: Even the best products won’t make it through a clunky checkout process.
Image via Data Floq
If it Aint Broke...
2018 trends are pushing over into 2019 as well. So if you made changes to your marketing campaign last year, these strategies could still be relevant—you might just need a few tweaks to keep up with mobile customers and tech advancements.
Last year’s trends that are still on the upswing include:
- Targeting Millennials and Gen Zers
- Creating a consistent omnichannel experience online, mobile, and in-store
- Utilizing user-generated content, especially on social media
- Optimizing keywords and content for voice search and voice ordering
Learn more about these trends here:
See what some of the top CEOs, marketers, and leaders are saying about e-commerce trends for 2019 here.
All About Convenience
Ultimately, 2019 is the year of speed and convenience. Customers aren’t hesitant to buy online or on their mobile devices anymore. They want a simple process and with as little friction as possible, and they want certainty that the products they’re buying will work for them.
This means giving them the “in-store sales experience” through augmented reality, product videos, and customer service chatbots. It also means making the checkout process easy and transparent, especially on social media platforms.
Interested in driving your conversions with strong marketing campaigns? Reach out to us for a consultation to rocket your e-commerce store forward this spring 2019.