5 E-Commerce Marketing Trends to Drive Conversions for JuLY 2019
Warmer weather is here and we are entering the “Summer of Smart Tech in E-Commerce” with consumers relying more heavily on voice-activated smart devices, customer service chatbots and augmented reality. Social selling is taking on a larger role in the online marketplace and is forcing companies to offer more convenient point of sales interfaces for smartphone-toting consumers.
We are laser focused on helping businesses succeed in selling across e-commerce platforms that are rapidly changing and increasingly competitive. Businesses are leveraging e-commerce in every aspect of their business - not just to market a product, but also to assist consumers with conflict resolution and customer service.
Online marketing is evolving in a way that grabs customers attention in new ways, delivers them to the point of sale faster and takes payment with increased convenience.
With summer here, it’s important that you know what is hot in e-commerce. Here are five e-commerce trends in 2019 that will help you enhance your customers’ experience from browsing, to point of sale to, to customer service, and everything in between.
Summer E-commerce Trends 2019:
1. Augmented Reality
Augmented Reality is revolutionizing how customers shop at home by allow them to see how a new piece of furniture, countertop appliance or home accessory will look in their home. Online retailers like Shopify are leading the industry in rolling out 3D modeling software applications that are wowing customers with new, engaging technology they can be used to browse and try out products.
Through applications like Shopify AR powered by 3D Warehouse, merchants can upload 3D models of their products and allow customers to place the 3D model right in front of them in their own reality. Augmented Reality has wide reaching applications. Consumers can test out how a paint color will look with the rest of their home’s decor. They can try on clothing to see if they like the color on them and how it will fit them. Or, if a new appliance will fit in the space they have (haven’t we all been there?!).
Augmented reality is becoming more accessible to small and medium-sized businesses, giving them the opportunity to allow their customers to have a highly experiential interaction with a product from the comfort of their own homes. Making an early investment in 3D modeling is showing strong long-term results in reducing return rates and increasing conversion rates.
While it may seem daunting, jumping into Augmented Reality with two feet is a solid bet right now. A relatively small number of online retailers have taken the plunge and industry leaders like Shopify have only been leveraging this new technology for less than a year. So for now, it remains one of the strongest e-commerce trends of 2019 to differentiate your business and gain market share before your competitors catch up!
2. Product Videos
For companies who just are not ready to take the Augmented Reality plunge, product
videos are a highly effective way to connect with customers. Video content is increasing important in an era where social media is a dominant player in how customers receive news, interact with personal and professional networks, communicate daily life and major life events, and shop. In fact, online retailers with engaging videos see customers stay an average of 88% longer.
Product videos are a powerful tool whether you are selling on your own website, on Amazon or through an Amazon Storefront.
Companies can leverage videos to connect with customers by:
- Demonstrating their product,
- Creating buzz with a funny, impactful and/or memorable clip, or
- Showcasing or catching the attention of social media influencers
One impactful product imagery example is called an “unboxing video” that connects with customers by watching someone open the package and interacting with the product for the first time. This is a relatable experience that builds excitement for prospective customers.
Effective product videos also help improve your search engine optimization. By engaging customers with dynamic videos, they end up staying on your website longer and sharing your video on their social media which builds more backlinks and clicks. This helps push up your search engine rankings.
By the end of this year, 80% of all internet traffic will be video streaming. If you aren’t leveraging the power of video to market your product, you will be left behind.
Chatbots are an increasingly popular resource for businesses. By leveraging artificial intelligence, businesses are able to help customers find the product they are looking for whether they are browsing online or using the retailer’s app in a brick and mortar store.
Chatbots are also being put to work to assist customers’ post-sale needs. Customers are able to chat with an artificial intelligence-powered representative 24/7 who can help manage basic complaints and direct them to an appropriate resource. Utilizing chatbots enriches the customer experience by delivering highly responsive and effective service. And, importantly, it reduces operational and personnel costs by delegating less complex tasks to AI virtual assistants vs. human representatives. Also, chatbots’ accuracy in addressing consumers’ concerns will increase as they are used by more businesses, collect more data and interface with more customers.
4. Social Selling
Facebook and Instagram allow businesses to connect with target market segments through cost-effective advertising (see social media marketing). Now, social selling is becoming more prevalent on social media platforms by giving brands the opportunity purchase ads and sell their product direct-to-consumer.
In a culture of individuals who interface with the world through their smartphones, social selling is expected to quickly take on a larger role in the online marketplace. It streamlines the customer experience by pairing interesting content (including dynamic videos) with strong customer reviews and an easy-to-navigate point of sale.
Social selling is the next frontier of online advertising because of its ability to generate a sale without the standard 8 to 10 marketing impressions. As social selling becomes more important to businesses, social media giants like Facebook and Instragram will continue to double down in promoting this new-ish marriage of advertising and point of sale innovations.
5. Web Payments
If current customer sentiment can be summarized by one word in July of 2019, it is “convenience”. Social selling is streamlining marketing to customers, anticipating their wants with big data and artificial intelligence, and delivering them to the point of sale with ease. There is one thing that can kill your conversion rate - a clunky, onerous web form needed to complete the sale.
Optimizing your web payment functionality is one of the most important e-commerce trends 2019.
Customers (especially smartphone users) are gravitating to, and practically demanding, more convenient online points of sale. Leveraging applications that allow customers to pay with mobile wallets like ApplePay, online payment services like PayPal, and even prefill credit card capabilities that are offered on most smartphones will help increase your conversion rate.
The saying “time kills all deals” is especially true this season, so giving customers the option to make expedited purchasing decisions is critical to your top line.
E-commerce Trends 2019: Summer of Smart Tech in E-Commerce
I hope you take advantage of what is hot in e-commerce as it gets hot outside. Growing your business this summer means leveraging smart tech in e-commerce for your marketing, point of sale and customer service. Maximizing your impact also means partnering with experienced thought leaders in the industry. We can help!