With the New Year well underway, we have taken a look what 2016 will have to offer in terms of ecommerce innovation.
As always, customer experience is at the heart of everything. Creative channel cross-over that keeps pace with customer expectations is what everyone is aiming for this year.
Making it mobile
Last year more than two thirds of all Black Friday purchases were mobile sales. It’s possible that half of all ecommerce transactions could be made using mobile devices this year. Soon, replicating the desktop experience of your website on mobile devices won’t be good enough. Increasingly, optimising the buying experience for mobile devices will be at the core of your strategy for growth.
Socialising your strategy
We know a solid presence on the right social media platforms builds the brand. Now there’s a growing trend to provide purchase options directly from these platforms too. Pinterest introduced buyable pins in 2015 which allow customers to decide and buy right there, without leaving Pinterest. Facebook is testing this approach too and there’s likely to be growing demand for options to buy from social media platforms in 2016. Some users might not like it, for others it will be exactly what they have been waiting for.
Building for the future
In the US, one interesting development is the introduction of flagship or ‘guidestores’ by some notable online e-tailers. Would you believe this new breed of ‘street-tailers’, who are combining a major online business with a new High Street presence, includes Amazon?
Complementary omni-channel marketing recognises that there’s a role for bricks and mortar in an innovative ecommerce strategy. Those who are leading the way have found that in-store transactions can be double the value of online purchases. Trend-setting eye-wear business Warby Parker started online in 2010 and now has 20 stores generating brand awareness and driving more traffic online. For some businesses, such as Bonobos, customers choose in-store and place their orders online for home delivery.
Apple has provided e-receipts for in-store purchases for quite a while. Following successful regional trials in the UK it’s now a growing favourite with a number of store chains. Some 45% of customers say they would like an e-receipt, but few receive them. Almost two-thirds of customers say they would be happy to receive related information with their e-receipt such as sales, promotions and loyalty programmes. This is a great example of cross-over between the in-store and online marketing to improve the customer’s experience.
Turning visitors into customers
The first visit to an ecommerce website is a bit of a ‘blind date’. So, what makes someone stay and buy, and then come back to buy again on the all-important second date?
Understanding what people are looking for and providing it is, of course, top of the list. You need to stay ahead of your competition and keep your site fresh, interesting and attractive. A strategic, integrated, planned and thoroughly tested approach to conversion optimisation will be essential for ambitious online businesses this year.
With the rich features in Magento 2, developers have freedom to optimise their ecommerce website’s conversion rate with ease and take business to the next level. If you haven’t already considered it as an option we recommend that you do this year. Contact us for expert advice.