Looking Forward: the future of e-commerce in 2021
In the year of the Covid-19 pandemic, e-commerce assumed an essential role in the recovery of trade and consumption, guiding the transformation of sales strategies and interaction with consumers.
The numbers of e-commerce in Italy
The pandemic has revolutionized the e-commerce sector in Italy by bringing important changes. Online purchases are worth 30.6 billion euros, with an increase in product purchases (+ 31%) and a sharp decline in services (-47%), due to the crisis that has hit the tourism and transport sector.
The most mature sectors in the field of online shopping (IT and electronics, Clothing, Publishing) are growing at a sustained rate, while those that are giving the greatest push are the emerging sectors, with very high growth rates: Food & Grocery which generates 2,7 billion euros (+70% compared to 2019) and Furniture and home living, with a turnover of 2.4 billion euros (+37% compared to 2019).
6 trends and future predictions for e-commerce
Here are some of the most important ecommerce trends that best describe the future of online shopping for 2021.
Online Sales become more popular
E-commerce is the most popular online business and will continue to grow exponentially. This popularity stems from the ease and comfort offered by online shopping, which pushes more and more people to cut down on commuting to malls and shop from home.
Today's websites are more user-friendly and offer customers a better browsing experience. Purchasing processes have also improved significantly, allowing customers to easily find and choose the items they want and have multiple payment options.
Compared to the past, therefore, consumer confidence in online shopping has increased and this favors the growth of e-commerce.
Growth of Mobile Shopping
The increase in smartphone purchases is an increasingly relevant trend for the e-commerce market. By the end of 2021, mobile sales are projected to increase by 15%, representing 73% of all online purchases.
The spread of smartphones has contributed to the increase in online shopping. In fact, in recent years, more and more people have used mobile devices, not only to make purchases, but also to inquire and evaluate products before concluding the purchase.
Consumers are more used to being able to shop at any time and from any channel. They can easily switch between online and offline, gathering information, reading reviews and comparing physical store prices with those offered by marketplaces. In fact, 46.7% of all online searches start on marketplaces such as Amazon, eBay, Etsy and Alibaba, while 37% of users use social media, in particular Facebook and Instagram, to search for products and brands.
E-commerce companies, which until now had neglected this business model due to management difficulties, will necessarily have to invest in the development of their platforms to integrate all sales channels.
Multichannel e-commerce solutions will be a driving force for increasing your visibility, reaching new audiences and boosting sales.
Social Media Shopping
Born with the aim of connecting people, today social media has evolved as a marketing tool at the service of companies.
Facebook and Instagram have allowed companies to expand their audience and now they favor shopping through a series of dedicated features. They are in fact equipped with "purchase buttons" and offer the possibility of interfacing with e-commerce, allowing users to make purchases through social media.
The influence of social media on users is constantly growing and this is why every e-commerce company should invest in social media marketing strategies.
Personalized Shopping Experience
Consumers expect customized solutions that can simplify and improve the entire shopping experience.
From the possibility of having installment payments to delivery in the shortest possible time, without forgetting the role of packaging: customized, sustainable and easily reusable packaging in case of return can influence sales and contribute to making a brand recognizable, increasing its value.
Companies are also called upon to offer their customers an efficient customer care service that is always available, able to respond to any type of question and from any channel.
The renewed focus on environmental sustainability has significantly increased the demand for ecological products and affects online sales.
Consumers appear to be conditioned by the environmental concerns of recent years and buy more easily from companies that observe environmentally friendly practices and offer zero impact services.
The growth of the Millennial market also contributes to green consumerism, as it is a generation attentive to sustainability and the environmental impact of their choices.
The importance of the latest e-commerce trends
The new trends in e-commerce are aimed at drawing a clear picture of what the future holds for online shopping. Given the constantly evolving context, it is essential for companies to stay up to date and define a growth strategy based on e-commerce, both for the important benefits it can bring to the business and to avoid major crises and pandemics, such as the one experienced in 2020, may interrupt or even cause the closure of their business.
If you need advice for the development of your e-commerce platform or to take advantage of our digital marketing services, contact us!