Top eCommerce Trends to Watch for in 2024
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Are you planning for the future of your online business and wondering which eCommerce trends you should watch for in 2024?
eCommerce continues to thrive like never before with no signs of slowing down. COVID-19 played a major role in the evolution of the industry, allowing people to avoid in-store shopping. However, eCommerce was growing long before the pandemic.
If you want to be a successful online seller of physical products, online courses, membership access, services, or anything else, it’s important to brush up on the changes in the eCommerce industry and anticipate what’s next.
In this article, we’ll share some of the top eCommerce trends we expect to see in 2024 and how you can leverage them to stay competitive.
1. Alternative Payment Method Options
Traditional card payments will continue to dominate as the most-used payment method for online retail. With that being said, consumers will expect to be able to complete their online purchases using newer and more convenient payment methods.
If you don’t already offer Apple Pay, Microsoft Pay, Google Pay, Cash App, Alipay, and GrabPay to your customers, you can easily begin by using WP Simple Pay, the #1 Stripe payments plugin for WordPress.
The plugin lets you easily create payment forms for your site that accept digital wallet payments to ensure that you’re not leaving out potential customers. Allowing your customers to use their preferred payment method is a great way to boost conversion rates.
In addition to digital wallets, consumers will also want the option to use local bank transfers, such as ACH Direct Debit, and Bacs Direct Debit.
Accepting direct debit payments on your site helps you reach a wider customer base and saves you on processing fees. For example, with Stripe, the processing fee for ACH Direct Debit is .08% capped at $5 per transaction, while the processing fee for digital wallet payments and cards is 2.9% + .30.
Additionally, Buy Now, Pay Later services like Affirm and Klarna will also continue to gain popularity.
Your goal should be to offer as many payment method options as you can on your site to improve customer satisfaction, boost sales, and globalize your online business.
2. Subscription-Based Services
For subscription-based businesses, you’ve probably already begun to notice that consumers now prefer services that allow them to manage their subscriptions.
Giving subscribers the flexibility to cancel their subscriptions and update their payment method has come to be expected in this day and age.
With all that being said, allowing your customers to control their subscriptions is a great way to enhance customer experience, reduce subscription churn, and build long-lasting relationships with your customers.
Using WP Simple Pay, you can easily set up user-managed subscriptions directly from the WordPress admin dashboard.
You can also use the plugin to create powerful automation that eliminates the need for expensive development services. For example, each time a new subscriber signs up for a recurring renewal, you can have them automatically added to your mailing list or even create a new user account in WordPress for them.
3. Mobile Continues to Dominate
According to recent studies, 74% of web traffic and 63% of online purchases occur via mobile devices. If you haven’t already, now is the time to work on improving the customer experience for mobile users.
First, you’ll want to ensure that your site is not only optimized and responsive for mobile viewing but also that your customers or donors can check out without too much friction.
You can test your site’s mobile-friendliness using Google Mobile-Friendly Test. Just enter your site’s URL and Google will point out errors and offer suggestions. Then consider some of these improvements:
- Make sure your checkout process is smooth on mobile. Look for ways to simplify it as much as possible. Press every button and interact with every field.
- Have friends and business partners test your site to identify any flaws.
4. Artificial Intelligence & Augmented Reality
Artificial Intelligence (A)I and Augmented Reality (AR) are powerful technologies that are helping eCommerce brands create powerful buying experiences.
Online businesses are using AI as personalization tools. The AI system examines a user’s past behavior and recommends products, services, and upsell opportunities. If you sell courses, AI can be used to display custom content based on user behavior.
AR is used almost exclusively for physical products. It lets customers see exactly how a certain product will look on them or in their homes before they buy. This gives customers a way to try products before they buy.
If these technologies sound complicated, don’t worry. Dozens of AI and AR services will plug right into your website.
5. Customer Loyalty Programs
One of the best and easiest ways to keep your customers engaged with your products and services is to create a customer loyalty program.
Customer loyalty programs can be as complex or as simple as you choose to make them. The main goal is to incentivize your customers with a reward that entices them to purchase from your business again.
The rewards your loyalty program offers can include a discount, a points system, a gift or free services, or special access to paid content on a membership site.
Personalized offers are highly effective at making your customers feel connected to your brand. These types of messages can be sent in a payment confirmation email. You can use WP Simple Pay to send personalized messages and notifications with a customer loyalty reward based on their previous purchases.
Creating one-time or unlimited discount codes is simple with WP Simple Pay. To learn more, check out our step-by-step guide on how to add a coupon code field to your WordPress payment forms.
6. Social Commerce
Social commerce lets customers research products and services and buy them directly on social media platforms.
It’s a great way to reduce checkout abandonment because it offers a streamlined and frictionless approach to finding and purchasing products without having to go to another site.
WP Simple Pay’s built-in automation functionality allows you to post content, as well as products and services, on your social media platforms automatically.
According to PYMNTS-AWS, 43% of consumers browse social media to find goods and services.
Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok have the highest conversion rates, with users purchasing products they find on these platforms frequently.
With all that being said, you’ll want to explore the different social media platforms to identify which ones are going to work best for your specific business and customer base.
Adding your feeds to your site is an excellent way to display your social media content directly on your site. It can help drive traffic to your platforms, encourage customers to engage with your business, and expand your reach. Oftentimes, social media platforms are where customers leave reviews and testimonials, which help establish your brand and provide you with the feedback you need to make any adjustments to your current offerings.
7. Omnichannel Shopping
Omnichannel shopping refers to the practice of giving shoppers a seamless and consistent experience across different channels and devices. It’s about creating a dependable online presence no matter how your customers choose to buy from you.
An omnichannel experience is important because customers tend to use multiple channels before they decide to make a purchase.
For instance, let’s say you sell online courses. You have a website, a mobile app, and you sell through marketplaces like Udemy and Thinkific. Are all of your features available on every platform? If a user could navigate your content on one platform, would they be comfortable using another? If so, you are providing an omnichannel experience.
There is no “one size fits all” when it comes to eCommerce. Not all of these trends will be right for your particular business.
Don’t feel pressured to apply all of them just because they’re popular. Use the ones that are right for your business and your customers. Never try to force a platform, marketplace, tool, or technique that doesn’t fit.
With that said, if you believe any of these trends align with your business, you’ll want to jump on them as quickly as possible before your competitors. It won’t be long before your customers expect them from you!
If you liked this article, you might also want to check out our guide on 10 Common WordPress eCommerce Mistakes to Avoid in 2024.
What are you waiting for? Get started with WP Simple Pay today!