5 Ecommerce Challenges for 2020

Many ecommerce merchants are enjoying a strong holiday selling season even as some brick-and-mortar shops are visiting relatively flat Christmas sales. To ensure continued growth and success, Internet retailers might want to challenge their companies to improve in a number of areas in 2020.

Ecommerce and mobile-based ecommerce have grown significantly this season. Cyber Monday ecommerce sales, for instance, reached $1.735 billion originating from desktop and notebook devices, according to comScore. Even Black Friday, which is better known for brick-and-mortar retail sales, saw online spending reach $1.198 billion in america, again according to comScore. Mobile online spending might also have increased, as some reports indicate that mobile-based website traffic was up 55 percent around Thanksgiving.

Retailers, however, shouldn’t rest on their existing success, but instead should challenge their companies to improve in a number of areas, including free shipping offers, mobile optimization, personalization, data driven decision making, and cross channel sales.

Offer Free, Two-Day Shipping

The first challenge for online sellers in 2020 is to find ways to provide free, expedited transport to most or all shoppers. Although it’s likely there will still be minimum purchase and maximum weight requirements and limitations, online shoppers will expect faster free shipping choices thanks, in part, to the growth in services such as Amazon Prime and ShopRunner.

Amazon Prime, which costs $79.99 per year, gives shoppers complimentary two-day delivery on orders put on Amazon.com and affiliated online retailers. ShopRunner delivers a similar two-day delivery service with free returns for $79.99 per year or $8.95 a month. ShopRunner’s shipping benefits are also available for free to any American Express member. Other similar services are also likely to arrive in 2020. MasterCard and PayPal, as examples, have tried free, expedited transport offers already.

Consider order fulfillment solutions, distributed warehouses, drop shipping, or even partnerships with other retailers to help meet this challenge.

Place Mobile Design and Marketing First

In November, IBM reported that mobile devices accounted for 31 percent of U.S. ecommerce-related web traffic around the Thanksgiving holiday this year, and that 17 percent of ecommerce transactions came from tablets or smartphones. Normally, tablet users spent more than $126.00 per purchase, and smartphone users spent about $106 per purchase.

This data demonstrates that mobile ecommerce isn’t only a novelty, but instead a must have for 2020.

If an ecommerce business isn’t optimized for mobile sales, 2020 is the season to accept that challenge, such as offering a responsive design and mobile friendly payment choices.

Give Personalization and Customization

Challenge your company to eventually start offering customization and personalization both onsite and in advertising. The simplest place to start may be with email advertising. Work to section email marketing campaigns so that they address clients by name and with relevant products and offers that are based on an individual’s or group of shoppers’ stated preferences or onsite behavior.

Taking on this challenge means that the merchant’s marketing department will have to collect meaningful information about what interests shoppers and arrange separate, custom campaigns about those interests.

Personalization and customization might be a substantial competitive edge in 2020.

Use Big Data for Big Information

Big Data is a popular fad in business and in advertising. The concept can mean various things to different companies. For ecommerce, retailers must attempt to utilize Big Data to collect big info, if you will, which might be used to make better purchasing and selling decisions.

For instance consider, Weather Trends International, a Big Data company which utilizes historical weather information and innovative data processing to correctly predict weather 11 months ahead of time. This form of Big Data information could demonstrate a snowboard and ski retailer what type of winter ski resorts will have next year, and might inform purchasing and stock choices.

Similarly, knowing that a specific region will have a warmer than normal July and August might impact how, where, and if a clothing retailer promotes shorts or bikinis on Facebook or AdWords.

In 2020, locate sources of good, usable Big Data, and set the resulting big info to use.

Economy Seamlessly Across Channels, Devices

Retailers online or in physical stores will need to give shoppers a seamless, cross channel shopping experience which makes buying things simpler for the customer. To continue to enjoy success in 2020, consider offering shoppers the ability to share orders across devices, applications, as well as marketplaces.

In practice, this may indicate that things added to a cart in an internet store appear in the cart to the merchant’s iPhone app also. Or that a customer’s order history displayed on a merchant’s website shows orders placed on site and by means of a market like Amazon or eBay.

Try to think of every way that a shopper may interact with an internet store, and make all those touch points work together in 2020.