It’s no secret that this year hasn’t gone as planned. COVID-19 brought with it chaos and destruction, changing the way we live our lives forever, in particular how we shop.
Increased social distancing measures have forced people online more than ever before. In fact, online shopping has increased by 43% in September alone.
Looking back on 2020, the ecommerce businesses who have come out on top are those who have adopted an omnichannel approach. And though we don’t know for certain what 2021 holds, it’s clear that omnichannel is here to stay.
To help you plan for 2021 as much as possible, we’ve rounded up a list of predictions from retail experts on which omnichannel trends you need to look out for. Here’s what they said…
Shoppable Video Content
In 2018, Instagram introduced shoppable photo posts. This allowed ecommerce brands to sell their products on the platform. Shoppable video content allows customers to shop in exactly the same way. When a customer watches a video they can click on the price tag and be redirected to a brand’s online store.
Besides Instagram, many other social platforms have jumped the bandwagon of shoppable video content. For example, TikTok has recently announced a new partnership with Shopify, so more brands can continue to reach millennial and Gen Z audiences.
Shoppable videos are predicted to gain significant popularity in 2021 and if you want to stay ahead of the curve, you must include them in your 2021 strategy.
In need of some inspiration?
The international beauty brand, Maybelline has taken the omnichannel trend to the next level, giving its Instagram followers the ultimate shopping experience with shoppable video and images.
Selling Through Live Videos
Customers watch live videos 3x longer than other video content and with 85% of customers admitting they’re more likely to purchase after watching a product video - it’s a trend you don’t want to miss out on.
At the start of 2020, live streaming gained momentum across the landscape of ecommerce as more and more D2C brands recognised its marketing power.
Streaming live is a brilliant way to immediately connect with your customers and bring your products to life in realtime. And when you add influencers to the mix things can really heat up - allowing you to get in front of different audience segments.
As the demand for live streaming continues to rise, other platforms like Linkedin, Twitter and Twitch have had to adapt and introduce Live features. So if you want your brand to stay relevant in 2021, live video is the way to go.
The Move From Me To Us
There’s no getting away from the psychological impact of COVID-19. Some people have gone months to almost a year without seeing their friends or family. Consequently, more than ever people are craving a connection when they’re forced to be physically distant.
In 2021, consumers will look to their favourite brands for a sense of community and will be attracted to those that offer authenticity and honesty.
Some brands are already way ahead of this trend - incorporating it within their marketing strategy in 2020. For example, Soko Glam founder Charlotte Cho, tells the brand’s Instagram followers about her favourite Korean dramas, engaging in conversion and asking for recommendations. Not only does this humanise the brand it also strengthens customer relationships in a way that feels authentic and meaningful.
Apply Customer Data Offline
The chances are you’re already leveraging some data to understand your customers and maximise conversions, so why not apply this to other sales channels?
73% of customers use multiple channels during the buying process, so be sure to apply customer data. In fact, most customers prefer an omnichannel experience, so make sure you’re tracking your customer behaviour.
User research, analytics and social listening can all be used in combination to get under the skin of your audience. Building a deep-data picture will enable you to keep up with ever-evolving trends and engage with your customers more effectively.
Get Prepared For 2021
Q1 is almost here, so you need to start planning now if you want to hit the ground running in 2021.
There will always be things you can’t prepare for, but we hope by shining a spotlight on a few trends and insights it will go some way in helping you remain ahead of the curve.
But if you still need more advice, our team of ecommerce experts are available. Get in touch today and see the difference we can make to your online business.