Before the pandemic, retail ecommerce was gaining momentum, but since then, the growth of retail ecommerce has shot up to lightning speed.
In 2021, the global ecommerce market is believed to be around $4.89 trillion.
And that explosion in growth is expected to carry on over the next decade.
If online shopping trends in 2022 are accurate, online purchases are expected to account for 21.8% of all purchases by 2024.
As a result, it makes good business sense to keep on top of emerging ecommerce trends for 2022 and how you can leverage these to help grow your business.
Today, we’re going to look at the best retail ecommerce trends for 2022 and explain why you need to know about them.
Our list includes the most exciting tech ecommerce trends and areas such as virtual and augmented reality that look set to take online retail to a whole new level.
Retail ecommerce trends 2022
There are a wide variety of exciting trends that look set to transform the ecommerce industry in 2022.
From marketing to tech ecommerce and everything in between, here’s our pick of the best trends.
1. Marketing automation.
Many of the marketing activities we carry out for our business daily, weekly and monthly basis are recurring.
That is, we do the same thing over and over again.
So it makes sense that if we can save time and automate our marketing, we’ll improve the efficiency of our business.
Marketing automation seeks to bridge the gap between what you repeatedly do and lightens the load for you.
One of the most exciting tech ecommerce trends for 2022 is marketing automation, which will include more rounded email marketing software, advertising campaigns, and social media posting.
Ultimately, this aims to improve your efficiency while providing a more individualised experience for your customers.
2. Virtual or augmented reality experiences.
Online retailers often hear the most about the negative aspect of shopping online is that it removes the experience of human senses; touch, smell, and see.
Trying clothes on, touching products and visualising how they’ll look on us or in our homes is one of the experiences people value most when they shop.
But what if customers could enjoy a similar experience while shopping online?
That theory looks set to be tested in 2022, as savvy retailers work methodically towards making online shopping just as interactive an experience as shopping in a physical retail store.
Tech ecommerce’s most exciting developments include Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR).
Both are already offering customers unprecedented access to products and services.
For example, Amazon AR View allows customers to see what a chair, television or pretty much anything else will look like in their home thanks to Augmented Reality software.
3. Mobile purchasing will increase in popularity.
It’s crazy to think that just two decades ago, Nokia released the iconic 3310.
And back then, who would have thought that mobile would go on to dominate retail purchasing as it does in 2021?
Globally, mobile retail revenue is now valued at an eye-watering $3.5 trillion,
With Google launching its controversial algorithm update – Core Web Vitals – in 2021, the signs are ominous for online retailers; make your website mobile-friendly or face the consequences.
Ecommerce technology trends come in various guises, but one thing remains constant; more of your customers will buy products on their smartphones, and you need to cater for them.
4. Crypto/e-wallet for making purchases.
How we shop has transformed over the last decade.
No longer is it just an option between cash and credit/debit cards.
We now have unprecedented access to our money via our phones, smartwatches, cryptocurrency, banking apps and much more.
As a result, e-wallet technology looks set to become mainstream in 2022.
The e-wallet technology is the next logical step in achieving two things; making the customer experience and buying journey simple and protecting your customer’s data and security with advanced security features.
5. Improved customer experiences online.
Perhaps the best illustration of how quickly things move in ecommerce is to look at the technological advancements of the world’s most recognisable brands.
A glance at Amazon’s first website in 1995, right through to today’s Amazon website, tells you a couple of things.
Firstly, online retail has changed beyond all recognition in the last two and a half decades.
And secondly, those who constantly invest in the customer’s user experience tend to achieve the most success.
Improving your customer’s experience isn’t just an ecommerce trend for 2022; it looks set to dominate the industry for years to come.
6. Social media selling will be one of 2022’s hottest ecommerce trends.
Social Media is more diverse than ever, with the likes of TikTok, Instagram, Pinterest, and Snapchat challenging Facebook and Twitter for people’s attention.
And as more of us spend more time on our mobiles, Social Media looks set to take a slice and become one of 2022’s most crucial ecommerce technology trends.
By 2024, it’s expected that social commerce sales will top 80 billion dollars.
Social media selling is already taking place, but keep an eye on one-click selling on social media posts.
7. Omnichannel sales.
Omnichannel selling is already taking place throughout the retail industry.
We’ve dedicated an in-depth guide to omnichannel selling in retail and why it’s an online shopping trend for 2022 that you can’t ignore.
As we move into 2022, expect to see retailers strengthening their omnichannel sales strategy.
That will take the form of selling on different online and offline channels and offering customers a seamless experience regardless of how they interact with a retailer.
8. Video for marketing.
Video marketing isn’t new; YouTubers have been raking in millions with tutorials, how-to videos and review videos.
But YouTube and Facebook aside, video for marketing looks set to dominate again in 2022, with the likes of TikTok and Instagram Reels providing retailers with new ways of reaching customers.
To keep ahead of the posse, prioritise making videos that showcase your products, including how to use them, features and benefits.
9. Chatbots and interactive experiences for product recommendations.
Chatbots are still a relatively new ecommerce technology trend.
But over the next twelve months, they’ll play a massive role in personalising the customer’s ecommerce experience.
They’ll help your customers choose the right products, recommend new products and even save sales that are about to be abandoned.
And it’ll be great for your staff, too, with intuitive Chatbots taking over a lot of the FAQs and issues typically run by human customer service reps.
10. Voice search.
“Alexa, turn the lights down!”
It seems like we’ve lived with these guys for years.
While in-home assistants like the Amazon Echo and Google Nest are now firmly established, voice search is still in its infancy.
Voice search looks like being one of the most important online shopping trends in 2022.
It looks increasingly likely that the big winners of voice search in 2022 will be the online retailers who optimise their products for voice search.
11. Localised ecommerce.
Localising your ecommerce looks set to be an essential sales strategy in 2022.
With the growing influence of Google shopping, ensuring your website and product offering is tailored to specific regions and customer segments will be vital to retailers who want to target customers locally, nationally and internationally.
12. Alternative financing (flexible payment options).
Every customer has their own personal and financial circumstances and in 2022, expect to see alternative financing options available.
Instead of customers having to pay a product price and delivery, more flexible options will become increasingly popular.
That will include, for example, small monthly payments, and even a one-off annual fee for unlimited free deliveries.
13. Better loyalty programs.
Loyalty programs have evolved over the last couple of years.
Once they were as simple as “buy three products and get a fourth free”.
Now, though, loyalty programs are becoming more data-centric.
And in 2022, that emphasis on data will allow ecommerce retailers like you to customise loyalty programs to entice customers further to spend more with you.
14. Personalised marketing.
We live in the ‘big data’ era.
And the more data we collect from customers throughout their interactions with us, the more we can personalise the customer journey.
In 2022, personalised marketing will evolve to the point where it won’t be uncommon to target specific customers on their birthdays, wedding anniversaries and even based on how they feel.
15. Content marketing for retail.
As Bill Gates once said, “Content is king”.
And Bill’s right; all the major ecommerce brands have invested heavily in recent years in content marketing.
Over the next twelve months, retailers look set to invest more time into their content marketing strategies.
And if you haven’t jumped on board the content marketing train yet, now’s the time.
16. Social media influencers.
Social media influencers occasionally get a bad rap and court controversy for questionable tactics.
But there’s no doubt about it; a retailer who partners with the right influencer can achieve incredible success.
In 2022, social media influencers look set to maintain their ‘influence’, and more online retailers will be creating relationships with them to shift large numbers of clothes and products.
17. Headless ecommerce.
As more and more retailers adapt to the ecommerce world, headless ecommerce looks set to become mainstream in 2022.
As ecommerce technology trends go, headless ecommerce can transform your company.
Well, headless ecommerce allows your online store’s front end to operate separately from the back end.
So, why is that useful?
Firstly, it is flexible, which is ideal for retailers looking to continue innovating.
Secondly, you’ll enjoy dramatically improved digital, content marketing and SEO capabilities, allowing your company to reach more customers.
Finally, it allows employees with limited tech skills to be able to make tweaks with minimum hassle.
18. Subscriptions for customers.
Subscriptions are everywhere these days.
Netflix and Amazon Prime monthly direct debits, Amazon’s Subscribe and Save, Unlimited Delivery.
The list is endless.
And 2022 will be the year where ecommerce subscriptions start making inroads into the lucrative world of subscriptions.
According to HubSpot, the ecommerce subscription market will grow by nearly 70% and reach $478billion in revenue by 2025.
So, what’s the deal with subscriptions?
The main goal is to get your customers to keep coming back to you to spend their money.
And of course, it’s also a pretty convenient way for customers to reorder.
19. Ethical branding.
Climate change dominated the news in 2021 and is now firmly in the public psyche.
There has also been a spotlight on labour practices and a post-pandemic workforce keener than ever to have a job they’re passionate about.
And in 2022, it looks likely that retailers will finally catch up with the big issues of the day through ethical branding.
Retailers will prioritise and showcase how they’re ethically and climate-consciously changing how they do business.
None of these issues is going away any time soon.
So instead of getting left behind, it’s time to reassess your green credentials and how you can align best with your customer’s values.
Sometimes the most significant transformations in global economics are enforced.
While technology was steadily improving over the last decade, a global pandemic has dramatically changed retail ecommerce and how we do business.
Add in an ever-growing global movement championing climate-friendly businesses and products, and 2022 looks set to be the year that retail ecommerce makes its most significant change in decades.
Ultimately, the real focus of ecommerce technology trends is to improve customer experiences and make it easier to buy everywhere.
And for you, a loyal customer who carries out a purchase quickly and hassle-free is vital for increasing sales and profits.
Changing how you operate as a retailer takes intense planning and investment in digital infrastructure.
You’ll also need a skilled workforce capable of utilising the technologies.
However, our nineteen online retail trends to keep an eye on in 2022 don’t have to be implemented straight away.
And the good news is; some are relatively inexpensive.
You may already have laid excellent foundations with your current digital infrastructure.
Some of the trends you can implement today that won’t break the bank include:
- Marketing automation
- Mobile optimisation
- Social media selling
- Omnichannel sales
- Video marketing
- Voice search optimisation
- Alternative financing
- Content marketing
- Social media influencers
- Ethical branding
Our advice is to identify which of the nineteen trends you can action straight away as quick wins and then methodically work your way through the others.
And even better, if you choose a POS system like AirPOS, you’ll get a lot of powerful features that will help you achieve your goals.
If you’d like to learn more about retail ecommerce, contact our team of experts; we’d be happy to help you integrate your retail store and ecommerce store.