It’s very nearly Christmas which means that either you’re in the middle of the biggest season of your year, you’re prepping up for the post-seasonal sales (biggest season of your year) or you’re just plain too tired from the huge year that’s just coming to a close and you’re looking forward to a well-earned rest (did you just roll your eyes at the thought of resting now – yep us too). Anyhoo, wherever you are in your year, chances are you know you can’t swing a cat without bumping into a ‘trends’ article you should read on the internet, you just don’t have time to read them all and figure out which ones are likely to benefit your business the most for 2020. But fear not, we’ve searched far and wide to bring you a thoughtfully curated list of e-commerce trends for 2020 you might want to consider. Let’s start with the most obvious one.

List of e-commerce trends for 2020


1 – Social media continues its rise…but

As for e-commerce trends for 2020, yes, Facebook, Insta and Twitter are still good places to be, but both FB and Twitter are currently still in user decline (from their highs in 2017) – especially for younger audiences like Gen Y and Gen Z – who are flocking to Insta, TikTok and Pinterest among others. So what does that mean for you? Know your customers and know which social channels they hang out on. 2019 Absolunet research highlights the role social plays in e-commerce with almost 90% of e-commerce shoppers using social media to help them make their purchase decision and a whopping 1:3 wanting to make purchases directly through social media platforms. What does that mean for you? You need to make sure you’ve integrated purchasing platforms into your social as much as is humanly possible. It might require a bit of a rejig over the break or early in the new year, but best get onto that asap. Messaging apps as sales tools are on the rise with Messenger Lead Ads (FB) and Business catalogue (WhatsApp) evolving in a way that lets customers connect with businesses relevant to them. Early days, but watch that space.

2 – Mobile-first website design

Once upon a time, it was enough to have a mobile responsive website. Not anymore – damn you social media!! In 2020 customers shop via their mobiles often whilst browsing social media (see above). So imagine their disappointment if the experience your brand gives them on Instagram is so much better than they get from your actual site – where they’re spending their hard-earned. Hmmm – what to do? Make sure that you’re optimising your site to ensure maximum usability on all mobile devices – ie: it displays/feels like an iOS app on Apple devices and an Android app on an Android device. It limits the friction users feel when moving between social and site. You will need to invest in PWA (progressive web app) technology and make sure speed, easy navigation and top-notch functionality are key. Check out this article too on other website problems you might want to deal with aside from mobile responsiveness. 

3 – Video!

The list of e-commerce trends for 2020 won’t be complete without mentioning video or AR. And we’re not talking about low-quality videos here. Videos have to be well-produced, they need to, pronto! To do so, there are a host of tools already available, however, we’re pretty excited about the entry of design app Canva adding video to its mix in 2020.

4 – Personalisation

Gone (or at least going) are the days when a one size site fit everyone. The 2020s and beyond will see an increasing demand for personalisation. Ie: you recognise the customer when they return, show them things that are likely to be of interest to them (as opposed to anyone). This trend is all about getting up close and personal with your customers and their data (but not in a creepy way – make sure you keep it classy).

5 – IoT commerce

Once just a fantasy, being able to buy a lime green waterproof sweater from your car whilst 4x4ing (or whilst eyeball deep gardening or lounging on the beach) using just your voice, is now a reality and will continue well into the future. The key here for you, as an e-commerce business owner, is to ensure that you’re ready to leverage as many connection touchpoints as you can – for 2020 start with making sure you’ve optimised for voice search.

6 – Re-commerce (or the Internet of 2nd hand things)

Think op shops – just more glamorous, on the internet and not necessarily supporting charity. In keeping with everyone thinking about creating a smaller eco-footprint and longer-lasting fashion (and everything else), the second-hand market is set to double in the next 4-5 years and we’re talking tens of billions of dollars. So what does that mean for you? Well, first is your product a candidate for a resale market? Two will your customers buy pre-loved from you? How will you reimburse customers returning items to you and what channels are available for your re-commerce initiatives (FB marketplace is an obvious one, but it may or may not work for you).

7 – Click and collect fulfilment option

This is the last of the e-commerce trends for 2020 that we’ve curated especially for you. Yep, sometimes people want your product now (as in in the next 10 mins) and they’re prepared to travel to pick it up. Not wait for tomorrow or the next day. What they’re really after is a buy now, pick up in store or office. Why? Because it guarantees their purchase will be there waiting when they’re ready; it’s often much quicker than regular post – especially at busy times of the year, reduces friction when receiving orders and frankly, maybe they’ve just not be organised enough to buy a present for their nephew’s birthday party being held this afternoon and another e-voucher won’t cut it. You just don’t know. What that might mean for you is thinking about how you can better facilitate whatever fulfilment process works best for them.

Of course, if your fulfilment process isn’t quite what you’d like it to be to keep your customers delighted every time they interact with you and you’d like to improve that in 2020, we’d love to chat further. You can get in touch through the form below.

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