Trendwatch: What to expect for eCommerce in 2020

inke packaging — November 1, 2019

With the dawn of a new decade not far away, it’s probably time to start giving some thought to how the online retail landscape is set to shift. eCommerce is built on convenience, but convenience alone will not send your products flying off the virtual shelf.

It’s all about experience

Customer experience is at the forefront of all modes of retail. In 2020, more eCommerce stores are set to expand their online offerings to the experiential brick and mortar retail space. What does this mean? Think in-store activations, seamless transition for online shopping with click and collect, and more digital-first options on the shop floor. We’re also set to see a lot more digitally-native brands available in stores, whether that be through wholesale or standalone shop openings.

eCommerce becomes Recommerce

The rise in sustainability efforts is seeing more and more shoppers turning to online consignment, or ‘reCommerce’. Online marketplaces like Depop and Poshmark give users the ability to buy and sell pre-loved, secondhand clothing. Recommerce opens up the world of online shopping to those at a lower income bracket – largely Gen Z shoppers whose chief concern is also remaining as sustainable as possible. Thredup predicts the secondhand resale market will be worth $10 billion in 2020.

Convenient, timely fulfilment

The presence of online giant Amazon, and smaller local retailers like The Iconic in the Australian market have facilitated a shift in consumers’ need for convenience and promptness where delivery times are involved. Demand for fast fulfilment is not likely to go anywhere in 2020, if anything it’s set to only grow. What does this mean for online retailers? Partnerships with Third-party Logistics providers, offering free express shipping and returns, and even same-day metro delivery are the best investments. Teaming online with brick and mortar stores to offer same-day click and collect and in-store returns will also see eCommerce stores do better in 2020.

Content is key

Content marketing is one of the top ways to help your customer see how your product can fit into their life. Big in 2020 will be repurposing content. This means making the same concepts available in different media, so different audience segments can consume it in their preferred ways. By delivering information in the format that works best for them, you increase your chance of customers actively engaging with it.

Subscription stays

The subscription model marries brand loyalty and convenience, and has facilitated the rise of hundreds of digitally-native, direct to consumer brands. There’s no stopping the subscription train in 2020, and with good reason. Not only does the model provide a regular, personal experience for customers, it also benefits brands through streamlined purchase behaviour and more reliable forecasting.

Right on hue

Off the back of Classic Blue being named Pantone’s colour of the year in the design space, the palettes to watch will be nature-inspired. Think plenty of greens, blues and pared-back tonal shades of cream and light brown. Contrasting these calming shades will be bright, bold, in-your-face palettes of clashing colours like red and light pink or neon pink with powder blue. The best way to embrace these colour trends is combining bold, contrasting colours and offsetting them with neutral tones to give the eyes a rest.

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