The way e-commerce clients buy changes with the evolution of technology and we can see a growing number of customers with a buy-now mindset. With around-the-clock shopping access and all technologies that roll out in stores, consumer expectations shift.
E-commerce continues to grow at a global level, which shouldn’t be surprising, as the landscape isn’t restricted by geography. According to the RIS News survey, 83% of US online consumers now shop online more than five years ago. Moreover, the European Ecommerce Report of 2018 shows that in 2017 e-commerce in Europe was worth €534 billion and is expected to grow to €602 in 2018.
Now we can see that customer expectations are changing rapidly so the technologies and solutions adopted by retailers need to meet increased consumers demands. A number of solutions that took the whole buying experience to the next level have reinvented commerce.
Growing need for convenience
Think about it this way: Why choose to queue up at the checkout in a brick and mortar store, while you can simply browse products online, even try clothes on virtually, add them to the cart, and go through a checkout in minutes? Then, you get the items directly to you, sometimes on the same day.
Moreover, think about how smartphones have become a major part of e-commerce transactions. Online consumers use their devices to do research on the products before they buy anything. When they decide to buy, they want to pay in seconds and expect the items being delivered as soon as possible.
This also comes with a growing need for subscription services that make customers receive items straight to their house on a regular basis, without having to remember about making the purchase.
Going further, we can mention smart objects, such as fridges that are able to monitor the products inside and automatically order the items that are about to run out. Keeping this in mind, merchants need to find a way to connect with customers at the right time, in the right place.
With technological advances, online shopping and buying through smart devices went into mainstream naturally. An array of options made consumers compare the prices in stores around the world from the comfort of their couch. So, retailers shouldn’t be surprised that nowadays consumers expect shopping to be as easy as touching a button.
Keep in mind that customers also expect real-time support, so online companies should think about implementing chatbots. This can help companies to better communicate with their clients, saving time for both of them. The automation makes it quicker and easier to answer the most frequent questions, it also enhances user experience but only when done right.
The Gartner predicts that by 2020, 85% of customer interactions will be managed by AI. When the technology is used the right way, it creates plenty of scenarios for a customized experience, and the conversion goes through improvement as well. In all, rich data on customer behavior makes retailers offer products or services that match their clients’ needs.
We all know that people think and act differently according to what they can find in social media, and it also applies to their buying behaviors. The thing is that shoppers use multiple channels to make a decision, as they have access to more solutions than ever before.
Technology also impacts spending habits and changes the way customers make their shopping decisions. Analyzing customers behavior, technology helps them make quicker purchasing decisions, however, some of them are rash.
Checkout process that doesn’t hinder conversion
Online customers engage with brands in different ways than several years ago and technological shifts have rewritten the shopping experience. Retailers can take advantage of the evolving landscape but only when they deliver customer-oriented services that answer rising demands and expectations. And, at the same time, assure customers that their sensitive data is safe during checkout.
The thing is to design interfaces that people know how to use from the very beginning, without unnecessary complexity. When going through the process takes too much work, customers simply give up.
Payment options should also be adapted to customer habits. The changes in technology made payment companies offer more choices for online consumers to let them pay without any effort. In result, they can go smoothly through a one-click checkout that gives them convenience and personalized experience. In this business every second counts.
E-commerce owners need to find a balance between reaching out and attracting new customers while also creating useful solutions based on existing customer relationships. Simply put, people want to have a choice. Hence, merchants simply need to know what’s the most preferred way to pay for their customers and provide them with what they want. So, again, it’s a retailers responsibility to create an uninterrupted experience on every step in their online stores.
People now have a short attention span that is about 5 to 8 seconds, so it’s getting really complicated for merchants to catch customers interest and make them willing to buy. Especially today, when consumer behavior is driven by technology changes and based on increased expectations of convenience.
E-commerce is highly competitive and price-sensitive, so retailers that want to stay on top of the market need to implement new solutions that fill in the gap. Merchants need to do everything in their power to remove the complexity and create user experience clear of clutter.
We can agree that technology will continue to evolve, which can influence consumer habits on a bigger scale. WIth AI, companies can have a better use of data than ever before, so, when used properly, this can help them improve the purchasing experience.