What are the top ten eCommerce software trends for the year ahead? Join us as we review the latest eCommerce software solutions, helping give you inspiration for your latest startup idea.
2021 has been the year of eCommerce, with 2.14 billion people across the world buying at least one item online this year.
What’s more, ‘the great resignation’ has encouraged people to quit their office jobs and move into the wonderful world of entrepreneurship and online retail. In America, it’s estimated that the number of self-employed workers has grown by half a million since the pandemic began.
What does this mean for your startup? It means that if you offer an eCommerce software solution, you may find a lot of brand new customers that want to use your product for their own business.
In this article, we will look at ten of the top eCommerce shop software trends for 2022, to help inspire you if you are thinking of potential startup ideas.
Are you looking for eCommerce platforms to help your retail startup grow? Then, you might be interested in our article about the top ten platforms for startups in 2022.
Top 10 eCommerce trends in 2022
- Mobile apps for shopping
- Cryptocurrency and blockchain
- Voice shopping
- Shopping on social media
- VR and AR
- Automated tools and AI
- Buy now, pay later
- Real-time analytic data
- Headless eCommerce
- Omnichannel shopping
1. Mobile apps for shopping
Mobile eCommerce apps are more popular with shoppers than ever before, with nearly 50% of stores having a smartphone app on either Android or IOS.
Customer experience is king when it comes to eCommerce, and mobile apps make it easier than ever before for customers to buy at a time and place convenient to them.
Not only this, but eCommerce startups can take advantage of a phone’s notification system. A push notification can pop up with all the latest product launches and deals, as well as use GPS to track the location of purchases.
For a great example of a mobile eCommerce software solutions, take home décor business Overstock. The app offers an augmented reality (AR) feature that lets you see how furniture will look in your home and lets you purchase there and then. We’ll look at AR eCommerce software solutions a little later in this article.
Overstock also provides flash deals based on your search history, giving you an experience that is customized specifically to your needs.
2. Cryptocurrency and blockchain
Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin… there are now over 10,000 types of cryptocurrencies available to buy!
No longer just a fad, many eCommerce stores are now accepting cryptocurrency as legal tender, with stores like Shopify, Microsoft, and Lush all taking this alternative form of cash.
A benefit of eCommerce stores accepting cryptocurrency is that there is no need for currency conversions. This can make life easier for customers as they don’t have to worry about paying in another currency. Customers also do not need a bank account to use cryptocurrency, allowing startups to sell to a wider range of prospective shoppers.
Blockchain, the technology behind cryptocurrency, is on-trend at the moment too. Think of blockchain as a digital record of cryptocurrency transactions made across the internet. The data cannot be altered, making cryptocurrency values harder to manipulate, and is recorded securely, so information cannot be hacked.
3. Voice shopping
Voice shopping is the future of eCommerce, with one in five people saying they have made at least one voice purchase.
Most people have the option of voice shopping now, whether through a virtual assistant on their phone or a smart speaker in their home or office space.
Whether they’re shopping for clothes, electronics, food, or beauty items, more and more people are buying online using the power of their voice. Voice shopping is convenient and means customers can buy products as and when they need them, for example, if they have just found out they have run out of something.
Over 2022, startups offering assistance to help businesses optimize their websites for voice search, as well as other voice-activated services, will reap the benefits.
4. Shopping on social media
Buying through a website is not the only way people can acquire products. Savvy shoppers can also purchase goods through a business’s social media profiles.
This means that promoting and selling products through social media platforms, whether organically or through ads, is an excellent marketing strategy for eCommerce businesses large and small.
Influencer marketing is also bigger than ever. Influencer marketing is when businesses work with individuals with a loyal following on social media, receiving endorsements and product mentions in exchange for a financial reward.
While many people think of the Kardashians and Cristiano Ronaldo when it comes to influencer marketing, the truth is anyone can be an influencer if they have a dedicated social media following.
5. VR and AR
Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) have been around for decades, but they have only recently started to be used in the world of eCommerce. This is especially true now that technology is getting cheaper. A decade ago, people would have paid thousands of dollars for a top-of-the-line VR headset; now they can create their own viewer out of cardboard for free!
Businesses are using VR to showcase their wares to customers who may not be able to visit their real-life showrooms. Customers can not only view products from all angles but click on items to find out more information and to buy.
Customers can use AR to visualize how furniture and new paint colors will look in their home, or how a new lipstick or pair of sunglasses will look on them.
6. Automated tools and AI
Artificial intelligence (AI for short – not to be confused with AR) is all about using computers to do tasks traditionally carried out by humans. As far as eCommerce software solutions go, AI can be used to send automatic emails, create website copy and run chatbots that answer customers’ most commonly asked questions.
AI can be a great boon for businesses in the eCommerce industry. Not only does it use data to recommend products to the right target audiences, but it helps save time carrying out repetitive tasks. Nearly one in three sales and marketing teams claim to have seen up to a 10% increase in revenue after using AI.
7. Buy now, pay later
‘Buy now pay later (BNPL) has always been around in the eCommerce world in some shape or form. However, its use exploded over the pandemic, with customers using it to buy treats to make themselves feel better.
With BNPL, customers buy goods on credit and pay for them later – either through regular installments or after an interest-free period. This entices customers to buy, even if they don’t have the money in their account.
Many eCommerce platforms provide this functionality through providers like Klarna, Clearpay, and Laybuy. Even banks are starting to offer BNPL to customers, with Monzo offering ‘Flex’ to over five million customers in the UK.
While BNPL is controversial and is splitting opinion, it is not going away anytime soon, with eCommerce retailers like Asos, Boohoo, Footasylum and Nike all offering BNPL payment options.
8. Real-time analytic data
When you run an eCommerce site, analytics data is incredibly important. It helps you see which of your campaigns are getting the most web traffic, as well as what products customers are buying.
In 2022, real-time analytic data, where you can see customer behavior live on your site, will be more important than ever.
Why is real-time analytics so crucial to eCommerce and retail sites? They can help you paint a clearer picture of your customers and the actions they take, meaning you can make better business decisions. Not only this, but if a problem occurs, you can respond to it proactively, improving customer trust and saving time and money.
According to Gartner, over half of the new business systems in 2022 will use real-time data and continuous intelligence to improve decision-making.
Startups can take advantage of this demand for real-time data in several ways. They can offer eCommerce software solutions that can collect, analyze or report on this data, as well as an infrastructure to support data gathering.
9. Headless eCommerce
Headless eCommerce software solutions are growing in popularity as they provide more flexibility and allow businesses to sell in different ways.
What is headless eCommerce? Headless eCommerce is when the frontend of the eCommerce platform (also known as the ‘head) is decoupled from the backend functionality of the platform. This means that the head can be updated and changed regularly, without affecting the backend.
While headless eCommerce may take a little longer to set up, it means retailers can provide a faster, more customized service to customers. For example, eCommerce sites that sell internationally can create regional variants of web pages and apps, and have the headless eCommerce platform display the relevant content depending on where the customer is located.
10. Omnichannel shopping
Last but not least, 2022 will see a decisive shift from customers shopping on one platform to shopping on multiple platforms.
Imagine that a customer is in one of your brick and mortar stores, and sees a pair of shoes they like. They go on social media to look at other customers wearing the shoes, and then on your website to see what assorted colors the shoes come in. They finally go back to your store to buy the shoes.
You need to make sure that the customer experience is high-quality and uniform across all platforms your business utilizes. According to Gladly, over 70% of customers want a consistent experience across all channels they use, but only 30% say they actually get one.
In conclusion: how will you offer eCommerce software solutions in 2022?
We hope that this short guide has given you insight into how you can provide software solutions to eCommerce startups. From providing alternative payment gateways to designing high-quality mobile shopping apps, there is a lot you can do to empower other businesses.
If you’re not sure what software trends to prioritize, we recommend carrying out market research first.
Look at what is popular in your chosen industry, what your competitors are doing, and what your target audience wants to see.
Once you have done this, it’s essential to launch quickly to build on the momentum and get one step ahead of your competitors. The lean startup methodology can be a great way to help you get your startup to market as quickly as possible.
Similarly, if you operate an eCommerce business and are looking for the latest eCommerce software trends, this article will have explained what will be popular in 2022 and beyond. Offering additional value to prospective shoppers can make all the difference between making a sale and missing out.
What eCommerce software technology will you utilize on your site in the year ahead?
Need a little extra help getting your eCommerce software solution off the ground? You are Launched is here to help
If you’re considering developing eCommerce store software in 2022 but aren’t sure where to begin, we can help you launch your brand new solution.
We have been working with startups since 2014, helping them plan, get funding, and launch to the right target audiences
Contact us today and see how we can help you in your eCommerce shop software journey.