7 technologies that are shaping e-commerce in 2022
Steve Jobs introduced the world’s first smartphone as we know it (although IBM developed SPCs at least 15 years ago) at the Macworld conference. No one at the time could predict the pervasive impact of these wearable devices on our everyday lives.
From a handful of apps to an app for everything, we’ve come a long way. But the most important aspect is how it has changed the way we find and buy things online. Mobile commerce is the natural evolution of e-commerce, both identical and dissimilar in their own way.
Mobile commerce (or simply mcommerce) has seen tremendous growth over the past decade. According to Statista, e-commerce accounts for 53% of total e-commerce revenue this year. The same number hovered around 34% in 2017. In four years, the percentage share of e-commerce has increased by 60%.
Consumers are exhibiting a major shift in their buying behavior as mobile apps have become more intuitive and much easier to buy.
These apps are a better way to engage and promote new products or offers. They offer a smooth and seamless shopping experience with a personalized touch. It has become a necessity, even for the smallest players, to grow their business, increase their income and build trust.
The e-commerce landscape is the hotspot of cutting-edge technologies, from codeless mobile application platforms to augmented reality.
Let’s take a look at seven technologies that are pushing the boundaries of e-commerce.
Progressive web apps
Slow load times are the bane of online businesses. Nothing turns people off than a page that takes forever to load. One in two people will leave a web page that has not fully loaded in three seconds.
Combined with the waning patience of the average shopper and the inability of mobile sites to show up quickly, it’s a challenge for brands to convert site visitors. It’s here that Progressive web apps (PWA) comes into the picture.
PWAs are a cross between mobile apps and mobile sites to keep things simple. They look like an app, but you don’t need to download them. They offer offline usability and push notifications like an app, but rely on web technologies.
PWAs are at least 75% faster than a traditional site and offer more reliability.
There are several tools like Easy PWA and Ampify that help you build progressive web apps without any coding.
Live video commerce
Live selling (or live video trading) has grown in popularity during the pandemic. It offered a whole different way of interacting with customers. The direct selling market in the United States will reach almost $ 11 billion by the end of 2021. And let’s not even start with China, where the technology accounts for nearly $ 66 billion in sales.
Direct selling combines the elements of e-commerce and live streaming. Sellers showcase their product through the feed, answer questions in real time, and encourage viewers to purchase products. This helps provide the brand experience and instills confidence in buyers when it comes to fit, quality and authenticity.
Low-code / no-code mobile application generators
Low-code and no-code applications have grown in popularity during the second half of the last decade. Tools like Appian and Outsystems have empowered the citizen developer. But very few SaaS companies have been able to translate the codeless mechanism into native iOS and Android apps.
The potential of these apps is immense as the retail landscape shifts to mcommerce. Less than one percent of all e-commerce stores in the world have a mobile app. There is plenty of room for these low-code, no-code applications to grow exponentially.
Push notifications triggered by behavior
While most push notifications are sent manually, automated behavior-triggered notifications have a head start.
Behavioral triggers occur when your users take specific actions (or inaction in some cases) that signal a flare that may lead to a favorable action. Take abandoned carts for example.
A message like this when a user leaves without paying can allow them to complete the purchase. There are several creative ways to use them to send the right message to the right people at the right time.
You can send welcome messages to new users, a boost to people who haven’t made a purchase for a while. Really, the sky is the limit here.
Alexa! Add coffee to my basket.
Voice search is expected to reach $ 40 billion in sales by 2022. Almost 43% of people who own voice-activated devices use voice search to purchase products. The increase in voice search is a game-changer for most businesses. It’s a super fast and convenient way to buy things.
Buyers can use voice to search for items, choose their sizes and colors, add items to their cart, and complete the checkout process. Any business that ignores this emerging technology is sure to miss out on huge revenue gains.
One of the biggest challenges with ecommerce conversions is that the buyer has to imagine how the product would fit. Let’s say you buy a table, you would ideally imagine what it would look like in your home office. With augmented reality built into your store, you can actually see that, instead of imagining it.
AR uses the features of the app to create an augmented interpretation of the real world. It can offer additional stimuli such as visuals and sounds, providing additional information in attractive ways.
For example, the technician uses the camera function through an app. Lenskart has implemented it exceptionally well. The online eyewear brand allows users to virtually try on different designs, helping them find the one that suits them best.
According to Goldman Sachs, the technology is expected to reach $ 1.6 billion by 2025. The technology is still in its infancy with great potential for growth.
A chatbot is an AI program that engages with your buyers like a human. Most brands use chatbots to provide information, generate leads, make appointments, and answer common questions. Some of the more advanced can even personalize the conversation further.
The number one benefit of using chatbots is how efficiently they respond. They are available 24/7 and can provide instant answers to most questions.
Although they are ubiquitous on the web, they have not quite penetrated the mobile application market. Tools like Luka and Prisma are already making strides in this space.
As smartphones become more and more popular, consumers are constantly looking for new ways to engage. Having a mobile apps strategy is a must for any business, regardless of size. Any online business that wants to stay ahead of its competition should keep an eye on these technologies.
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)