12 Jan 2023
Retailers must pay attention to loyalty, inventory, sustainability this year.
There's no question about it, 2022 was a challenging year for retail.
Staff shortages, changing working practices, rising supplier costs and the cost of living crisis are still concerns. So what can e-commerce retailers do to weather the storm and succeed in 2023?
Writing for RetailCustomerExperience.com, Mark Hook, VP of Brightpearl, has spoken to a range of leading experts to find out what they think the e-commerce trends will be this year that every retailer should know about.
1. Loyalty: Unsurprisingly, many retailers place customer retention as their top priority this year. According to Mark,
"The chance of selling to an existing customer is 60-70%, but the chance of selling to a new prospect is typically just 5-20%."
Quite simply, if you treat people well, they'll come back again and again and again. But if the shopper's experience is bad, they won't return, which will probably result in bad online reviews.
For 2023 the key is to reward customers for loyalty. This could be through loyalty and referral programmes, free gifts or personalised discounts. Even a simple 'thank you' email can work wonders.
2. Inventory: Rising costs that have eaten into retailers' margins this is expected to intensify this year.
"I expect brands and retailers to continue to face cost and inventory pressures as a result of inflation and ongoing supply chain issues. Consumer behaviour will remain uncertain as a result of the economic backdrop and this will impact both e-commerce and physical stores alike."
Christine Russo, a content creator and writer for Deloitte
Mark Hook recommends that brands should optimise inventory and cut stock to ensure their cash flow remains healthy in 2023.
3. Sustainability: There's no getting away from it; sustainability is a hot topic and is becoming more of an influencing factor when it comes to brand loyalty, especially with younger shoppers.
"E-commerce brands should expect that their customers will become ever more aware of environmental issues and seek out those for whom they feel their values are aligned,"
IBM Futurist Andrew Busby.
"This will mean even greater transparency with regards to things such as manufacture, sourcing, provenance, workforce, materials and so forth."
4. Livestream shopping: Many online shoppers have already come into contact with the immersive and interactive experience of Livestream shopping, and this trend is expected to grow in 2023.
"There's no doubt that livestream commerce is gaining traction — whether it's broadcasting to a wide audience or connecting a single customer to a sales assistant for personal support."
Cate Trotter from Insider Trends
5. Diversified marketing: With digital advertising costs rising, retailers must look at additional marketing methods to attract new customers and retain existing ones.
2023 is likely to see retailers adopt different types of marketing, including free, paid and automated.
"Those different marketing channels will need to work together — so getting the message, brand, story, empathy, and creative right across all the channels is going to be important too," Chole Thomas, author and host of the E-Commerce Masterplan podcast.
Click here to read the full article "Experts share top 5 e-commerce trends for 2023" on RetailCustomerExperience.com's website.
If you have any questions or need help with your e-commerce strategy, get in touch, we're here to help.