In 2019, Amazon.com will be 25 years old. It is remarkable to think of the impact the company has made on the world in the past quarter century.
While establishing its own dominance, Amazon has taken other ecommerce sites along for the ride. With so many great features on offer from ecommerce outfits, it is easy to think it is an established industry. But ecommerce is still in its early stages, with much more to offer.
What does the future hold for ecommerce in 2019 and beyond?
Ecommerce Sites at 12% of Retail
It is easy to think that ecommerce has taken over the world where shopping is concerned. But the 2018 figures show that ecommerce is only 11.9% of all global retail sales. Brick and mortar is still the king.
An interesting development is the opening of brick and mortar stores by some ecommerce outfits. Amazon is a prime example, with the company looking into “checkout free” grocery stores.
Brick and mortar is also borrowing some tricks from ecommerce, by offering price matching, free fast delivery and other features that make life easier for customers.
While some believe that ecommerce gaining the majority of sales is inevitable, it is a long road ahead and by no means a guarantee.
It may have been one of the worst kept secrets, but it is still proving vital to the success of major ecommerce outfits: marketing automation. Many companies worked on their own tools for automation, with mixed success.
Now there are mainstream tools that any ecommerce outfit can use to automate parts of the marketing process.
Shopify Flow, Launchpad and Shopify Scripts are three programs that allow for the automation of processes that will show ads, offer discounts and provide other personalized information to customers as they are browsing the store, looking at different items and checking out.
How Does Mobile Factor Into Ecommerce Transactions?
Mobile has already taken over from desktop when it comes to some ecommerce outfits. For instance, the 2017 Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales in the United States saw 64% of sales coming from mobile, with 36% from desktop. This data arrives from Shopify.
It is why many site owners are pushing to further optimize their mobile sites, as they want to make the experience seamless for customers. And features such as Shopify Pay, which makes it easier for customers to checkout, will only enhance the mobile ecommerce experience.
Untapped Markets for Ecommerce
McKinsey believes that 1.4 billion additional people will be in the middle class by 2020. Most of these new numbers will come from Asia Pacific, which is seeing a lot of economic growth.
Retailers who can enter these markets now will have a massive advantage over late entrants. It is even more complicated in Asia, with many countries having strict constraints, regulations and security measures that ecommerce outfits must get through before they can begin selling to that population online.
Ecommerce outfits that can overcome those challenges and grab part of the emerging markets will find sustained success in the coming decade.