It’s challenging to foresee the future, especially for the segment highly impacted by technology such as eCommerce. We asked 32 experts how they envision and anticipate the future of eCommerce to look like in the next 10-15 years, and here’s what they said.
The emergence of various forms of eCommerce marketplaces
Building and maintaining customer relationships
Personalization, AI, and virtual shopping
Automation, AI, and business intelligence
New payment options
Focus on the supply chain
The future of eCommerce – AR, AI, and machine learning
Voice commerce and eCommerce will merge
Smaller players have a chance for success
The future of eCommerce – Efficiency and Value
Drones will take over the delivery process
Advancements in quick checkout, order status pages, same-day delivery, and more
Exponentially increasing advancements in technology
Omnichannel Is about to disrupt the eCommerce industry
Personalized shopping experience
Robots will be in our homes and our workplaces
eCommerce will be immersive, personalized, and gamified
More focus on the supply chain
SEO is here to stay!
Ecommerce keeps growing regardless of the economic situation of the global market
Efficiency above all!
Cryptocurrency as a payment option
The golden age of eCommerce
COVID-19 stimulates businesses and consumers to move into the digital arena
Automation of business and eco-conscious shoppers
AR, VR, and 3D modeling
Visual impression and dynamic pricing
11 trends of future eCommerce
More jobs for drivers and fewer jobs for cashiers
Rising of M-commerce
The Founder of VendLab, an eCommerce consultancy specializing in online marketplaces (especially Amazon & eBay), cross-border trade, and eCommerce platforms predicts expansion of various forms of eCommerce marketplaces.
“Over the next few years, we will continue to see the growth of online marketplaces and other intermediaries with a smaller proportion of sales going directly to retailers’ websites. This will take a number of forms:
Director of marketing in eComEngine, foresees challenging times for building a relationship with customers and the importance of customers’ reviews.
“Building and maintaining a connection with customers will become even more critical for brands selling products online over the next several years. Brands that create products and content to drive customer loyalty will ultimately be more successful because there is no substitute for truly knowing your target audience.
Amazon is notoriously strict about buyer-seller communication, but it has been rolling out feature after feature to help brands connect to their audiences through Brand Registry. I think other eCommerce platforms will begin to offer similar features. In fact, Shopify and others already make it easy to display user-generated content. That’s a trend that is here to stay.
Customers like to hear what other customers think of a product. Many studies have shown that eCommerce shoppers trust customer reviews as much as word of mouth. And while product reviews are essential to an item’s success, additional content such as videos and images can really help highlight what’s great about a product. eCommerce channels will continue to make it easier for brands to highlight user-generated content.”
Chief Marketing Officer at WPManageNinja sees the potential in personalization and foresees virtual shopping and AI rise.
“The eCommerce industry is already focusing on convenient shopping, customer service, and personalization. Yes, it’s already a trend, but there are limitations that could be removed.
People already buy stuff when the shopping experience is personalized. In the future, we could also see a new level of personalization by identifying people’s consumption patterns. On the other hand, customer acquisition would be a difficult chore as people will slowly move towards subscription-based purchasing. For the same reason, customer service would be just as important as customer acquisition.
On the customer’s part, people will also move towards virtual shopping and AI will be involved everywhere. While customers will be able to take tours of shopping malls, AI’s will help them try apparel without even asking for measurements. Ideally, eCommerce would also move towards AI-based and superfast product delivery using drones and machine learning.”
Spokesman and Manager of Public Relations of Shopware, focuses on automation, AI, and business intelligence.
“As the usage of artificial intelligence, business intelligence, automation, etc., increases, shopping experiences will get more and more individual to each and every customer. That may lead to scenarios, where customers have totally different shopping experiences within the same shop, including different discounts, designs, products and even prices. Also, shopping will happen in a lot of different channels and on a myriad of different devices. Maybe your smart car will have its own payment methods, so you don’t have to put a step in the gas station?
For merchants, this means that they’ll need technology that allows them to be flexible and to operate on new channels with ease. And the software manufacturers will have to develop solutions that can fulfill those tasks while being very easy to use”
“We believe the future of eCommerce will focus on having an ever-expanding range of payment options — providing more opportunities for consumers to purchase goods and services.
At Jotform, we have a variety of eCommerce users and offer over 30 payment processors for them to simply collect payments through our online forms product.
But in the future, having multiple payment processors as well as other payment options like crypto or voice-activated transactions will also be essential.
We expect that collecting payments will become more critical as technology shifts and more selling and buying are done online.”
“To be successful in digital sales channels, you need much more than just an attractive and easy-to-use online store with strong marketing support.
Namely, a smoothly functioning supply chain of goods thanks to perfectly coordinated procurement processes, with real-time availability and a complete overview of assortments.
Advarics is the intuitive and complete merchandise management system for modern online retail stores.”
The founder and Head of Marketing of Kasera, a UK-based furniture comparison platform, shares his opinion.
“Having worked closely with many eCommerce brands on our comparison website, we have seen some common strategies and areas brands are investing heavily to prepare them for the future.
Augmented Reality (AR) in the shopping experience is something we have seen many brands experimenting with. We believe in the next decade this will be a fast-growing area that will eventually replace static images with live demos or experimentation of products.”
Besides that, Mohanachandran expects AI and Machine Learning to become more common in the online shopping experience.
“We live in a multi-screen society, meaning we frequently use many devices at once, such as smart-TV screens, smartphones, smartwatches, laptops, tablets, all of which have varied forms and sizes. Your marketplace website should be designed to perform well on all of them. You never know which gadget a customer may use to learn more about your business.
Unfortunately, you will not be given a second chance if your web app fails to meet the criteria of a potential consumer. Furthermore, search engines rank responsive web apps higher, making it easier to find new clients.”
The Founder of HearHere, a subscription-based audio app that shares the depth and diversity of stories – historical, cultural, natural, and mythological – hidden along the roads of America, expects voice commerce and eCommerce to merge.
“As technology becomes more integrated, the impact will cause a crossover in the methods of purchasing. One in which we are already witnessing this happen is in voice technology and eCommerce. Over 45% of Millennials already use voice technology via Alexa or Google Home to order products online. Although in its infancy, mainly re-orders through subscription models, voice commerce will eventually be a significant driver of the eCommerce market.
Soon, voice and eCommerce will include sensors to recognize when you are running low on a product. In addition, voice commerce will also impact SEO. Companies will soon learn what catch phrases or word combinations to use to drive their voice and eCommerce products and services to the top of the list. The future will continue to see these hybrid models that will eventually singularize into all-encompassing technology.”
Founder and CEO of HomeHealthcareShoppe, an online store that offers over 5,000 health and fitness-related products that reach people from all over the North American Market, sees the opportunity for small businesses to succeed.
“In 2022, we will start to see the competition stiffen on the upper echelons of the eCommerce space. Previously, the bigger market share has been divided amongst long-time eCommerce staples like eBay and Amazon, making it very hard for smaller players like us to cut through the noise and make buyers aware of our presence. With the entry of major retailers like Kroger and Costco into digital commerce, there will be more competition at the upper echelons.
Oddly, I think this could mean an opportunity for smaller players to somewhat level the playing field by sweetening up their deals a bit to differentiate themselves from the larger players.”
According to Marie Jones, Founder and Chief Executive of Organic Aromas, we expect everything to be centered around efficiency and value.
“As an eCommerce platform owner and operator for over 8 years, I see things drastically changing in the next 10 to 15 years. The future of eCommerce will solely function on efficiency and value.
Simply put, customers will embrace technology that discerns accurate value propositions instantly. E-shops will also employ technologies to deliver products and services more efficiently than ever before.”
It might seem futuristic, but Sam Santa, CEO of Zeitholz, sees significant changes in delivery processes.
“Technological innovations will characterize the future of eCommerce, bringing something new and exciting to the table. Drones are certain to take over the delivery process from the conventional shipping methods.
Drone deliveries are already being used for humanitarian purposes, but they are set to transform the way products are shipped worldwide. Once they overcome concerns about regulation or safety, they will become common not only for small cargo but also for transporting high-value products across long distances without human intervention. Drones have enormous potential to change the way we do business and live.”
Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) of FMX, predicts the massive impact of Augmented Reality in the future of eCommerce.
“AR is likely to be huge in the next few years for marketplaces since brands worldwide have already started to use it. This new feature will let customers experience what it would be like to have the things of their choice in their home, business, or anywhere else, right from their phones. Even plus-sized products, such as furniture, are included.
This visualization is helpful as it enables customers to see how a product will look in a certain location before purchasing it. Shoppers can now better comprehend if they should buy a product based on their imagination and visualization. As a result, purchases and customer interactions are faster and more satisfying.
It can help in the reduction of returns, which is one of the most significant issues with online buying.”
“I anticipate that 10-15 years from now, most transactions will be happening over the internet. Consumers are now more comfortable purchasing things online without talking to someone, especially with advancements in quick checkout, order status pages, same-day delivery, free returns, and social media integration used for customer service.
Payment methods will also continue to become more efficient since, at this point, I believe credit cards are the most used online. We will likely see mobile payments in the future and possibly even virtual reality shopping where someone can try out clothes virtually before buying them.
There may also be an increase in apps that can help with shopping needs, like price comparisons or recommendations based on past behavior.”
“The future of eCommerce is incredibly bright, thanks to the exponentially increasing advancements in technology.
The constantly changing landscape of online consumerism has created an environment where humans are always looking for new ways to spend their money on products at any given moment. New delivery services and transportation advancements mean that there will be a decrease in delivery times.
With added AI technology, the shopping experience will be become automatic for the seller but feel personalized for each person.”
The CEO of a SaaS company CocoSign, a digital signature service provider helping businesses automate their paperwork workflow through a programmable logic signing system.
“This practice is a trend that includes integrating all sales channels, both digital and brick-and-mortar. Such changes provide customers with a seamless shopping experience.
Artificial Intelligence and Augmented Reality are on the rise to promote e-commerce businesses. Online businesses utilize these technologies through AI-enabled chatbots and virtual assistants that offer a 24/7 customer service experience and a personalized shopping experience.
New payment options are being introduced to online shopping as frictionless as possible. Companies are starting to accept options like digital wallets, mobile payments, cryptocurrency, as compared to the previous norm of credit and debit cards. That reduces cart abandonment and increases total revenue.”
“The future of eCommerce is about how to give customers a personalized shopping experience. To do this, eCommerce businesses combine AI with data science to learn more about their customers and offer them products suited for them.
AI can help in predicting customer behavior better than ever before. Predictions are made using the collected data from previous purchases and browsing habits, which would result in an accurate prediction of what the customer may be interested in. So far, the most popular use cases for AI in eCommerce are fraud detection, marketing automation, content marketing, and personalization.”
“Robots will be in our homes and our workplaces. They will have a huge impact on how we shop, what we buy, and the way we run business. To put it simply, human involvement in eCommerce will be reduced to only the essentials. Workers displaced by robots will find employment in new areas such as robot maintenance or other exciting jobs that will create the future we all want to live in.
Virtual stores and shopping malls will replace brick-and-mortar businesses because this will lower costs while providing a better experience for shoppers. The new eCommerce world we live in today is already making it easier than ever to do business and buy products from all over the world. In the next 15 years, I think we’ll see a continued expansion of these freedoms thanks to even greater advancements in technology and commerce.”
Head of Marketing in Softengi sees the future of eCommerce as immersive, personalized, and gamified, and she explains why.
“With the rapid growth in online shopping over the past ten years, much of eCommerce has gone global and will continue to do so for brands large and small. And many products and resources are coming from other countries. So one small change in the supply chain process results in a more amplified effect at the end. And as we’ve seen recently with COVID-19, trade disputes, and stuck cargo ships, these changes will impact many businesses one or two years later.
But it’s not just major events that can affect your supply chain. Surges in customer orders can wipe out your stock levels when tight inventory. And it can often cause stockouts. Meeting customer demands, especially during the busy holiday season, requires a well-planned roadmap showing when, what, and how to restock.”
“I started a global branding and digital marketing firm 20 years ago in Cambridge, MA before e-commerce was the preferred way to shop, and today it is growing faster than ever with Covid. All signs point to continued aggressive growth, fewer SMBs able to compete with large retailers, drone delivery will be a given, Millennials and Gen Z consumers grew up in the digital age with omnichannel assumed so there is no turning back as their buying power increases. Brick-and-mortar retail will shift from transactional to experiential as showrooms, for loyalty-building and brand marketing platforms.
There will always be new shiny objects in marketing to distract you, social media and technology are 24/7 but SEO is here to stay whether it is via Google, voice, or whatever comes next. You get one chance to make a great first impression so if you want to improve the impression you are making and give your eCommerce business a boost make sure to stay current on the latest algorithms so your site stays optimized.”
The Founder of Dabash Deals, predicts that eCommerce will continue its growth in the following years.
“Eventually, I believe that it will come down to fulfillment services.
Getting a client to invest in your online store is enough achievement, but shipping and packing cannot be compromised. If you have underlying issues with your delivery services, you will not succeed in the tough eCommerce market.
Ecommerce fulfillment will be the most integral part of online retail stores. The market is already very diverse in terms of products; ultimately, the future of the retail business will come down to who provides the most convenient delivery services.”
The founder of CareMax, foresees that efficiency will play a significant role in the following years.
“I would imagine that people will source their products more than currently. I foresee people purchasing more of what they need or want, online or offline, looking for deals and discounts based on efficiency rather than convenience.
For example, going to the store will be a choice rather than a necessity. I believe a person’s standard of living and purchasing power will not change much in the next 10-15 years as other more essential things affect people’s lives such as where they live, food security, education, etc.
In my opinion, in 10-15 years, eCommerce will be more sophisticated. I see two scenarios that could occur:
“The future of eCommerce will be shaped by technology 10-15 years from now. And there’s the only thing that will stand out, the emergence of a new payment method – cryptocurrency. It has now managed to gain some attention and has been proven to be a viable currency. And with this, a new payment system will rise.
Crypto will be recognized globally and a considerable change will be created then. More businesses and big companies will begin to acknowledge crypto as a viable payment in response to consumer demand. Similar to how consumers had welcomed digital wallets, crypto will be embraced because of its security.
Cryptocurrency is very hard to fake. And it’ll be the primary reason that’ll give them worldwide acceptance.”
Co-founder, and CMO of Meetanshi, an eCommerce development company in India, sees the following 5 years as a golden age of eCommerce.
“Upcoming 10-15 years are going to be a golden period for the eCommerce market. eCommerce is currently in the growth phase and is expected to prevail its dominance over the traditional commerce practices in no time.
Currently, the world is going through massive digitalization, and the eCommerce market is growing at a rapid pace. It is expected to continue its momentum for 4 to 5 years more. However, at the point of saturation, maybe after 4 to 5 years of rapid growth, it will slow down and continue to grow at a uniform rate in the upcoming 10 to 15 years.”
A 5x Entrepreneur, and CEO of Champion Leadership Group LLC, predicts that creating an exceptional digital experience will become a top priority for all eCommerce businesses.
“The growth of e-commerce from static websites to interactive customer solution sites was made possible by advanced technology. Still, it needed a global health crisis to establish e-commerce as the new normal for the world’s population.
As a result of pandemic-induced societal limitations and quarantine orders, physical transactions were forced into the digital domain in 2020, resulting in a transition to online-everything.
Consumers expect greater digital access than they have ever demanded, and offering an amazing digital experience will become a top priority for every business.”
The Founder of Dope Dog expects the rise of eco-conscious and automation of business processes. She pointed out seven elements we could expect in the near future.
“One of the biggest trends we’re likely to see is the continued adoption and growth of Augmented Reality (AR) & Virtual Reality (VR) experiences in eCommerce.
This is coming hot on the heels of Facebook’s change to Meta, shifting the focus to a digital metaverse. More eCommerce stores will use AR to help users “try on” various products, like makeup, shoes, or jewelry, by uploading their own photos or video.
VR, on the other hand, can also work for getting customers into virtual stores or creating bigger projects, like adding furniture to an existing or future home.
Similarly, another trend that’s likely to take off in 2022 and beyond is the use of 3D modeling for products. Instead of having to shoot multiple versions of products (in different angles, colors, or sizes), eCommerce merchants can use a 3D model and have the customer try out different combinations.”
“Coming from social media, we can predict that many more e-commerces will jump into the visual trend. This will allow them to engage their customers using high-quality multimedia and AR as if they were at home with them. We can count on branded filters for social media channels, 360-videos, VR experiences, and tutorials to come.
We have also seen the rise of dynamic pricing, where sellers adjust their pricing taking data into consideration. Retailers need to be in touch with their customers’ demands to raise or lower certain items’ prices, for ROI maximization. Also, we can predict that many more sellers will try to bundle up their products, according to their customers’ needs.”
Marketing Communication Specialist at Maropost points out 10 trends we can expect to see in the following years.
Co-Founder of Respona says it is impossible to predict exactly which of the two paths eCommerce will head for, but he guesses which two directions might be.
“The eCommerce landscape is changing rapidly, with more new entrants into the sector than ever before. What does the future hold for the sector? We cannot tell at this point in time, but it certainly seems to be heading in one of two directions.
One direction looks like an oligarchy now, with Amazon’s size and scale now meaning domination of key eCommerce sectors is very likely. Expect smaller retailers to follow suit and start merging or getting bought out by Amazon rivals or partners as they struggle to keep up with its sheer scale and innovation rate.
In 2030, I predict that you will order a large percentage of your groceries online. Online grocery delivery has been successful elsewhere in the world and is only going to grow further in popularity in America.
Drug stores, pet supplies, and even convenience store items will be ordered from the comforts of home without having to waste time driving around aimlessly or waiting in long lines at brick-and-mortar stores. This means more jobs for drivers and fewer jobs for cashiers–for better or worse.”
SyncSpider is the app-2-app integration tool built for eCommerce.
Grow your sales by instantly becoming a multichannel retailer, update your inventory between multiple web stores with a single click and connect your favorite eCommerce tools to work flawlessly in sync.