In order to understand the e-commerce trends that’ll take over 2023, we need to first look back.
2022 has been keeping e-commerce business owners on their toes. From the end of the pandemic-induced boom to the economic shocks caused by the war in Ukraine, it has been a very challenging year for the e-commerce industry.
To thrive in the e-commerce space now it’s more important than ever to stay ahead of the curve and adopt emerging trends.
That’s why we’ve invited 20 e-commerce experts to review the changes in the industry and share their thoughts about the trends that will define 2023.
What e-commerce trends will define 2023?
E-commerce industry growth
The e-commerce industry growth is expected to accelerate in 2023, driven by the increasing number of online shoppers and the continued rise of digital payments. According to Statista the retail e-commerce revenue in Europe is expected to grow to 939,7 billion dollars and 1,222 billion dollars in 2025.
The fast growth leads to a rise in competition among e-commerce companies, with many investing in technology, logistics, and marketing to differentiate themselves and attract customers.
The availability of higher-quality products and a more user-friendly shopping experience will be essential for all companies to keep up with the competition. Businesses are looking into creating a seamless shopping journey tailored to individual needs and preferences.
Curious to know what that means? Check out the trends experts forecast to become vital in 2023.
Trend 1. Focus on Value as Global Recession Looms
Martin Macmillan, YOUWE: “E-commerce in 2023 will be painted against a backdrop of political uncertainty, on a global scale, and a cost of living crisis that impacts both consumer spending habits, supply chains and business operating costs. Hesitancy to spend will need to be counteracted by an exceptional shopping experience, underpinned by great customer service. Customers will demand an easy returns process, including strong omnichannel integrations with bricks-and-mortar stores, as well as the ability to collect their order to avoid shipping costs and reduce their carbon footprint.”
Greg Zakowicz, Omnisend: “I expect e-commerce brands to shift to a value-first messaging strategy. We will see this play out in a variety of ways. First, expect to see brands reinforce their competitive differentiators and value-adds such as friendly shipping and return policies, customer service, loyalty programs, customer testimonials, and featuring top-rated products. Second, they’ll add the marketing channels that consumers prefer, notably SMS. By communicating with consumers via the channels they choose, brands can establish greater rapport and messaging value.”
Trend 2. Sustainable vs Fast E-commerce
Rob van den Heuvel, Sendcloud: “In 2023, sustainable commerce is finally going to beat fast commerce! Attitudes towards a more sustainable living have changed dramatically in the past years, but it is still not considered a top priority for consumers — only 8% would take action by cancelling an order if green delivery was unavailable. Luckily, the signing of the European Green Deal has forced companies to take action and amongst others invest in green shipping options and sustainable packaging. Next year, I expect both carriers and merchants to play a key role in sustainable behavioural change amongst consumers. By increasingly pointing out sustainable options on product pages and in the checkout, we can encourage consumers to make green rather than fast decisions.”
Trend 3. Rising Importance of Standout Brand Experience
Massimo Fattoretto, Fattoretto Agency: “The biggest trend in e-commerce marketing in 2023, also given the increase in advertising costs, will certainly be the enhancement of the brand and a brand-centric system. Google will keep providing us with fewer data due to privacy regulations. Therefore, e-commerce brands will need to put the brand at the center of all their activities: the platform, SEO, UX, content, proprietary video content, live streaming to create a unique and memorable experience.”
Stefanie Konkel, Eshop Guide: “In 2023, we will get to know brands and the people behind them better. The willingness to be transparent, authentic and approachable is already there and will continue to grow. We see the ubiquitous presence of personal videos on LinkedIn, Instagram, Youtube or TikTok, or pop-up stores and cooperations with other big brands. Opening up to a wider audience, meeting customers online first, then offline, building a personal level through transparency only encourages growth.”
Trend 4. Focus on Online Marketing Effectiveness
Chloë Thomas, eCommerceMasterPlan: “Retailer advertising budgets are going to be spread over an increasingly diverse list of advertising platforms. Rather than the bulk going to Facebook and Google, we’re going to see brands seeking out bluer oceans where they can get a better return on investment than just fighting it out on the usual platforms with everyone else. It’s going to create an attribution nightmare – but improve overall advertising effectiveness.”
Florian Ibe, Pictibe: “The competition for buyers will be higher in 2023 due to the global crisis. However, one thing will remain the same: the opportunity to grow quickly and strongly through targeted online marketing. SEO has never been more important. SEA + Social Ads for fast traffic and a very good landing page will ensure sales growth and long-term success.”
Trend 5. Say Hello to Live Shopping on Social Media
Doone Roisin, Female Startup Club: “Live shopping is going to continue to explode the growth of DTC brands in 2023. Whilst we haven’t reinvented the wheel on it (we’ve all grown up watching live shopping on tv!) the evolution of live shopping has tapped into gen Z consumers in a big way.”
Steve Hutt, eCommerce Fastlane: “Live selling is a powerful tool that’s fueled by social media. You can broadcast to your audience to accelerate purchase decisions, boosting buyer engagement, and enhance product experience with real-time product demos.”
Carl Walker, Fluidcommerce: “Live commerce promises to generate exciting revenue figures and conversion rates. With some brands already reporting record daily sales and conversion rates of over 30%, it is certainly a trend to watch over the next 12 months.”
Shannon Fitzsimmons, UK Curly Girl: “If you are a TikTok user you will be very aware of the live shopping trend in 2023. At the top of the TikTok feed you’ll usually catch retailers of all niches selling items live to viewers with special discounts. TikTok is just one of the many social platforms that have introduced live shopping, you can also stream to customers via Amazon Live, which is a great indication of where e-commerce is going.”
Trend 6. More Short-form Video Content
Doone Roisin, Female Startup Club: “In 2023 we’re going to see more of how websites are evolving into more of a “TikTok” feel. TikTok changed the way we consume short-form video content and now many apps are launching features allowing e-commerce sellers to have Stories as part of their website.”
Chris Fil, ChrisFil: “TikTok, Instagram Reels, and YouTube Shorts have paved the way for short, fast and easy-to-consume video content. As these platforms continue to push such videos – e-commerce brands can utilize this trend to easily increase brand awareness and reach.”
Trend 7. Increased Adoption of Augmented Reality
Fernando Angulo, Semrush: “Experts estimate that implementing augmented reality (AR) in an online store can increase sales by up to 71%. Because this experience is similar to what a customer can have in a physical store, this technology allows for more interaction with the consumer as well as a unique and satisfying experience. Furthermore, it opens up a world of possibilities for showing products to customers prior to the purchase process.”
Melissa Dixon, Bigcommerce: “The augmented reality market is estimated to reach $78 billion by 2028. A large driver of this predicted growth is the adoption of AR by both online and brick-and-mortar retailers to improve the shopping experience. Visualizing various styles and colors of a garment or accessory without actually manually swapping them out used to be the stuff of science fiction, but it will now define the e-commerce retail experience for the discerning consumer. The ability of sites to personalise the shopping experience for the consumer in real-time would be the biggest AI trend in e-commerce”
Trend 8. The AI Empowerment Will Continue
Derric Haynie, EcommerceTech: “I believe 2023 will be the year where we jump to 80 or 90%+ brands using AI in significant ways to empower their business. Even though split testing has been around for a while, it has seemed to be reserved for “expert-level” marketers, whereas in 2023, I believe this will also be democratized with smart split / multi-variate testing tools that don’t require developers or expert-level marketers at the helm. The trend has been bubbling up for a while, and many brands are now using AI in their business in one form or another. Anyone who isn’t will be left in the dust.”
Matt Edmundson, eCommerce Podcast: “The biggest area that AI will have an impact on will be in the ability of sites to personalise the shopping experience for the consumer in real-time. There will also be a lot of ‘fluff’ in this trend that will distract sellers, so it’s best to avoid the ‘gimmicks’ and focus in on what works for your business.”
Trend 9. Tech Stack Consolidation
Shane Forster, REVIEWS.io: “The biggest trend I see coming in 2023 is consolidation. With inflation continuing to rise and waves of layoffs occurring at many companies, brands need to ensure that they are wisely utilising the capital and resources that they have. Brands can no longer freely spend on tools for niche purposes and will further look towards consolidating their tech stack to gain further efficiency. This will continue as brands feel the pressure of changing economic conditions, yet consumers demanding more value from their purchases.”
Francois Lanthier Nadeau, DUDA: “Many entrepreneurs & SMBs don’t like stitching together dozens of platforms, SaaS, and apps to make their business run smoothly. I expect that we will see even more verticalized all-in-one platforms (“the one-stop shop for health providers”) and horizontalized all-in-one platforms (“the one-stop shop for SMBs”).”
Trend 10. Fewer Dependencies on Marketplaces
Jordi Ordóñez, JordiOb: “One of the trends that I have been seeing for some time now (and that I think will continue in 2023) is sellers trying to reduce their Amazon dependency. So marketplace and therefore revenue streams diversification will be the key element of success for Amazon sellers during 2023.”
Rafa Olano, Trusted Shops: “Amazon’s commissions on sales through the marketplace continue to increase. Therefore, in 2023 many brands will finally “jump ship” and focus on their own online stores. With many affordable solutions available on the market brands can launch and become competitive fast. Some of these solutions are payment methods (including many “buy now pay later” companies); logistics (offering next day delivery); conversion rate optimization (smart search engines, CRMs) and of course e-commerce platforms.”
Put e-commerce trends into practice
We hope that these expert insights will help you improve your e-commerce strategy and thrive this coming year. Here’s to a happy and prosperous 2023! Need any help putting these trends into practice for your e-commerce business? Feel free to reach out! All experts are here to help you.
Do you know any other e-commerce trends we haven’t covered in the post? Let us know in the comments!
I really enjoyed reading this post. It’s great to see so many different perspectives on the e-commerce industry, and this piece is definitely informative.
Thanks Ben for your kind reply. It’s a great compliment to receive that our content is valuable.