Unexpected eCommerce trends to tap into in 2022 and beyond
Posted on 2022 May,20

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When it comes to improving your eCommerce brand, it is always better to stay ahead of the curve and be aware of all the latest online trends. 

With this in mind, the partnership marketing experts at Affise have trawled the internet to find the latest crazes - from voice search options to make your site as diverse and accessible as possible, to sustainability movements. 

Sam O’Brien, Chief Marketing Officer at Affise, had this to say: “If there is one thing that needs to be at the forefront of your mind when expanding an eCommerce business, it is keeping ahead of the competition. Falling behind with new trends and themes can cause customers to lose faith in your reliability, and possibly even cause them to look elsewhere. 

“Another crucial element of eCommerce expansion is making sure that every change you make allows your site to remain as accessible as possible. For example, if you decided to implement more of a crossover between the online and offline aspects of your business, it could make shopping harder for customers with limited mobility - as they may struggle to shop physically. The needs of the customer always need to be put first.”


1. Voice Assistance 

The benefits of personal voice assistants are numerous, and while technology such as Amazon’s Alexa has been around for years now, this trend is just starting to move into the eCommerce realm.

Voice-activated ‘chatbots’ make online shopping effortless for people that may have vision impairment issues, as the need to scroll and read is eliminated. 

As well as this, chatbots have been shown to minimise higher bounce rates, as they provide knowledge and insight that would make a customer linger on the page. Because of this, chatbots also help to enhance a brand’s SEO capabilities. 


2. Sustainability 

As the impact of climate change continues to get worse, eCommerce brands embracing more sustainable changes is one of the less surprising trends of the year. 

One of the most effective methods of adopting this strategy is to try to improve the eco-friendliness of packaging used when shipping products. 

For example, with the average UK household throwing away 40kg of plastic a year, there has never been a better time to implement compostable and reusable packaging. 


3. Small Business Mindsets 

The pandemic and subsequent national lockdowns led to many people turning their crafty hobbies into small online businesses - and many people are reluctant to go back to bigger entrepreneurs. 

With this in mind, it could be helpful to consider the personal elements of your eCommerce site and, if possible, take a more ‘Etsy’ approach. Celebrities such as Stacey Solomon frequently promote these kinds of brands, causing huge surges in interest.


4. Influencer Marketing 

Influencer marketing has seen a huge increase in popularity in recent years, as it offers the opportunity for both the brand and the influencer to build their following and improve their reputation. 

Depending on what the niche of your brand is, targeting influencers with the same sort of following can be a chance to reach a totally new demographic. 

For example, if your company sells vegan cheese, teaming up with an influencer that promotes plant-based meals would encourage their followers to be directed towards your website. 


5. The Return of the High Street

It has been rumoured that, despite the closure of many shops to make way for online retailers, physical shopping is set to make a comeback. Since the lockdown, many people have started to do all their shopping online - from clothes to food - as it was the only option during the pandemic. 

Now, however, people are more eager than ever to get out and experience what they missed out on for all those years. Loneliness increased significantly in the UK during the lockdowns, with many people missing the sense of community and togetherness that shopping can bring. 

Once Primark opened its doors again, the queues were staggering - and as Primark famously continues to resist going online, it highlights the success that physical stores still possess.


6. Mobile-Friendly Features

Many of us are guilty of finding ourselves aimlessly browsing eCommerce sites on our phones - after all, we have our phones with us all the time, which is not the case for our laptops. 

Despite this, it has been noted that a lot of websites still have a long way to go in terms of mobile-friendliness, with many people not completing conversions or abandoning carts of shopping. 

Having too much text or too many animations on a website can be jarring, even if the effect is intentional for artistic purposes (sites like Omighty.com), and can make it almost impossible to browse on a mobile.

In 2023, we predict that we will be seeing a lot more mobile-friendly features.


7. Social Commerce

Finally, we predict that we will be seeing a lot more brands selling their wares directly through their social media channels. 

It was reported that 53% of UK consumers spend up to four hours a day on social media sites, with Statista highlighting that social media spending had increased by 13% since the pandemic. 

Having a link in your social media bio that sends customers directly to your website is a guaranteed recipe for success, as it eliminates the need to stop scrolling and move onto another web page. 

With so many new and exciting opportunities for eCommerce brands to try, it is no surprise that the online world is set to be disrupted even more in 2023.