eCommerce Trends for 2022
The eCommerce industry has been growing steadily for several years. The Covid outbreak in 2020 was a groundbreaking event that involved an accelerated transformation of retail worldwide: that year online commerce broke all forecasts, in an exceptional context of lockdowns and restrictions for physical stores.
2021 was a year of consolidation. And in this 2022, installed in the new normality, eCommerce growth is expected to continue. In Europe it is estimated that during this year the retail eCommerce revenue will reach 500 billion US dollars. And the horizon seems to offer good news too: in 2025, estimates put the total revenue of the sector on the continent at 569 billion.
One of retail areas that has undergone a faster transformation in recent years is FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods). This is a very changing sector that is currently in full transformation.
The pandemic forced many sellers almost overnight to start working in the online world. Although two years later most of the restrictions have been lifted, many brands have decided to focus their growth efforts and strategies on online channels. The grocery market will live again in this 2022 crucial changes that will force the actors involved to adapt and react quickly,
Although the eCommerce explosion is global, there are obvious differences between countries and regions. In the European Union, the most mature markets show a share of e-commerce users of over 60%.
The United Kingdom is the leader in the region. The British market was already the largest before the pandemic and by 2023 its size is expected to reach 22.1 million US dollars. France is another of the leaders in the continent, although it is estimated that its growth in the period between 2018 and 2023 will be lower.
The German online grocery market will experience the highest relative growth in this period, with annual increases of 23.2%, going from a 1.3 billion market in 2018 to 3.8 billion next year. Spain is another example of accelerated transformation: its eCommerce market will go from 0.9 billion in 2018 to 2 billion in 2023.
Top eCommerce trends for 2022
eCommerce trend #1: Quick Commerce
Quick Commerce (or Q-Commerce) is a new form of online retail that is growing at full speed. It is based on the ability of any brand to deliver an order in less than an hour.
This practice has been in use for many years in the takeaway food sector. But more and more brands from other very different areas are incorporating it, trying to cut as much as possible the delivery times of their products.
One of the advantages for brands is that buyers are willing to pay extra money for a fast and good-quality delivery. This allows sellers to work with wider margins than those that usually exist in e-commerce.
From an infrastructure point of view, this type of commerce is a big challenge for Brands. To meet the demands of time and speed, companies need warehouses in the towns where this service is offered, in addition to a delivery team trained and prepared to work in very short periods of time.
This is a very changing sector with new actors stepping up and others fading out. But some of the most relevant examples in recent years are Europe-based, such as Flink, Gorillas, Glovo, Zapp, Dija, Cajoo, Weezy.
German company Gorillas -focused on groceries delivery- has raised $290 million in Series B funding, at a valuation that surpasses $1 billion and the Turkish company Getir, that just started to expand in European markets like Spain or Italy by the acquisition of another smaller company named Blok.
Monitoring (and optimizing) the presence of brands on the Digital Shelf of these type of commerce sites can be challenging, but that's something we can help with, because our Digital Shelf solution covers the main European Quick Commerce sites.
eCommerce trend #2: Social Commerce
Social Commerce is a growing trend, especially among D2C (direct to consumer) brands. Sellers that want to keep the entire user shopping experience in one place: from finding the product to making a final decision, all in one single platform. The philosophy is clear: it is not necessary to force the buyer to leave their favorite social network to make a purchase. But you have to make sure that this process is smooth and not time-consuming.
The most prominent platforms that already allow this type of e-commerce are Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest or TikTok. Social Commerce also allows users to have direct communication with the sellers. But with other buyers too, through the reviews systems.
The ultimate goal of brands is to enter the everyday life of buyers. And also achieving very useful feedback for the development of our sales strategies, always trying to arouse emotions among consumers. The social commerce industry is expected to grow three times as fast as traditional eCommerce in the coming years, according to an Accenture report.
eCommerce trend #3: Live streaming commerce
In a similar vein to Social commerce, live streaming commerce allows brands to highlight their best products and values using social media platforms. Either through their own live streaming channels or using influencers. This new form of eCommerce also allows brands to have a live interaction with buyers, who can ask questions using the chat on the streaming platform.
Live streaming commerce allows consumers to see a demonstration of the convenience of buying a product or service, without having to go to the physical store. A very useful feature to boost sales and increase sales conversion rates.
Brands that are committed to this trend must be aware that this type of content must inspire confidence in consumers. Therefore highly scripted or prearranged performances are not useful; instead, the goal is for live streaming to be as natural and close as possible to the potential buyer.
eCommerce trend #4: AR commerce
AR commerce bears certain similarities to live streaming commerce. This marketing channel allows the user to preview experiences and virtually try the products before making the purchase. A personalized experience that is applicable to different sectors, from beauty cosmetics, to home furniture and kids toys.
This type of commerce allows the user to live an experience almost as realistic as the one they could experience in physical stores. In this sense, brands can reach potential buyers who, for example, do not have a brick and mortar store close to their house. Or to customers from countries or regions where a brand has not a physical location.
For sellers, AR commerce can lead to significant cost savings, once the initial investment is done. For example in relation to the maintenance of traditional stores and the hiring of shop assistants.
eCommerce trend #5: eRetail and omnichannel media
When looking at the eCommerce trends for 2022, we have to take into account the enormous diversity of consumer habits. Some buyers, as we have seen, prefer to live their entire shopping experience on a social network. But there are others who make their purchase decisions in online retailers.
An omnichannel media strategy also allows brands to create a unified experience for the consumer across multiple platforms, no matter where the purchase is made. The goal is to create an almost identical experience that transcends individual platforms. This will allow our brand to take advantage of new platforms and increase customer retention rates.
As we have seen, this 2022 brings many profound changes for e-Commerce. In a period like the current one of expanding online sales, brands that invest wisely can achieve a substantial market advantage over their competitors.
The goal of any brand should be to find the strategy that best suits their needs. This can either be focusing on Quick Commerce, using social media to sell, streaming platforms or creating an omnichannel shopping experience.
In the coming months we will surely see more changes and new trends in this sector. At Shalion we want to exchange good practices about eCommerce evolution, so don't hesitate to contact us and try our eCometry tools to keep up with all the eCommerce trends.