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This week's top 5 cultural insights and e-commerce trends: 03 May 2019.

Business · 4 min read

AOB: 03 May 2019

This week AOB brings you the latest on food-delivery apps, cashless spending, sustainable fashion and more. Read on to keep your business in the loop with the most recent e-commerce trends.

The rise of the ‘dark kitchens’

The global appetite for takeaways is insatiable, with recent estimates of the online restaurant-to-consumer delivery market volume at US$58billion in 2019 (that’s a lot of pizza!) In our digital world, it’s no surprise that an increasing number of these orders are placed through apps.

In the UK, where apps now account for 39% of takeaway orders, Deliveroo is getting creative to meet demand. It has recently begun trialling Deliveroo Editions – pop-up kitchen spaces its restaurant partners can use to avoid over-stretching existing sites, and reduce the traditional costs incurred when expanding into new areas. In turn, Deliveroo can offer more choice to customers. Win win. See how you can make the most of the lucrative m-commerce market with our Mobile Commerce 101 guide.

The thrill of unboxing

Subscription-based boxes have disrupted the e-commerce sector in recent years. From flowers to grooming products (and even a short-lived toasted cheese sandwich delivery service), it seems there nothing you can’t have neatly packaged up and delivered to your door on a recurring basis. And the boxes look like they’re here to stay – a recent survey of US consumers by First Insight showed that 25% of respondents are currently receiving a subscription box, with another 32% planning to in the near future.

For start-ups, they offer an invaluable opportunity to give customers a taster of their products through an ‘experience’ – the anticipation and unveiling of the box – that will engage them on an emotional level that increases their chances of returning. Read more on what you need to know on subscription marketingLearn more about subscription marketing here.

Cashless societies becoming the norm

Cash is no longer king, according to global statistics showing our increasing shift towards digital payments. From contactless cards to online retail, the place for physical money is shrinking quickly. Contactless payments in the UK were worth £9billion in the first half of 2017 alone; Sweden is set to become entirely cashless by 2030; and 70% of Chinese internet users polled thought carrying cash was unnecessary.

This trend appears to be split demographically. While the older generation have greater concerns about the safety of online transactions, millennials, Gen X and Y-ers – raised in a digital world – have been more accepting of the change. Online SMEs launching in this marketplace have a wealth of constantly-on consumers to sell to. Discover how to make the most of this opportunity with our 22 Golden Rules of E-commerce

The importance of free delivery

The delivery options retailers offer consumers have a big influence on their purchasing decisions – 9 out of 10 consumers say free shipping is the biggest incentive to shop online more, and orders placed with free shipping average around 30% higher in value.

Unsurprisingly, retailers are responding to this. A recent survey by law firm TLT found that 73% of retailers expect more companies to offer free delivery to give their business the competitive edge. And it appears they’re investing – with spending on logistics set to increase from 9% of turnover to 12%. Don’t get left behind! Check out our guide on how e-tailers can keep up with delivery demand.

Generation Z disrupts the fast-fashion market

Depop, the online social marketplace so beloved of Generation Z, has enjoyed rapid success. Since its 2011 launch in Milan, the app has grown to 13 million users in 147 countries. 90% of users are under the age of 26. They’re tech savvy, entrepreneurial, and care about sustainability – which means many use the platform to sell second-hand clothes. According to Marketplace VP Rachel Swidenbank, some Depop sellers have made up to US$300,000 a year on the app and bought houses and cars before reaching their twenties. Impressive stuff! 

For more on sustainable fashion, have a read through our interview with the founders of Dark Peak and their start-up success.

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