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This week's top e-commerce trends: 13 November 2020

Business · 3 min read

Any Other Business: 13 November 2020

This week’s AOB looks at the latest e-commerce trends from around the world including the marketing channel most favored by brand leaders, and the new sustainability initiative that rewards consumers for rewearing clothes.

Email marketing is still King

A new survey1 has revealed that email is considered to be the most effective marketing tool amongst many businesses – even beating social media.

The research, based on responses from more than 2,000 marketers, found that 77% think email is one of their two most effective marketing channels, whilst 78% indicated that email marketing is vital to the overall success of their company, a seven percent increase since last year.

Melissa Sargeant, CMO of email marketing firm Litmus2, which conducted the survey, believes the ability to personalize messaging is what makes email marketing so powerful for brands.

“In today's marketing environment, with brands working to break through the clutter of digital advertisements in an efficient and timely manner, personalization and targeted messaging need to take priority”, she said3. "[Email allows] the ability to garner subscriber engagement data and information to inform overall brand messaging and personalize content.”

Did you know that the average ROI for every dollar spent on email marketing is US$50?4 Learn how your e-commerce business can make the most of this valuable channel with our expert in-depth guide to email marketing.

Dior enlists augmented reality to wow at-home consumers

Amongst the pandemic’s devastating effect on retail, Dior5 has become the latest brand to experiment with augmented reality to replicate the in-store experience for customers. 

The luxury fashion house has created a Snapchat6 lens for its B27 men’s sneakers so that shoppers can visualize what their feet would look like in a pair of the shoes. Customers simply point their smartphones at their feet to instantly see how the shoes look, no matter where they are.

Users can try on six variations of the sneakers and purchase directly from the Dior channel on Snapchat or Dior.com, demonstrating how a digital-first approach can help brands build excitement and drive interest on platforms their customers are familiar with. 

Dior’s move is one of the many ways brands have adapted to consumer needs during COVID-19. Pick up some tips on how your business can do the same in our exclusive series on Pandemic Culture.

Mobile-first shopping and free shipping top consumers’ wish lists

A new e-commerce survey has unveiled some interesting insights into consumers’ online shopping behaviors.

The survey by Episerver7 found that 53% of consumers who said they shop online every day primarily rely on their smartphones to do so8, highlighting the need for e-commerce brands to ensure their content is mobile friendly.

The research also found that across the world, free standard shipping is the number one service shoppers expect from brands and retailers.

56% of global online shoppers have been influenced to return to a retail website to purchase items they had previously viewed or added to their cart after being served a retargeted advert. Of those who did not return after being retargeted, the top reasons cited were "the ads were annoying" and "the ads were not relevant to what I was looking at before.”

New app utilizes gamification to reward sustainable fashion consumers

Sustainability has become a hot topic within the fashion sector, as more consumers seek to adopt eco-friendly habits. The Wear Me 30 Times9 app is aiming to help people fulfil their sustainable intentions by rewarding them for rewearing pieces of clothing.

The app creates a QR code that’s visible on the labels of clothes sold by participating brands. When a customer buys a garment, they can download the app, scan the QR code and upload a selfie of themselves wearing it to social media to show their commitment to the initiative. When they reach milestones along the “wear 30 times” journey, they’ll receive gifts from the brands they bought from, such as free items or discount vouchers. Currently, 30 international brands are taking part in the sustainable fashion initiative.

Pandemic speeds up South Africa’s e-commerce growth by two years

African countries have traditionally been slow to adopt e-commerce, yet there are some exciting signs of growth within the sector, fuelled largely by the pandemic.

Market research specialist World Wide Worx10 has estimated that online retail in South Africa will grow by at least 40% this year11, with the effects of the pandemic upturning its previous forecast of 20%. “This means online retail as a percentage of total retail could rise from 1.46% last year to more than 2% this year – a level we had only anticipated by 2022,” explains WWW’s CEO Arthur Goldstuck12.

The changes have been primarily driven by two factors – a huge rise in online grocery buying during the early months of the pandemic, and a rapid shift to online selling by retailers who were forced to close their shops during the first phases of lockdown.

Now is the time to explore cross-border opportunities with South Africa. Our country guide will show you how. 

1 - 2020 State of Email, Fall Edition, E-commerce Times, November 2020

2 - Litmus

3 - Melissa Sargeant, E-commerce Times, November 2020

4 - DMA Email Benchmarking Report, 2019

5 - Dior

6 - Snapchat

7 - Episerver

8 - Episerver survey, Cision PR Newswire, October 2020

9 - Wear Me 30 Times

10 - World Wide Worx

11 - World Wide Worx forecast, Gadget, October 2020

12 - Arthur Goldstuck, Gadget, October 2020

Anna Thompson
Anna Thompson Discover content team

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