Q1 Roundup: Three Trends to Keep Your Eyez On
Q1 was a doozy.
From geopolitical instability to market-shaking technology developments, the last few months have held no shortage of surprises.
What can e-commerce leaders learn from the tumultuous Q1 landscape?
In short: the days of runaway e-commerce growth are over. Expect a slowdown – and optimize the onsite experience accordingly. Prepare for an advertising battle royale on traditional media platforms. And get ready to support…crypto?
Here are the top trends our e-commerce industry experts are following.
E-commerce sales plateauing (even Amazon’s)
E-commerce’s white-hot streak couldn’t last forever.
Q1 saw e-commerce spending decrease by 3.3% compared to the same period in 2021. (Blame historic pandemic-era comps, shopper’s return to brick and mortar, and rising inflation.)
In other words: shoppers are spending e-commerce dollars more carefully. And brands feeling the pain – among them Amazon, Etsy, eBay, and Wayfair – are scrambling for ways to engage shoppers and reinvigorate the customer experience.
Keep your shopper journey frictionless by ensuring you capitalize on each opportunity that enters your online shop. Tracking success is easy – let the sales role in. What we see is that the winners in this competitive online space research the failures and quickly highlight issues and enable service reps to intervene. As a starting point, make sure you’re avoiding common pitfalls in the e-commerce journey.
Reminder: on average, 68% of failures in the Add to Cart and Checkout stages are due to Goal Failures (not technical issues). Learn more about how to measure Goal Failures here.
Apple privacy features’ impact felt a year later
It’s every advertiser’s nightmare scenario. A year after Apple’s App Tracking Transparency (ATT) iOS14 implementation, the latest numbers are showing that a staggering 80% of US users are declining to have their activity tracked in iOS 14.5.
The result? Advertisers have flocked to traditional mass media advertising platforms, driving up the cost of advertising on these platforms – with TikTok and Facebook seeing the largest increases at +185% and +61% CPM year over year.
In a competitive market, performance media hygiene matters more than ever. Make each impression count by ensuring your ad links are working. Monitor any 404 errors stemming from campaigns or promotions. (Learn how Taos Footwear did exactly that and considerably boosted their ROAS.) In addition, incentivize shoppers to share information with you like interests and preferences to help inform ad campaigns.
Digital payments as the new battleground
Gucci made a splash recently with its announcement that it will accept cryptocurrency as a form of payment in 5 of its stores. (This was notable primarily because of Gucci’s luxury status. More mainstream brands – like Home Depot, Starbucks, and Overstock.com have accepted digital currencies for a while.)
The announcement came against the backdrop of explosive growth for alternative payments, including buy-now-pay-later (BNPL).
Shoppers increasingly crave flexibility in how they pay. And digital payment innovation will increasingly become a way that e-commerce brands differentiate the customer experience. (Smart e-commerce brands are already offering more payment options – like BNPL – to cater to younger audiences.)
As you venture into new forms of digital payment (crypto or not), test it on limited products or for limited amounts of time. Monitor your checkout funnel closely for payment errors and offer alternate payment methods to get your shopper checked out regardless of digital currency challenges.
The bottom line
There’s nothing new about e-commerce brands setting goals around improving the onsite experience, optimizing their advertising strategies, and offering customers more flexibility throughout the checkout process.
During the boom days of pandemic-fueled e-commerce growth, these felt like “nice to haves.”
But Q1 upped the stakes – showing that these initiatives have real and immediate revenue impact. The e-commerce brands that will survive (and thrive) are those that have visibility into the customer journey and the tools to systematically remove friction at every step along the way.
Learn how Webeyez helps e-commerce brands pull away from the crowd.