In theory, the roots of eCommerce can be traced back to when the first credit card transaction took place more than four decades ago.
It is therefore interesting to note that the term eCommerce did not enjoy widespread fame until rather recently thanks to the rise of Internet retail solutions. Now, countless millions of websites contain some type of point-of-sale system so that customers can purchase a good or a service with the click of a button. But as this industry develops, what eCommerce trends should you look out for?
It is only logical to assume that we will witness some major changes in the near future. What do the experts have to say and how will these advancements affect eCommerce trends as a whole?
The role of artificial intelligence
The majority of modern eCommerce platforms are beginning to employ decidedly “smart” algorithms to increase their user-friendly nature. This is now bordering on artificial intelligence (AI), as more intuitive functionality is coming into play. Some common examples of how AI is set to transform the entire sector include:
- Predictive text modelling.
- Automated marketing emails based upon past purchasing habits.
- The ability to community with a smart “bot” in the event of a question or an issue.
- Advanced encryption methods to protect personal financial details.
It is also interesting to note that many of the strategies mentioned above (such as predictive text) already exist in one form or another. This is why it is perfectly reasonable to assume that their presence will be further felt within the e-commerce community over the next few years. How do such benefits translate to the average online business and what are some of the hallmarks of a worthwhile solution?
“Organic” electronic transaction methods
It is quite odd to use the term “organic” in conjunction with modern online electronic transactions and yet, this feature is absolutely critical for those businesses that hope to enjoy a loyal customer base. Organic transaction methods simply signify the ability for a user to fully interact with the platform in question. In other words, they should feel comfortable navigating to different pages within a website and utilising the associated point-of-sale systems. How can this be accomplished?
First and foremost, the site in question should be very easy to navigate. The pages should be free of extraneous distractions so that the user can find exactly what he or she is looking for. Drop-down menus, clear contact information and one-click homepage return buttons will all help to enhance the visual attributes of a website.
The same holds true in regards to electronic transactions. Some of the main features associated with platforms such as Shopify include:
- Numerous payment methods.
- A page devoted to frequently asked questions.
- The ability to contact a live representative if needed.
- Proprietary company branding found within the payment platform itself.
It is clear to see that artificial intelligence is now playing a crucial role within the online retail community, and we are only witnessing the beginning of this revolution.