eCommerce Success

2023 Ecommerce Trends To Pay Attention To

May 19, 2023

The last 3 years have been anything but ordinary for ecommerce businesses. A global pandemic, lockdowns, supply chain woes, high inflation, and now a recession (whether we're in one or it is imminent). So, writing a post on 2023 ecommerce trends feels a little silly as we're not psychic, although we wish we were and we definitely would have warned you about the above issues! Regardless of all of this, we’re still going to use whatever physic powers we do have to look into the future and share with you 4 ecommerce trends we see coming in 2023. And, if I were you, I would hop on as many of these as you can as quickly as possible if you want to stay competitive!

1. More brands embrace headless commerce

More brands will go headless in 2023 to gain more control and flexibility over the shopping experience.

At Rally we are witnessing this shift towards headless commerce and the reasons make so much sense. 

  • The ability to deploy changes faster without having to do a bunch of workarounds from their current traditional system 
  • Achieving faster site speeds across both desktop and mobile to retain more customers and better Google search rankings
  • The need to apply personalized shopping experiences that they don't have the option to implement with their current setup

And we’re not the only ones thinking this is going to be a big shift next year. Alexey Gaverdovskiy, Customer Relationship Manager at Atarim, a nifty tool for website developers and teams, says, "We think that one of the biggest trends in eCommerce in 2023 is going to be delivering unique experiences on the web – whether that is through headless frontends connected to systems like [traditional ecommerce platforms], we're starting to see early signs of people investing in the tech behind their site as one of the things that set them apart and allows them to deliver a better buyer experience than other stores, something which is particularly important in most verticals because there are retailers, i.e.Amazon that already makes buying with them so much easier."

Some merchants are starting small with headless solutions that bridge the gap between fully-headless and traditional platforms, such as our Rally checkout. This gives them a headless checkout solution, which allows them to increase their average order value through post-purchase offers and create a faster checkout for their customers, without having to move their entire store to a headless infrastructure. 

While, on the other hand, we see merchants diving head-first into fully-headless options for their stores, such as moving off of a traditional platform (such as Shopify) and onto a platform like Swell.  

If you want to get a jump-start on the 2023 headless commerce trend, we advise that you take a look at this easy-to-read article about headless so you can decide what & when this might be the right avenue for you.

2. An emphasis on first party data 

First party data: I know you have heard of this before, but it is definitely going to be a HUGE part of 2023 for ecommerce merchants. With major changes to advertising privacy policies that have popped up over the past couple of years, having your own data for marketing your brand to ideal customers is going to be a big part of your 2023 efforts if you want to see year-over-year growth. 

Bethan Vincent has over 10 years experience advertising for various ecommerce brands. As a fractional CMO at Open Velocity, a successful marketing and strategic consulting agency, she has seen a dramatic shift in ecommerce brand advertising needs. We asked her what she thinks is in store for 2023 and immediately she hopped into the best ways for ecommerce brands to get attention. 

"One of the big trends we are seeing in our ecommerce clients is a focus on extending customer LTV through better first party data capture, remarketing, and customer nurture programs. This is in part being driven by increasing paid acquisition costs, which are prompting ecommerce brands to really look at maximizing spend and monetizing the customers they already have.

First party data strategies feed into this beyond purely reacting to changes in tracking capabilities as ecommerce brands are increasingly realizing that the relationships they have with clients on social/paid platforms are fragile and subject to uncontrollable changes. They therefore want to own their customer relationship directly."  

Simply put, your 2023 focus on first party data means you will no longer be as dependent on the big ad platforms and major social media platforms to communicate with your customers. You can communicate with them via other means, such as email and SMS campaigns, which can strengthen customer trust and loyalty all while lowering your customer acquisition costs..  

For example, let's say you started your business primarily selling through Amazon FBA. You also had a BigCommerce store but you got really good at both Amazon SEO and Amazon PPC ads, and suddenly 90% of your sales each month are coming through Amazon.

  • What happens if Amazon's algorithm changes and one of your best-selling products falls out of favor?
  • What happens if Amazon removes one or more of your product listings?
  • What if a new competitor comes on the scene and can outspend you on Amazon ads?
  • What happens if you get blacklisted from Amazon?

All of these what-ifs questions can and have happened to FBA sellers. 

Now, if you have invested time to get first-party data from any customer buying through your BigCommerce store. It means you still have a way to contact them if any of the what-ifs above were to happen on Amazon. So by diversifying your channels and focusing on getting as much first party data as possible, you will set yourself up for success across any channel you choose to sell on.

3. Creative ways to gain attention 

And speaking of selling on various channels….2023 is going to be about using your brand voice to stand out and grab the attention of your ideal customers. With so many viewing options for consumers now-a-days, being able to secure longer attention times from them is an art that brands will have to try and test continuously until they get it right. 

In our chat with Kaleigh Moore, an expert SaaS content writer in the ecommerce space  she predicts ecommerce stores are going to have to spend time garnering more attention. "I think in 2023 we're going to see more gamification and interactive shopping experiences in the ecommerce landscape. The reason: As attention spans shorten, brands will have to find more engaging ways to interact with customers."

It’s hard to win the attention-game, especially as a brand. But just because you’re selling something doesn’t mean you can’t get the attention of your consumers in a fun way. Being able to create an interactive shopping experience for 2023 will help you utilize your first-party data and channel strategy tactics to draw in your ideal consumer. Things like product quizzes, personalized recommendations, and even going so far as to have your customers “try on” your products via an augmented reality (AR) shopping experience will give your brand a big leg up in the attention space. And - just to come full circle here, these tactics for attention will also help to increase your first party data collection efforts. 

4. The role of AI in online shopping 

Every week in 2022, it seems like there is yet another artificial intelligence (AI) product launch or announcement (Hello, ChatGPT!). 

Tools can now write short-form copy, create graphics, and even prodive personalized search recommendations. The list of AI products coming out is growing rapidly and we expect this trend to continue into 2023, providing more tools and competition in this space.

So, how does AI affect your ecommerce business? Savvy ecommerce brands can leverage AI tools to help with everything from brainstorming new marketing ideas, to writing clever instagram captions, to repurposing templated product descriptions. Simply put, it is about being able to get more done in a short amount of time, therefore putting you ahead of your competition and staying ahead of the technology curve. 

Key takeaways 

The ecommerce brands that focus on the fundamentals like knowing their numbers and having healthy cash flow, investing in first party data, and utilizing new technology to improve their marketing and consumer reach will be in the best position to excel in 2023. 

What do you think 2023 has in store for ecommerce? 

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Jordan Gal
Founder / CEO