November 24, 2021
As the number of people shopping online continues to grow exponentially,
e-commerce is changing and expanding rapidly. We've compiled a list of the most critical facts and figures so you can get a sense of the huge trends that are set to impact the industry in 2022 and beyond. Whether you're an experienced e-commerce brand or just getting started, you can use this data to fine-tune your marketing strategies and stay one step ahead of your competition.
According to a recent cross regional survey, the United Nations found that the pandemic has significantly impacted online shopping habits. The survey data reveals that consumers have increased their online shopping practices, with 52% of those surveyed agreeing they now shop online more and 53% indicating they will continue those practices moving forward.
Key takeaways: With consumers flocking online, there are more opportunities to make money online than ever before. For e-commerce businesses, now is the perfect time to expand, refresh and make updates to better meet changing customer needs and shopping habits.
According to a recently published report by Statista, the global e-commerce market will reach $5.4 trillion in revenues by 2022, up from $4.9 trillion in 2021. That’s a rise of $500 billion in just one year. What’s more, in 2022, well over 2.14 billion people globally are expected to buy goods and services online.
Key takeaways: If you’re looking to expand your current e-commerce business or are planning to start one in the next year, the good news is that there will be no shortage of opportunities. However, be warned. Competition is fiercer than ever.
With an estimated 792.5 million digital buyers in 2021, China is by far the world’s biggest e-commerce market, accounting for 52% of total worldwide e-commerce sales. Astonishingly, in 2022, China’s e-commerce sales will surpass 50% of total retail sales in the country. The US is the second largest
e-commerce market, accounting for 19% of global e-commerce sales. After the US and rounding out the top five largest markets are the UK, Japan, and Germany.
Key takeaways: While it’s reasonable to want to target markets with the most buyers and highest revenues, China is an extremely difficult market to penetrate. Sometimes it’s better to hit emerging markets that have high growth rates and growing e-commerce adoption but less competition.
The US e-commerce market is expanding rapidly as more people turn away from physical shops and shop online instead in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. By the end of 2021, more than 263 million US consumers will have spent an estimated $933 billion on e-commerce, with e-commerce sales equaling just over 15% of total retail sales in the country. The apparel, accessories, furniture, food and beverage, health, and personal care categories will all grow more than 20% YoY in 2021. In 2022, the US e-commerce market is expected to surpass one trillion dollars for the first time.
Key takeaways: The US offers a vast market filled with consumers with high purchasing power and a rapidly growing affection for online shopping. It’s also considered by many to be a business friendly market that’s relatively easy to navigate compared to others. Overall, the US provides fantastic opportunities for every e-commerce merchant seeking growth.
The B2B e-commerce market is evolving rapidly and is expected to surge in the coming years. According to an in-depth research study by Grand View Research, the Global B2B E-Commerce Market will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.7% between 2021-2028. Much of this growth will come from major B2B e-commerce marketplaces such Amazon, Alibaba, Rakuten, Mercateo, Walmart, and IndiaMART.
Key takeaways: The global B2B market offers vast opportunities for
e-commerce merchants, but significant challenges exist. Global marketplaces are likely to continue to dominate for the foreseeable future. Additionally, the B2B buying process often involves more than one decision-maker, and buying cycles are usually much longer than B2C. B2B transactions are also more complex, with buyers demanding flexible payment terms.
With approximately 6.4 billion smartphone users worldwide, it’s no wonder that the use of mobile devices to shop online is soaring. By the end of 2021, global sales from m-commerce will reach $3.56 trillion, with the global share of
m-commerce in e-commerce increasing to 73%, up from 59% in 2017.
Key takeaway: With most global shoppers opting to shop on their mobile devices, every e-commerce site should be optimised for mobile or risk losing out on sales. This means having a mobile-friendly design, navigation, and content that works well with a small screen.
A new technology trend is emerging, and it looks like it could be here to stay. Voice shopping is gaining momentum as the next wave of e-commerce, and it may be one of the biggest things to take off since the smartphone. According to an OC&C Strategy Consultants report, the number of voice shoppers is expected to increase by 55% in 2022. Voice e-commerce sales are expected to reach $40 billion in the US and $5 billion in the UK alone.
Key takeaways: By enabling voice commerce, merchants can cater to the growing number of shoppers choosing to use smart devices and smartphone assistants and offer the ultimate convenient shopping experience. With voice shopping still in its infancy, e-commerce businesses that implement voice commerce abilities now can also stand out from competitors.
The growth of live shopping - primarily through major social media platforms like Facebook, Tik Tok, and Instagram will be a significant driver for
e-commerce in the years to come. These platforms and others are rapidly evolving to facilitate live streaming and social e-commerce so users can buy products from third-party retailers without leaving their apps. With the proven success of live shopping in China, e-commerce businesses worldwide are closely following to tap into this growing trend. In China alone, sales from live shopping are expected to reach $423 billion by 2022, with the apparel, fashion, and beauty categories driving much of this growth.
Key takeaways: As online shopping grows and becomes more competitive,
e-commerce brands need to look for new ways to stand out and interact with customers. This is where live shopping comes into play. Live shopping brings a whole new experience to the customer by allowing consumers to interact with an e-commerce brand in real-time.
Visual commerce is an emerging trend in the e-commerce industry as consumers look for improved online experiences and greater convenience. Visual commerce uses user-generated content, interactive videos, and augmented reality instead of simply showing static product photos. According to Shopify, by using 3D or 360-degree product images, you can increase conversions by up to 250%.
Key takeaways: E-commerce businesses should look to leverage visual commerce to increase sales by investing in new tools and strategies to deliver a more engaging and interactive buying experience that can increase conversion rates.
Consumers are demanding more than ever for brands to be responsible not just for what they produce but also for how they produce it. According to Accenture, 33% of consumers rank sustainability as one of the top three deciding factors when making a purchase. Several studies have also found that consumers are willing to pay more for eco-friendly products.
Key takeaways: As environmental concerns drive big changes in consumers' shopping habits and play a growing role in purchasing decisions, e-commerce businesses will need to communicate their brand values more clearly and actively show how they are reducing their carbon footprint by investing in sustainable and ethical practices.
While debit and credit cards remain the most popular payment method in markets such as the US, digital and mobile wallets are an increasingly popular payment method worldwide, already accounting for more than 44.5% of
e-commerce transactions. By 2024, digital and mobile wallets are set to account for more than one out of two e-commerce transactions worldwide.
Key takeaways: With such explosive growth, e-commerce businesses must offer the right mix of local digital and mobile wallets at the checkout to avoid high cart abandonment rates and remain competitive.
In recent times, the number of payment options has been steadily increasing. One of the most popular is Buy Now Pay Later. Buy Now Pay Later is a flexible payment solution that allows customers to purchase products or services today and pay for them in installments over time. Over in the UK, Buy now pay later (BNPL) is the fastest growing online payment method, with a growth rate double that of bank transfers and more than triple that of digital wallets. Buy Now Pay Later is also taking off in the US, where more than one-third of consumers have used a BNPL service. In Australia, data shows that 87% of consumers between 22 and 44 have expressed interest in BNPL. In the US, more than one-third of consumers have used a BNPL service.
Key takeaways: Buy Now Pay Later solutions have been proven to dramatically help increase conversion rates and revenues, especially for more expensive items and larger purchases. Offering Buy Now Pay Later solutions at the checkout is something every merchant should explore - especially merchants selling high-priced products.
Fraud is a fact of life for online merchants. Almost 89% merchants surveyed in a Worldpay from FIS Global Payment Risk Mitigation Report reported having lost revenue to payment fraud in 2020, with nearly 38% of merchants surveyed losing more than 6% of their revenue to payment fraud. Another widely quoted study found that each $1 in fraud costs e-commerce merchants in the United States $3.60 in total expenses. Staggeringly, global losses from payment fraud are projected to cost $40.62 billion in 2027.
Key takeaways: Fraud is a growing concern for every e-commerce merchant, whether they know it or not. To reduce the impact of fraud, merchants must understand the different types and implement the proper detection and prevention strategies. At a minimum, this means using a payment gateway with a secure, fraud-resistant checkout that can prevent certain fraud chargebacks and bring your business in line with the latest payment security standards and legislation.
Free shipping has become something that consumers have come to expect when shopping online. In fact, 66% of consumers now expect free shipping for all online orders. If these expectations are not met, the impact can be significant. According to the Baymard Institute, 49% of people abandon their shopping cart because extra costs at checkout such as shipping, taxes, and fees are too high. However, consumers don’t only expect free shipping. They want fast shipping too. 54% of consumers aged under 25 said that same-day shipping is their number one purchase driver.
Key takeaway: With free and fast shipping such an integral part of consumer buying decisions, having a clear shipping policy from the get-go and offering free shipping is critical to increase sales, reduce cart abandonment rates and boost loyalty.
When it comes to generating sales, few resources are more valuable than online search. According to BrightEdge, 70% of commerce journeys begin with consumers scanning online search engine results pages (SERP). In fact, 43% of e-commerce traffic comes just from organic Google search alone. The bad news is that only 25% of users visit the second page of a search engine, so getting on the first page is critical.
Key takeaway: Investing in SEO to put your business front and centre in search is key to driving traffic and boosting sales. Every e-commerce business needs an effective SEO strategy that targets the right keywords, uses valuable content, and optimises product pages and images based on user search criteria.
The Baymard Institute calculated data from over 40 studies and found the average cart abandonment rate to be 69.57%. That means for every 10 shoppers, seven won’t complete their purchase. The main reasons for this worrying statistic include:
When all is said and done, it’s estimated that e-commerce stores lose $18 billion in sales revenue each year because of cart abandonment.
Key takeaway: Having a high cart abandonment rate is painful for e-commerce businesses. Fortunately, several actionable steps can be taken to reduce or even eliminate cart abandonment. These include offering free shipping, being upfront and transparent with costs, having a straightforward and quick checkout process, and providing a range of local payment options.
Consumers have grown accustomed to shopping from anywhere and expect a seamless experience when doing so. With 73% of buyers reporting to use multiple channels during their shopping process, providing a seamless omnichannel experience is critical for every e-commerce business. It's estimated that e-commerce businesses with effective omnichannel customer engagement retain an average of 89% of their customers, compared to 33% for companies with weak omnichannel engagement.
Key takeaway: If you’re not taking an omnichannel approach, you’re likely missing out on substantial revenue. Analyse how your customers interact with your brand and create a unified e-commerce experience so your customers can shop no matter which digital device or platform they are using.
Fashion and apparel, including clothing, shoes, bags, and accessories, is the most popular B2C e-commerce market segment worldwide, with sales predicted to reach over $1 trillion by 2025. The largest segments after fashion and apparel, include toys, electronics and media, food and personal care, and furniture and appliances.
Key takeaways: With fashion the fast-growing segment of e-commerce, it can be tempting for e-commerce merchants, especially those just starting out, to create an e-commerce fashion brand. However, fashion is a saturated market with lots of competition. Standing out and competing with global brands will be a challenge many small businesses won’t be able to overcome.