3 Major Ecommerce Trends That Will Only Get Bigger in 2018

Desktop-driven ecommerce sales may be plateauing, but data from comScore shows that as a whole, online sales are booming. Sales from mobile devices are now leading the charge, with an annual growth rate (59%) that eclipses desktop (17%).

Ecommerce as a whole still seems to have plenty of space to grow before it hits a ceiling. Online retail still only makes up approximately 12% of total retail sales. This percentage continues to creep up year after year, though, with record-shattering shopping figures and new mobile trends providing shoppers with more accessibility, flexibility and security when it comes to purchasing products.

As we approach 2018 and what the future holds for digital merchants, it’s crucial to reflect and assess the ecommerce trends that have defined 2017 so far. More and more merchants are boasting omni-channel presences to reach buyers online, offline and on-the-go. Meanwhile, the importance of speedy shipping, social engagement and a lack of hidden fees remain paramount for high-performing retailers online.

But what will define digital merchants after the New Year? Let’s take a look at three current trends that will continue to transform the ecommerce landscape in 2018 and beyond.

A Rising Influx of Mobile Shoppers

Just as smartphone usage and sales continue to tick upward, mobile shopping is likewise expected to rise. Mobile devices currently account for 19% of all ecommerce sales in the United States; however, the figure is projected to rise to 27% by the end of 2018, according to an Invesp report.
This influx of mobile shoppers also presents new challenges to merchants, though. Considering that traditional desktops still outperform mobile devices when it comes to conversion rates, ecommerce brands are clearly need all the help they can get to close sales with mobile users.

The Boom of B2B Ecommerce

Although ecommerce is often discussed under the B2C lens, let’s not neglect the steady growth within the B2B space.
Projected to surpass $1 trillion in total sales by 2020, there’s no denying that B2B ecommerce still represents rocky territory for many brands. As merchants continue to iron out the finer details of pricing schemes, bulk shipping and quoting customers, streamlining the purchasing process remains a top priority for B2B ecommerce brands moving forward.
Configure-Price-Quote (CPQ) platform FPX, for example, helps to take the complexities of the B2B buyer’s journey and turn proposal request processes into a self-service endeavor. Instead of expecting sales prospects to leave their information for a custom quote or to receive follow up by phone, this tool allows site visitors to answer a series of questions that then feed into an algorithm to generate a personalized, instant proposal, so they can place orders on the spot.

More Prevalent Storefront Apps

In a response to the aforementioned challenge of appealing to mobile buyers, expect to see a new wave of mobile “storefront apps” to reach buyers on-the-go. This trend goes hand in hand with the need for merchants to have omnichannel presences, as well. Given that mobile users spend 86% of their time within apps versus mobile sites, perhaps branded native smartphone shopping apps are the key to converting those once-fickle customers.
After all, if a customer is willing to go through the effort of downloading a mobile app, chances are they’re loyal and trusting enough to make ongoing purchases. “App commerce” platform Poq recently found that storefront apps outperform mobile web conversion rates by 40%, support longer browsing sessions than even desktop web browsers and are twice as likely to drive repeat visits. This all makes sense given the game-changing functionalities that storefront apps offer, which include superior content personalization opportunities, push notifications and geolocation-integrated brick-and-mortar shopping recommendations.
Poq’s compelling solution, for one, offers a centralized content management system that merchants and marketers can use as a unified data hub that uses an API to automatically sync with analytics platforms, payment gateways, customer review platforms and more.

Defining Ecommerce for 2018 and Beyond

Nobody can truly predict the future in regard to ecommerce. However, these current trends will continue to heavily influence the space for the time being.
Regardless of what merchants might be selling, it’s clear that no shopping brand can afford to rest on its laurels. Just as ecommerce is constantly evolving to keep up with the demands and desires of consumers, so should merchants.

SOURCE: http://multichannelmerchant.com/blog/3-major-ecommerce-trends-will-get-bigger-2018/
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Features of eCommerce Technology

Electronic commerce, or eCommerce, refers to the purchasing and selling of goods or services via electronic means, such as the Internet or mobile phone applications. It may also refer to the process of creating, marketing, servicing and paying for services and goods. Businesses, governments and the public can participate in eCommerce transactions.


Technologies used in eCommerce require consumer interactions in order to make an individual feel as though he is an active participant in the transaction process. As a result, eCommerce technologies can adjust to each individual's experience. For example, while shopping online, an individual is able to view different angles of some items, add products into a virtual shopping cart, checkout by inputting his payment information and then submit the order.


Technologies within eCommerce allow for the personalization and customization of marketing messages groups or individuals receive. Pearson Education states that companies can base such messages on individual characteristics of a consumer. An example of personalization includes product recommendations based on a user's search history on a Web site that allows individuals to create an account.

Information Richness

Users can access and utilize text messages and visual and audio components to send and receive information. Pearson Education states that such aspects provide a rich informational experience in regards to marketing and the consumer experience. An individual may see information richness on a company's blog if a post contains a video related to a product and hyperlinks that allow him to look at or purchase the product and send information about the post via text message or email.

Universal Standards

Individuals, businesses and governments only use one set of technological, media and Internet standards to use eCommerce features. Consequently, universal standards help simplify interactions. An individual can see these standards while shopping online, as the process to purchase items is similar on Web sites that use eCommerce technologies. Similarly, when an individual creates an online account, the site generally requires an individual to create a username and password so he can access his account.


Because they are web-based, eCommerce technological features are available anywhere you can connect to the Internet at any time, including homes, offices, video game systems with an Internet connection and mobile phone devices. Because eCommerce is ubiquitous, the market is able to extend its traditional geographic boundaries and operating hours. An example includes the ability to access the Internet wherever there is a Wi-Fi hotspot, such as a cafe or airport. Moreover, individuals who have cell phones with data capabilities can access the Internet without a Wi-Fi connection.

Information Density

The use of eCommerce reduces the cost to store, process and communicate information, according to Pearson Education. At the same time, accuracy and timeliness increase; thus, making information accurate, inexpensive and plentiful. For example, the online shopping process allows a company to receive personal, shipping, billing and payment information from a customer all at once and sends the customer's information to the appropriate departments in a matter of seconds.

User-Generated Content

Social networks use eCommerce technologies to allow members, the general public, to share content with the worldwide community, according to Kurt Grashaw in an article for the Web site Merchant Circle. Consequently, consumers with accounts can share personal and commercial information to promote a product or service. When a company has a professional social networking account, a member of the same social network has the option of associating himself with the company or a product by saying he likes or recommends it. When an individual updates his status on a social networking account, he may also mention a product or company by name, which creates word-of-mouth advertising.

Global Reach

Technologies within eCommerce seamlessly stretch across traditional cultural and national boundaries and enable worldwide access. Pearson Education states that instead of just offering goods and services to a population within a specific boundary, businesses can market to and serve an international audience. The Internet and multilingual Web sites, as well as the ability to translate a Web page, allows international visitors all over the globe to access company Web sites, purchase products and make business interactions.

SOURCE: https://www.techwalla.com/articles/features-of-ecommerce-technology
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Types of e-commerce

Generally speaking, when we think of e-commerce, we think of an online commercial transaction between a supplier and a client. However, and although this idea is right, we can be more specific and actually divide e-commerce into six major types, all with different characteristics.

There are 6 basic types of e-commerce:

  1. Business-to-Business (B2B)
  2. Business-to-Consumer (B2C)
  3. Consumer-to-Consumer (C2C)
  4. Consumer-to-Business (C2B).
  5. Business-to-Administration (B2A)
  6. Consumer-to-Administration (C2A)

1. Business-to-Business (B2B)

Business-to-Business (B2B) e-commerce encompasses all electronic transactions of goods or services conducted ​​between companies. Producers and traditional commerce wholesalers typically operate with this type of electronic commerce.

2. Business-to-Consumer (B2C)

The Business-to-Consumer type of e-commerce is distinguished by the establishment of electronic business relationships between businesses and final consumers. It corresponds to the retail section of e-commerce, where traditional retail trade normally operates.
These types of relationships can be easier and more dynamic, but also more sporadic or discontinued. This type of commerce has developed greatly, due to the advent of the web, and there are already many virtual stores and malls on the Internet, which sell all kinds of consumer goods, such as computers, software, books, shoes, cars, food, financial products, digital publications, etc.
When compared to buying retail in traditional commerce, the consumer usually has more information available in terms of informative content and there is also a widespread idea that you’ll be buying cheaper, without jeopardizing an equally personalized customer service, as well as ensuring quick processing and delivery of your order.

3. Consumer-to-Consumer (C2C)

Consumer-to-Consumer (C2C) type e-commerce encompasses all electronic transactions of goods or services conducted ​​between consumers. Generally, these transactions are conducted through a third party, which provides the online platform where the transactions are actually carried out.

4. Consumer-to-Business (C2B)

In C2B there is a complete reversal of the traditional sense of exchanging goods. This type of e-commerce is very common in crowdsourcing based projects. A large number of individuals make their services or products available for purchase for companies seeking precisely these types of services or products.
Examples of such practices are the sites where designers present several proposals for a company logo and where only one of them is selected and effectively purchased. Another platform that is very common in this type of commerce are the markets that sell royalty-free photographs, images, media and design elements, such as iStockphoto.

5. Business-to-Administration (B2A)

This part of e-commerce encompasses all transactions conducted online between companies and public administration. This is an area that involves a large amount and a variety of services, particularly in areas such as fiscal, social security, employment, legal documents and registers, etc. These types of services have increased considerably in recent years with investments made in e-government.

6. Consumer-to-Administration (C2A)

The Consumer-to-Administration model encompasses all electronic transactions conducted between individuals and public administration.
Examples of applications include:
  • Education – disseminating information, distance learning, etc.
  • Social Security – through the distribution of information, making payments, etc.
  • Taxes – filing tax returns, payments, etc.
  • Health – appointments, information about illnesses, payment of health services, etc.
Both models involving Public Administration (B2A and C2A) are strongly associated to the idea of efficiency and easy usability of the services provided to citizens by the government, with the support of information and communication technologies.

Advantages of e-commerce

The main advantage of e-commerce is its ability to reach a global market, without necessarily implying a large financial investment. The limits of this type of commerce are not defined geographically, which allows consumers to make a global choice, obtain the necessary information and compare offers from all potential suppliers, regardless of their locations.
By allowing direct interaction with the final consumer, e-commerce shortens the product distribution chain, sometimes even eliminating it completely. This way, a direct channel between the producer or service provider and the final user is created, enabling them to offer products and services that suit the individual preferences of the target market.
E-commerce allows suppliers to be closer to their customers, resulting in increased productivity and competitiveness for companies; as a result, the consumer is benefited with an improvement in quality service, resulting in greater proximity, as well as a more efficient pre and post-sales support. With these new forms of electronic commerce, consumers now have virtual stores that are open 24 hours a day.
Cost reduction is another very important advantage normally associated with electronic commerce. The more trivial a particular business process is, the greater the likelihood of its success, resulting in a significant reduction of transaction costs and, of course, of the prices charged to customers.

Disadvantages of e-commerce

The main disadvantages associated with e-commerce are the following:
  • Strong dependence on information and communication technologies (ICT);
  • Lack of legislation that adequately regulates the new e-commerce activities, both nationally and internationally;
  • Market culture is averse to electronic commerce (customers cannot touch or try the products);
  • The users’ loss of privacy, the loss of regions’ and countries’ cultural and economic identity;
  • Insecurity in the conduct of online business transactions.

SOURCE: http://bloomidea.com/en/blog/types-e-commerce
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