Canopy’s Top 10 Trends For Amazon Sellers to Watch in 2023
Updated August 18, 2023 — The first half of 2023 has already brought with it massive disruptions. To make sure you stay on top of the second half, check out this must-read guide!
Over the last few years, Zoom calls, online school, and virtual fitness classes were a mostly unwelcome part of our lives. As we continue to transition away from this anxious lifestyle, numerous business owners may be curious about what lies ahead.
That’s why I wanted to list 10 important ecommerce trends that stand a very good chance of impacting how you will run your business in the coming 12 months.
1. Augmented Reality is Changing How We Shop
Augmented reality (AR) technology enables consumers to “visualize” the product they’re considering purchasing without leaving their house. AR has significantly revolutionized the shopping journey in various sectors, including fashion, beauty, and home decoration.
Companies such as Nike, Home Depot, Target, and IKEA have begun to use virtual features into their platforms. These features utilize AI and AR technology. As a result, the shopping experience can be more like playing a video game than visiting a physical store.
Don’t like the idea of balancing awkwardly on one leg in a tiny changing room? Snapchat users can now try on clothing and accessories virtually with technology that responds to your own specific physical dimensions.
As Amazon continues to upgrade its Premium A+ content, how long will it be before Amazon tales the next big step and optimizes its platform for augmented reality?
2. Voice Search is Speaking to Buyers
Voice Search, using “speech” to search questions or give commands on the internet has exploded in the last few years. The rapid growth has been fueled by the advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning.
For example, Google search stats show that in 2013, its AI could recognize 77% of spoken words. Today, that figure is 97%.
That’s not only made the platform more intuitive for users, it’s also exponentially increased the value and marketability of voice search for advertisers.
According to eMarketer, last year over 40% of shoppers took advantage of voice search. With over 70% of respondents preferring voice-based queries over typed, the future seems clear.
3. Personalized Shopping Through AI
The constant improvements to AI and machine learning have also been behind the rise of automated, personalized shopping experiences.
This exciting (if occasionally troubling) technology has made it possible to continuously collect data about the way customers interact with websites or platforms. How the customer shops, what they buy, and how and when they make their purchases are all collected and made visible to the marketers. It’s really a hallmark of this technology that’s simply not possible when shopping in a brick and mortar store.
For example, the Brinks Home Security company has generated a huge amount of historical customer-level transaction data. Brinks wanted to find a way to use this information to drive growth. In just 24 months Brinks was able to increase their rate of A/B testing from a few tests a day to over 50,000 by taking advantage of AI-driven daily tests.
This ability to personalize customer touchpoints helped them to double their sales figures in just six months.
4. The Rise of Live and Social Platforms
The continual advances in artificial intelligence and big data have helped accelerate the use of Live selling and other strategies on a number of social platforms.
That’s why social commerce has become a big buzzword for 2023.
With livestream selling, a host demonstrates a product in a live online video either through a social media platform, or direct video calls with groups of customers.
In addition to prospective customers being able to “shop” (watch the feed) from wherever they want, with live commerce, they can interact with the personalities in real time, and seek the answers to any questions they might have. Then, they can make their purchase directly from the live stream shopping platform.
Last year, TikTok announced a new partnership to assist US merchants with advertising on the app, giving them access to core functions of the TikTok For Business Ads Manager without requiring them to leave their own business platform.
Now, Amazon’s own “Live” feature is catching fire. Amazon says that its Live feature allows sellers to, “Engage with shoppers in real-time and drive sales with interactive livestreams.” Using Amazon Live, sellers bring product recommendations to life by featuring them in their product carousel. To engage with their audience during the streams, sellers can take advantage of features such as product highlighting, live promotions, and interactive chat.
5. More Payment Options for 2023
In 2022, 49% of total ecommerce purchases were made with digital and mobile wallets. Although paying online continues to be very popular, ecommerce shoppers are constantly marketed to with new customized experiences to choose from.
Flexible point of sale payment methods are on the upswing. Everything from credit card payments, digital wallets, direct debits, and flexible payment plans are changing the way online sellers and entrepreneurs can get paid.
McKinsey’s POS Financing Survey, shows that approximately 60% of US consumers say they are likely to use POS financing over the next 12 months. Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) is an increasingly popular type of short-term financing that allows consumers to make purchases and pay for them incrementally, at a future date, and often interest-free.
There is steady momentum in the direction of a “super app,” similar to large China-based platforms. Apps such as China’s AliPay, India’s Paytm, Singapore’s Grab, Indonesia’s GoTo, Vietnam’s Zalo, and South Korea’s Kakao are combining shopping, payments, financing, together with banking products. That has made smartphones the nexus not just of social media and communication, but every aspect of a person’s life.
6. Keep the Sales Coming with Subscriptions
A new report from PipeCandy and Rodeo predicts that as many as 75% of DTC brands will have a subscription-based offering by 2023. It makes perfect sense. Once you’ve captured a single sale, why not streamline the process for yourself AND the buyer?
Subscription programs are more convenient for buyers and save time. They’re also a great way for sellers to plan for inventory and sales. With “committed” sales already in the pipeline, a portion of your inventory forecasting becomes much easier.
And, of course, Amazon has been paying attention!
With Amazon’s popular Subscribe and Save, sellers enjoy free standard shipping on auto-deliveries and the option to schedule deliveries on a specific Subscribe & Save delivery day. Eligible products often come at a discounted price on the Amazon and Amazon Marketplace price.
7. Sustainability Matters
Ecommerce businesses can see that the climate is changing. Because of that, there’s a new, growing awareness that sustainability isn’t just a fashionable stance for environmentalists to take, it’s now a key consideration in consumer purchases.
According to research from Forrester, over half of U.S. consumers consider their values when making shopping choices. It seems that across multiple generations, consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable products.
Increasingly, business owners are taking a strong position on climate change. Patagonia Founder and CEO, Yvon Chouinard just gave away a 3 billion-dollar company to combat climate change and protect undeveloped land around the globe. While it’s clear that not everyone will follow such a high path, more than ever before, buyers increasingly want their purchases to mean something.
With differentiation such an important aspect of making sales on Amazon, sustainability might just be a great way to make your product stand out.
8. Blurring the Line Between UGC and Micro Influencers
User-generated content (UGC) continues to grow in importance with 41% of US consumers claiming that they stream more user-generated content than TV shows or movies.
One of the easiest ways to do this is through influencer marketing. It’s become so prevalent that there are a number of companies such as Grin, Creator.co, Aspire, or Upfluence that are specifically designed to help entrepreneurs manage their partnerships with relevant, authentic influencers.
Often overlooked by larger, celebrity-focused brands, micro influencers blur the line between user generated content and affiliate marketing. Most importantly, they have a very high engagement with their fan-base.
Smaller, niche-aware influencers combine an established relationship AND a knowledge of a specific niche or area of expertise. That’s why “niche-influencers” have become an increasingly valuable component of an Amazon sellers’ marketing strategy.
9. Multichannel Selling is the Future
Multi-channel marketing blends multiple distribution and marketing channels in order to attract customers and stand out in the marketplace. The channels might include email, direct mail, websites, social media, live streams, and/or a retail storefront.
By doing this, not only do marketers and entrepreneurs expand their reach and increase engagement, the benefits of combining two or more of these channels creates exponential benefits. This will help make sure your ecommerce store stays ahead of the competition.
Take selling on Amazon for example. Recently Amazon has reacted to the influx of ecommerce sellers away from their marketplace and towards a number of off-Amazon platforms. According to many expert Amazon sellers, Amazon’s A10 algorithm is now adjusting all-important rankings upwards for sellers with a substantial off-Amazon presence.
Additionally, For sellers enrolled in Amazon Brand Registry and selling in Amazon’s US store, Amazon has rolled out a bonus for sales generated from non-Amazon marketing efforts.
Amazon’s Brand Referral Bonus is an opportunity to earn, on average, a 10% bonus of the sales price on sales generated from sales originating OFF of Amazon.
10. Zero-Party Data for the Win
Marketers know that to increase conversions, understanding a customer’s motivations and actions is where you need to start. For a long time, that has happened through the collection of third-party data.
When Apple rolled out its IOS 14 update limiting easy access to third-party data it sent ripples throughout the ecommerce marketing and media buying community. Earlier this year, Google announced its own privacy restrictions that will cut tracking across apps on its Android devices.
That’s why when it comes to digital marketing, sellers are going to have to be more proactive in gathering customer data through a variety of practices. Increasingly, marketers are dependent on what’s referred to as zero-party data.
Zero-party data is information from customers that they voluntarily and deliberately share with you. Essentially, zero-party data has been volunteered. You can source zero-party data from quizzes, pop ups, surveys, social media polls, product onboarding, contests, and account creation.
Sure, it’s different than we’re used to and involves a few more steps, but as with most things requiring a little extra effort, it’s worth it. It’s also a process that will separate those sellers truly determined to succeed from the rest.
Can’t Keep Up? Leave the Trendspotting to the Experts
With new changes hitting the world of ecommerce almost weekly, it can be hard to expect your team to keep up and still manage the day to day of running a business. To get help with developing a comprehensive strategy that keeps your brand on top of the latest changes, click here to talk to one of our ecommerce specialists today!
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