One thing I love about ecommerce is that it’s always changing.
Sure, most of the fundamental principles of marketing stay the same, but the technology, the platforms, the customer’s expectations — they’re constantly evolving.
Which means you’ve never really “made it.” The work is never done.
You have to keep learning, keep paying attention, and — very importantly — keep listening to the smart people around you.
I found myself in a room of smart people recently, and I asked them what they thought about the future of ecommerce.
Here’s what they had to say.
Dennis Yu (CTO, BlitzMetrics)
“In 3 years, ecommerce is going to be frictionless.
Right now you still have to log in; you have to be able to choose the things you want; you have to be able to evaluate…
But imagine a future when bots are doing the buying for you. They’re taking into account the things you prefer, and they know what you need before you need it.
It’s not just Amazon extending their store to retail; it’s about bots buying from bots.
It’s about being able to see what your friends are doing. Say you’re about to go to dinner with a friend — the bot can recommend items you can bring based on their preferences.”
John Lee Dumas (Fire Podcast)
“I think gone are the days where you’re going to have a broad product or service in the ecommerce category that’s going to do really well.
Because we live in this day and age with Amazon, Shopify, and Facebook, where people can get exactly what they want. They don’t need to get something that’s a good fit, they can get something that’s a perfect fit.
So as an ecommerce store owner with a product or service, you have to be thinking, ‘What is that perfect fit for that certain segment of the audience?’
Create that micro product for them. That’s going to dominate that market.
Then create product extensions off of that.”
James Schramko (Author, Work Less, Make More)
“When you think of ecommerce over the next few years, you have to consider that companies like Amazon are going to get more of a vice grip on the general market.
It’s going to get bigger and stronger.
So it would be ideal to differentiate yourself in a way that is not putting yourself in their cross hairs, and that makes you an ideal target to acquire.
Forge your own ground as quickly as possible; find something unique that offers an emotional element or a story element that makes a customer have a strong feeling toward your brand.”
Kim Walsh Phillips (CEO, Elite Digital Group)
“Because all our interactions are becoming more social and requiring more social proof, I see ecommerce incorporating more elements of video and referral-based content.
So instead of just searching on a site for something I’m going to buy, I’m going to look for which of my friends have recommended it.
Who is pointing to a different product I might buy?
Can I see what my experience might be like if I purchased the product?”
Lindsay Marder (Co-founder, DigitalStrategyBootcamps.com)
“I see ecommerce trends in the next 3 years going towards the personality and the voice behind the product.
This has been really popular in info products for as long as I can remember, but now with physical products, you need to give customers a face and a personality so they have reason to trust you and buy your product.”
0:10 Imagine a future when bots are doing the buying for you
0:36 Gone are the days where you’re going to have a broad product or service in the ecommerce category that’s going to do really well
1:37 Find something unique that offers an emotional element or a story element that makes a customer have a strong feeling toward your brand
1:46 All our interactions are becoming more social and requiring more social proof
2:27 You need to give customers a face and a personality so they have reason to trust you and buy your product