With over 12 million eCommerce sites worldwide and around 576,000 new websites created daily, the eCommerce industry is growing rapidly. If you run an online business, you get to experience the shifting business landscape firsthand, so it’s essential to be prepared for the changes.
Most notably, the global pandemic has been the biggest catalyst for the eCommerce boom in the last year. Consumers have embraced new shopping habits, and it forced companies to adapt quickly.
General eCommerce Trends 2021
Even pre-pandemic, eCommerce has been growing in popularity due to the rapid technological advances around us. Online stores have made shopping more convenient and accessible to users, and as businesses continue to improve their services and platforms, eCommerce will become increasingly integrated into our daily lives.
Here are some statistics about the rise of eCommerce over the years:
- U.S. eCommerce sales reached $794.5 billion in 2020 — a growth of 32.4% YoY. (eMarketer)
- In 2021, over 2.14 billion people worldwide are expected to buy goods and services online. (Statista)
- Around 95% of all purchases are expected to be via eCommerce by 2040. (Nasdaq)
Consumer Behavior Statistics
With the pandemic resulting in strict stay-at-home orders, many consumers turned to online shopping to buy food and other essentials. As a result, online restaurant orders skyrocketed, and purchased online, pick up in-store (BOPIS) orders grew 59% in August 2020, a 259% increase YoY.
With convenience and delivery impacting brand loyalty, eCommerce businesses must focus on improving customer service in 2021. Below are statistics on consumer behavior and preferences to help you find strategies to attract and retain customers.
- In 2020, U.S. consumers spent over 14 billion hours online shopping. (Adobe)
- 98.1% of shoppers say delivery impacts their brand loyalty. (Retail TouchPoints)
- 77% of consumers say they would shop more from a website to chat with an associate. (LivePerson)
- 84% of shoppers reported that they are unlikely to shop with a brand again after a poor delivery experience. (Retail TouchPoints)
- Consumers prioritize convenience over cost —they’re willing to spend more to get what they need. (Deloitte)
Impact of COVID-19 on e-Commerce
When COVID-19 hit and caused many brick-and-mortar stores to shut down, many businesses and individuals started creating online stores. With the dramatic increase in online shopping over the last year, some companies could thrive since they seized the opportunities to boost online sales.
Here are some trends on how the pandemic has impacted the eCommerce industry, which can help you plan for your business’s future.
- Over 90% of shoppers reported that their online shopping frequency increased due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (DealAid)
- Due to the pandemic, 13% of consumers said they were increasing their use of in-store pickup and drive-up options. (NPD)
- In April 2020, online grocery shopping was around 77% higher than before the pandemic. (NPD)
- When stores closed in April 2020, consumers made smaller purchases and prioritized buying essentials online. (Adobe)
- At the beginning of the pandemic, 30% of footwear sales were online, but physical stores’ shutdown increased online sales to almost two-thirds of footwear sales generated online in April. (NPD)
- Digital restaurant orders increased by 138% in May 2020 compared to the previous year. (NPD)
The global pandemic has amplified the importance of eCommerce. Purchases that were traditionally made in person have shifted online. Even after lockdown orders were lifted, consumers continued to shop digitally and from their mobile devices.
If your business doesn’t have an online presence yet, you should start creating one to keep up with the eCommerce industry’s pace. It is now possible for anyone to create an eCommerce site if you have the right tools and resources.
Keep these eCommerce trends in mind as you continue to build your eCommerce business and take advantage of digital tools and social platforms to enhance your customers’ shopping experience.