“The only constant in commerce is change.”- Shopify Commerce Trends 2023
The 2023 Commerce Trends report from Shopify details why the “unexpected in the new normal,” how inflation and other economic factors might affect the year ahead, and what growing expectations from consumers means for strategic planning. The report also outlines five trends to anticipate this year, in the following areas:
Improving customer experience is a top priority among companies surveyed.
Here are some highlights from the report, by the numbers:
While consumers expect more, including faster shipping, supply chain issues continue to make it difficult to meet that standard. One of the problems, the report states, is that Just in Time manufacturing models aren’t the best structure when it comes to supply chain disruptions. Some ideas they suggest for future-proofing your supply chain:
The report focuses on strategies to cut costs (and deal with inflation) while also increasing customer loyalty.
Brands are playing with different pricing strategies - including raising prices and/or offering new products at a higher price point. Companies are also testing out lowering prices to boost sales.
In either case Shopify recommends focusing on customer loyalty over the long haul as a key strategic focus.
“Although quick and deep cost cuts are tempting, brands should strike a balance between reducing immediate financial damage and investing in the future.”
Some of the ideas outlined in the report include:
One main idea the report notes for reducing overhead is warehouse automation, a concept that has now gone from nice-to-have to need-to-have.
Commerce companies are navigating changes to marketing as new restrictions with data privacy go into effect. Brands are moving toward first-party data as third-party cookies are being phased out.
One trend businesses are seeing is a reduction in their return on ad spend (ROAS) as consumer privacy gets better. There’s also been a significant increase in competition among advertisers.
A key trend that is producing positive results is regarding brands that are getting creative with collaborations and partnerships.
The Shopify report offers these marketing ideas:
This section of the report is ripe with good info. Below are five customer acquisition and retention strategies Shopify rounded up from the results of their survey:
The whole chapter on ecommerce is worth a read, particularly the section on “How to wow customers in the most interactive digital landscape yet.”
This part of the report really hones in on providing value and meeting customers where they are.
“Before, customers went to brands. Today, brands must go where their customers are. Brands would be wise to start adopting this behavior now.” - Harley Finkelstein | President, Shopify
Below is a summary of the retail trends from the report.