Today more than ever, e-commerce is a channel that no retailer can ignore. Because of this, we have recently published some articles that focus on optimizing online sales fronts with compelling content on product pages. But product content aside, what are some of the biggest ecommerce trends right now? To do this, I reached out to Hans Tung, Managing Partner of GGV Capital, whose early-stage investment portfolio includes consumer finance company Affirm, home fitness electronics brand Peloton, shopping app Wish and e-commerce startup Poshmark. Here are three of Tung’s top ecommerce trends right now.
Amazon continues its rapid growth, but so does Shopify
“Five or ten years ago the debate between Amazon and Walmart and Amazon against eBay was, but you don’t see that anymore,” says Tung. Instead, it’s Amazon versus Shopify. “Amazon is this £ 800 gorilla who is starting to make its own private label versions of products that sell well on Amazon. Now all brands are concerned that putting all the eggs in one basket runs the risk of helping Amazon get more data to develop private label versions of their products. ”As a result, brands and retailers are increasingly turning to Shopify for their e-commerce – Launch initiatives in a way that doesn’t necessarily create greater competition from Amazon or even Facebook.
Buy-now-pay-later financing replaces credit card transactions
As e-commerce grows, so do modern layaway plan financing services like Affirm, Afterpay, and Klarna, which have doubled in just a year. One of the reasons for this growth is that, unlike credit cards, buyers do not have to pay any additional interest when using buy-it-later services. “Instead of spending money on marketing,” says Tung, “these services pay the interest for you.” Interestingly, this financing trend started in Brazil, where more buy-it-now-pay-later transactions are performed than any other home appliance country. “More and more people and brands are adopting it,” he says. “Peloton did well with Buy-Now-Pay-Later; it is one of the fastest growing areas of the peloton business. I can also see that it is doing well in appliance retailing; People would prefer to pay off large purchases over 24 or 36 months. “
Livestream shopping is huge in China,
but it’s not quite ready for prime time in the US – yet
“Amazon and eBay started in the US, but now we’re coming full circle with more e-commerce and innovation happening in China,” says Tung. “Livestream shopping is growing in popularity in the US, but it’s still small in terms of volume.” Even with Facebook, YouTube, TikTok, and other live video giants dipping their toes into the livestream shopping arena, “it takes more refinement and iterations to get it right,” says Tung.
There are certainly more gems of e-commerce wisdom like this one from Tung and other experts in the field. We will be posting these on the pages of this magazine and online at Dealerscope.com in the coming weeks and months.
Tom is the editor-in-chief of Dealerscope.