4 Ecommerce and Digital Marketing Trends to Expect in 2021

February 16, 2021
Riley Jane
Riley Jane

The pandemic changed the way we use the internet. Instead of turning to it for leisure-like activities like social gaming, we now use it for everything — including online shopping. Research reveals that online global retail sales will reach $6.5 trillion by 2022.

While this is great news for ecommerce businesses, the market has also become heavily saturated. And to help you stay ahead of the competition, here are four ecommerce and digital marketing trends to take advantage of this year.

Self-service platforms

The first step to any successful marketing campaign is to meet your customers where they’re at — online. For digital marketing, self-service platforms can help you do this efficiently and affordably.

Common self-service platforms like Google Ad Manager, Facebook Ads, and YouTube Ads allow marketers to place ads on these powerful platforms. Depending on the settings you place, algorithms will then send your ads to a specific demographic of users. Plus, these platforms allow businesses to control how much money they spend on their campaigns, so startups who can’t afford big marketing efforts won’t fall behind. You just have to be strategic about it!


For instance, digital marketer Neil Patel suggests ranking for less saturated keywords that are no less relevant to your products. You can also create more general content that can be sent out to a less targeted demographic.

Omnichannel selling

Omnichannel is different from the traditional multichannel approach. In a multichannel online strategy, you hard-sell products across multiple channels. Meanwhile, an omnichannel ecommerce model provides every opportunity to lead customers to the end of the buying process, allowing them to build their own purchasing journey.

Here, your marketing team should think about the following:

  • Where might customers encounter your brand? Is it social media? Search engines? The content should be enticing enough to lead them to the business’s website, app, or product page
  • Where can they learn more about the products? Put testimonials on as many platforms as you can, from the product page itself to social media
  • Are our pages or apps easy to use? The customer experience has to be seamless until they reach checkout

Among the three, prioritize the usability of your platforms. After all, no matter how many leads visit your website or app, people might just leave because they’re difficult to navigate.

Data analytics

Since more people are spending time online than ever, the number of data businesses can gather has exponentially increased, too. True enough, it’s estimated that over 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are being produced every day.

With so much information available, it’s only a matter of getting someone who can interpret the numbers into actionable insights. And fortunately for businesses, colleges continue to produce great analysts, despite distance learning becoming the new norm. In fact, online data analytics programs professors make it a point to give students practical knowledge, whether that’s on predictive modeling or data visualization. This approach ensures that learners can identify opportunities the moment they graduate, allowing them to deliver quality analytics from the get-go. Given that, startups who can’t afford to hire field-experienced analysts won’t have to worry about missing out on insights. Knowing the right ecommerce marketing channels and creating content that will resonate with your customers can be achieved with the proper data. There are a large variety of tools that help marketers make better use of their data as well, for example, Apteo helps ecommerce marketing teams predict which of their customers are ready to make repeat purchases and who are likely to churn.

Shoppable video ads

Video marketing has many perks, from longer viewership to more engagements. But its biggest contribution is how often it converts leads. Indeed, over 67% of customers admit to having made a purchase directly after watching a video.

One video marketing strategy to look into this year is shoppable video ads. These ads have embedded links in their content, letting viewers purchase products without leaving the video. But for this strategy to work, you need to carefully highlight your products’ best features without appearing like a hard sell. For example, luxury clothing brand Ted Baker used a spy video titled “Mission Impeccable” and placed clickable links for every piece of clothing featured.



Online furniture retailer Wayfair also does this with their DIY and How-To ads — though the links are only visible if you encounter the videos as an ad.



Find creative ways to sneak in your products into an engaging narrative.

Now that people spend more time online, the right digital marketing strategy can help ecommerce brands increase their sales. So be sure to research and test different strategies before picking up the one that customers respond to the most.

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Image: https://images.pexels.com/photos/35550/ipad-tablet-technology-touch.jpg

About the Author

Riley Jane
Riley Jane

Riley Jane is a Brooklyn-based digital marketing consultant with a passion for how technology is constantly changing the way we shop, work, and live. When she's not working, Riley enjoys urban gardening and crafts.

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