Beth Thompson

Future of eCommerce: Key insights from's session “Navigate the new normal"

James Grainger, VP Commercial Partnerships at joined us for the 6th session in our Future of eCommerce series, to discuss how to navigate the new normal using eCommerce strategies for innovative growth.

If you missed the session, you can access a recording by filling out the form below, but we’ve rounded up some key points for you!

The future is here

Between May 2019 and May 2020, saw a 250% increase in the volume of orders processed through their platform - there has already been huge uptake in eCommerce due to the restrictions the pandemic has placed on the globe. However, brick and mortar stores have obviously taken a hit. Virtual agility, multi-speed management and the ability to pivot and reimagine strategies is the key to recovering revenue in the ‘new normal’.

It’s been reported that we have seen 10 years worth of eCommerce acceleration in the past 3 months and consumer demand is at its peak - meaning companies are more likely to be selected by the consumer if the digital experience delivered is outstanding.

The reopening of physical stores

Since the non-essential stores have reopened we’ve seen confidence in consumer public health improve due to the measures that the retailers have in place, however, there will continue to be a tricky balance of managing risk against public health - driving the ongoing need for eCommerce due to future risk of a second or local waves.

Consumer spending habits will evolve

There has been an obvious forecasted reduction (19.4%) in revenue from bricks and mortar stores when compared to 2020, but a predicted 16.3% increase in eCommerce - meaning minimal, yet significant impact to the retail sector as a whole.

The Centre for Retail predicted an initial splurge from consumers in brick and mortar sales as non-essential retail opened up.

At Visualsoft, in June, we saw a 65% increase in revenue through the platform - blowing the initial prediction increase out of the water and showing no signs of slowing now that the shops are back open!

The acceleration of Digital Payments

The SARS outbreak in 2003 drove innovation in digital payments and eCommerce, with Taobao, and Alipay being formed around this time.

Similarly, in the last couple of months, a surge has been seen in contactless payments, with many businesses actually refusing cash payments to limit the chance of infection. have already seen an increase in the adoption of Apple and Google pay, due to the safety concerns with the passing of cash - and predict that people will begin to use this more frequently online too due to familiarity.

So, what now? What strategies should businesses implement from here?

Lean into your data

  • Know your customer: keep on top of where they are coming from and from what devices.
  • Know your website flow: review how easily a customer can travel along the conversion funnel once they have made it to your website.
  • Know your business: you know your business better than anyone else - now is the time to review the product you are selling and how it relates to the experience you can create for purchase.

Personalise your customer experience

  • Talk their language: detect where they are based, or let them select the desired language.
  • Sell in their currency: let them purchase in the currency they want to transact in
  • Make them feel safe: demonstrate why the customer can trust you over anyone else

Remove friction from the checkout

  • Automate data collection, meaning customers don’t have to run through the process
  • Default for the Apple Pay-ready customer to speed up the process for the customer
  • Convert more buyers by upstreaming through identifying and fulfilling customer needs

Empower your customers to pay how they want to

  • Offer local payment methods, particularly if you are selling into other markets. If you don’t use local payment methods, you may be stopping conversion from those areas
  • Consider AOV and flexible payment methods
  • Improve first-time purchase conversion, eliminating any hurdles

Digital payments in the new normal

  • Some companies have been seeing an increase in chargebacks which has often been attributed to the increase in demand on companies and couriers, meaning some customers open a dispute. As a merchant, it’s wise to keep your refund policy up to date to allow additional time for resolution and to make the process as simple as possible from a customer experience point of view.
  • Shift the risk by enabling 3DS2 on your website. This helps to reduce the number of fraudulent transactions by requesting information about the consumer to prove the transaction is legitimate.

Payment optimisation

  • Streamlining your payment costs can help to understand the cost of business.
  • Scaling your back end process by ensuring data can be consolidated easily to ensure that your system can cope with the increase effectively.
  • Reduce declined payments by reviewing any subscription services - for example, if your subscription is usually taken out before payday, in order to reduce declined payments it could be wise to review the day the payment is taken out.

Access a recording of the full webinar by filling out the form below.

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