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How Brands Can Keep Up With Fast-Moving Retail Trends

Michael Waters
The retail industry is flooded with new digital trends. Here are a few of the major online shopping trends from the past year.
Image from timeout.com

The Challenge Brands Face With Digital Shopping

Thanks to the rise of e-commerce and circumstances brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, the retail industry is flooded with new digital trends. For the easy to use functionality and convenience more consumers shop online, through desktops, smartphones, or other mobile devices.

To match this evolving shopping behavior, companies are investing in everything from SMS-based ordering to augmented reality, even in ads within video game metaverses!

For brands, the speed of change can be hard to keep up with—and it isn’t easy to know where, exactly, they should be putting their resources.

Here are a few of the major online shopping trends from the past year:

Everybody Loves BOPIS

U.S. retailers, from Target to Amazon, have been prioritizing Buy Online, Pick-Up In-Store (BOPIS). This centers around customers making online purchases and claiming their orders, offline, at brick-and-mortar stores.   

Even in an era of free, two-day shipping, U.S. consumers are embracing the convenience of in-store pickup. This year, 20% of online sales were picked up at a physical store (up from 16.8% in 2020.)

Social Commerce on the Rise

Instagram and TikTok now let users buy products through their mobile apps. 

As Apple’s new privacy features make ad-targeting more difficult, social media platforms across the spectrum are rushing to master social commerce. Snapchat recently launched shoppable mini-apps, including one with Verishop, and Twitter is even testing a buy button.

Livestream Shopping

Pinterest announced this month that it was creating Pinterest TV, a daily shopping show in the vein of QVC. Here's how it works:

Amazon, Nordstrom, Macy’s, Klarna, Walmart, and dozens of other online retailers have also been exploring livestream shopping as an e-commerce sales channel.

How Brands Can Adapt

These trends are changing where—and how—store shopping happens. Customers still want to be met where they are, and brands need to ensure a robust digital strategy to communicate with customers.

Here are some examples of how communication differs with online marketplaces: 

Example: SHEIN Leveraged Social Media to Be #1

Brands should embrace new trends. To remain relevant, they need to stay on top of how consumers' shopping habits are changing.

The ultra-discount apparel brand SHEIN, for instance, surpassed Amazon as the #1 shopping app this summer largely because of its savvy use of Instagram and TikTok advertising.

An Agile Solution

As brands explore new shopping channels (or even an omnichannel approach), they should have agile customer service options like Chatdesk Teams that can help them manage customer interactions no matter where they are.

Through a combination of artificial intelligence and human support, Chatdesk Teams helps brands respond to consumers (across different social platforms) in real-time and enhance the overall customer experience. Schedule a demo here to learn how Chatdesk can help you keep up with an evolving marketplace.


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