TL;DR: There are 6 major challenges facing Online Shopping (eCommerce) in 2023:
– Overall economic uncertainty
– Higher barrier to entry
– Bad performing website
– Limited payment choice
– Unreliable suppliers
– Lack of scalability for growing SMEs
The biggest threat for online shopping in 2023 seems to be the current economic climate: a struggling technology sector and ever-growing prices. While retailers are optimistic about a rebound, economists and experts are less so. Shops must strategize effectively to combat each challenge for eCommerce in 2023.
If you’ve been running an eCommerce store since 2021, congratulations! You just survived eCommerce’s worst-performing year in 2022. Don’t get ahead of yourself; there are even more challenges to online shopping waiting in 2023 for buyers and shop owners. Here are 6 key issues facing the eCommerce ecosphere in 2023.
Economic Uncertainty, Buyers Beware
It’s tough to predict a whole year of economic activities, but economists are not so optimistic about eCommerce’s recovery for 2023. A report from one eCom Market Researcher predicts only a middling 2.2% market increase in 2023, citing concerns over the U.S.’s unstable recovering economy and a post-pandemic market correction. Experts believe more people spent more time online shopping last year because of the 2022 global lockdown. As eager eCommerce buyers lose their online appetite, the prevalence of eCommerce as a must-have alternative to in-store shopping will be adjusted in favor of brick-and-mortar shops.
Higher Barrier of Entry for New eCommerce Shops
Whether you’re thinking about how to start an eCommerce store for your business or just happen to overhear someone make millions from dropshipping, sorry, it’s going to be more complicated than ever in 2023. Everyone’s favorite eCommerce hosting site (and least favorite eCommerce payment vendor), Shopify, increased its pricing plan earlier this year. New shop owners now have less competitive options for choosing a vendor. And with the recent *slight* collapse from the technology sector, eCommerce faces more technical problems and a slow feature release cycle this year. Higher prices and less reliable systems mean new online entrepreneurs face a higher barrier to entry. Not only so, but buyers might also be frustrated with the overpromise of online shopping in 2022 when the inevitable price increase shops must make to keep up with rising costs. Do we have to tab the *economic uncertainty* sign again?
BTW, Your Online Shopping Website Is Outdated
Did you know that 40% of consumers claim they would leave a website if it takes longer than 3 seconds for a page to load? Surprisingly, nearly 80% of these potential customers claim they will never return to a store that forced them to wait an extra couple of seconds! If your processing is not fast enough, you’ll lose nearly half of your customers (forever!) before they even get to your store.
DYK: 92.6% of customers cited the visuals of a website as the most critical factor influencing their buying decision.
One of the challenges to online shopping is building customers’ trust. People often regard the lack of confidence as one of the primary reasons for shopping elsewhere. In addition to improving your website’s overall “look,” you will increase potential customers’ confidence in your brand by:
- Adding detailed information about your brand’s goal, FAQs, refund policy, and delivery details to your store
- Including several high-resolution photographs and videos of your goods from various perspectives
- Use user-generated content in your online shop
Adding customer feedback to your product pages will make your customers even more likely to complete a purchase. In addition, authentic input from real-life customers will help you develop emotional connections with your customers, raising confidence in your brand.
Payment Choices Are Getting Narrower
Payment choice is how you make money as an eCommerce business. Choose one with low enough fees and quick for customers, and you’re good to go. Unfortunately, running an eCommerce store became more complicated in 2023. First, let’s talk about currency accessibility.
66% of consumers now shop cross-border. 1 in 4 customers would abandon a website if their currency is unavailable at checkout. With the eCommerce space growing significantly in APAC and other parts of the world, having multiple major global currencies is more important than ever.
However, having too much of a good thing might be detrimental to your business. An insightful post by Rick Watson – eCommerce Expert on Amazon’s latest checkout feature: Pay with Prime, sheds light on the overhyped payment option. Watson experienced less than satisfactory service with the new payment option, receiving the same item at a slower pace and a lesser quality on arrival.
E-commerce stores must now carefully choose the best payment and order delivery system for their customers.
The Reliability of Unreliable Suppliers
Don’t think too long about the eCommerce supply crisis of 2022, or the migraines will come back. While the issues of long shipping times, logistic failures, and trade shutdowns were prevalent in 2022, there has been a lack of real solutions to solve these problems in 2023. The global supply chain is likely to improve this year, but according to experts, land scarcity and the job markets in key shipping countries are not keeping up with the growing demands of Online Shopping for 2023.
So, here’s a PSA for Online Shop Owners for 2023: stock up on your inventory before sales seasons, or have options for Back Orders for a more effortless shopping experience for your customers.
SME Stores Are Struggling To Scale
Scalability in eCommerce is always a top challenge to overcome for SME businesses. Combined with rising operational costs and a constricting job market, scalability will only worsen for eCommerce stores in 2023.
This year, stores are moving in favor of optimizing operations with automation and machine. Compared to hiring and training, software brings more marginal benefits to growing SMEs and sets a foundation for future growth. Tools like Atom8 are helping BigCommerce store owners to offload 40-50% of their daily manual work with plug-and-play automation workflows. Combined with the lighting fast Machine Learning technologies of AI-generated content, online stores are in a technology arms race to fast-track their exponential growth in 2023.
Despite these seemingly daunting challenges to online shopping in 2023, knowing what you might face is the first step to rising above the competition. Our resident eCommerce experts can help you sort out any problems you might face with your online business. Reach out to us, or try out one of our eCommerce tools, Atom8, BackOrder, and OrderBooster, for free and enhance your online store today!