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The End of Free Returns? Top 10 eCommerce Trends That Will Impact Retailers and Consumers in 2019

Absolunet analyzed over 200 eCommerce initiatives to predict the 10 trends that will have the greatest impact in 2019

Absolunet reveals the top 10 eCommerce Trends that will impact North American retailers in 2019. The effects will be felt across the entire supply chain by brands, manufacturers, distributors, retailers and consumers alike.

Of the over 200 digital and eCommerce projects analyzed, examples come from major brands and retailers, including Absolunet clients Ashley Furniture, Stokes and others.

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The top 10 eCommerce Trends for 2019 are:

  1. ACTIVIST CONSUMERS: THE RISING PRESSURE OF ETHICAL ECOMMERCEConsumer values will strongly influence purchasing (and merchant) behavior: wasteful packaging, the environmental cost of 2-day shipping, ethical brands…
  2. THE END OF FREE RETURNS? Retail’s $400 billion a year elephant in the room is about to hit a tipping point: returns have increased 53% since 2015.
  3. SALES TAXES: THE TAX-FREE PARTY IS OVER FOR CONSUMERS AND MERCHANTS Consumers will have to pay applicable sales taxes on all their purchases, and merchants will have to manage sales taxes in multiple jurisdictions.
  4. MOBILE ECOMMERCE FASTER AS PROGRESSIVE WEB APPS BLUR LINES BETWEEN SITES AND APPSMobile eCommerce is about to get much, much faster and more fluid.
  5. SOCIAL MEDIA GETS TRANSACTIONAL  Consumers will be able to BUY, directly on social platforms.
  6. THE QR CODE STRIKES BACKNo longer app-dependant, the QR code will fulfill its potential and help brands provide product information.
  7. MAJOR RETAILERS BECOME MARKETPLACES TOO. Retailers will fight Amazon by becoming just like the eCommerce giant: a digital marketplace.
  8. IN-CAR ECOMMERCE: SHOPPING ON THE GO The new “Drive-to-store.”
  9. RETAILERS WILL HIRE THEIR FIRST AI EMPLOYEEAI will help retailers and merchants create more and better product content, improve SEO and merchandizing.
  10. PRODUCT CONTENT SYNDICATION. Brands and manufacturers reclaim control of their product content.

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“Merchants are continuously investing to better meet consumer expectations, and mobile continues to be a huge enabler,” says Charles Desjardins, Absolunet Partner and Executive Vice President. “We hope the top 10 eCommerce Trends report helps retailers, brand manufacturers and distributors gain valuable insight and helps them choose the right strategies and partners to bridge the eCommerce gap.”

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