7 eCommerce Trends to Implement This Year

Staying current with the latest eCommerce trends and evolving technology is crucial for long-term growth. 

This year, key innovations like blockchain for supply chain transparency, gamified loyalty programs, and AR (augmented reality) shopping experiences are set to redefine how online businesses operate and engage with customers. 

This post explores seven essential trends to keep your eCommerce strategy fresh and competitive. 

But first, let’s quickly look at how and why it’s essential to evaluate trends and goals to ensure they align best with your brand's identity, target market, and operational capabilities before jumping into upgrades.

Strategic and Business Considerations

Before investing in any new marketing strategy, technology, or trend, ask yourself these pivotal questions:

  • Who consistently buys from us, and why do they return?
  • Are we aiming to expand into new markets, and if so, which ones?
  • What gaps exist in our current customer journey? 
  • How effective is our data collection, and are we gaining insightful customer and lead information?
  • How do these trends or technologies integrate into our customer conversion process?
  • Do these trends or technologies align with our company’s vision and long-term goals?

Additionally, it is vital that you have a good understanding of your business goals and any barriers you have before integrating any new tactic or technology. To ensure this, you must have a robust data collection and analysis system collecting deep customer insights. You also need to consider investing in advanced AI capabilities or improved data handling, customer interaction, and overall service delivery. 

Now, let’s get to the nitty gritty: Seven eCommerce trends worth investing in this year. 

7 eCommerce Trends to Implement This Year 

eCommerce is constantly evolving with new technologies, reshaping not only how customers interact online but also determining which products they buy. Let’s look at the most important trends to consider integrating into your eCommerce business, including: 

1. Blockchain for Enhanced Supply Chain Transparency

Blockchain technology has adapted beyond its original financial applications to revolutionize a few industries and functions, including supply chain management. 

This technology enables online retailers to provide a decentralized ledger that records every transaction along the supply chain in a verifiable and permanent way. How? Blockchain enables every transaction or movement of goods to be recorded and timestamped and ensures this information is accessible to all parties involved. 

And the benefits? Blockchain technology allows businesses to prove their products' origins, whether they are claiming sustainability practices or the authenticity of luxury items. This goes a long way into building trust with consumers who are increasingly concerned about the ethicality and genuineness of products.

Many big retailers, like Walmart and Carrefour, have already implemented this technology to manage their food supply chains. Blockchain enables them to track produce from farm to store shelves, ensuring food safety and a quick response to any contamination issues. 

Alibaba, on the other hand, utilizes blockchain to enhance the transparency of its cross-border supply chains to push consumer trust. Their customers can access the blockchain records to verify that the goods they receive are genuine and have passed through all the necessary quality checks. 

But you don’t have to make huge financial investments to get the advantages of blockchain technology. For Shopify store owners, you can start more simply with apps like Verisart.

2. Gamified Loyalty Programs

Another hot eCommerce trend worth examining is gamified loyalty programs. Although not new, these programs are becoming increasingly popular amongst shoppers. And there is a lot of logic behind why! 

logic behind gamified loyalty programs

[Source: Antavo]

Gamified loyalty programs integrate game mechanics into traditional loyalty systems to make customer engagement more fun and interactive. They can take the form of point scoring or achievement badges, competitions, or a combination thereof. Starbucks Reward is an excellent example of a brand using a hybrid of gamified loyalty programs. 

gamified loyalty program example

[Source: Stamp Me]

Gamified loyalty programs capitalize on the human desire for competition and achievement to drive customer engagement and loyalty. By rewarding customers in a way that feels more like play than a transaction, you can better connect with potential customers and shoppers, encourage more frequent interactions, and improve long-term retention. 

The possibilities are endless, but here are some examples of the most popular gamified systems: 

  • Spin-to-win/scratch-to-win
  • Challenges and missions 
  • Leaderboards
  • Levels and progression
  • Points system 
  • Feedback and rewards
  • Spending-based tiers
  • Multiple milestones

Gamification doesn’t have to be a slog. It can be as easy as adding an app like Smile.io on your online store.

3. Augmented Reality for Enhanced Shopping Experiences

AR may not be new, but its accessibility is! 

In previous years, only mega brands like IKEA, or social platforms like Snapchat, were able to capitalize on it, but now AR is accessible to all Shopify stores with tools like Shopify AR

For eCommerce, this means the ability to transform product displays into interactive experiences that engage customers more deeply than traditional static images. AR technology also enables you to upgrade your content marketing and live shopping strategies with gamification.  

Ultimately, AR can dramatically improve the conversion rate, especially for higher-end items that customers are typically hesitant to buy online, or in cases where a shopper is buying from your store for the first time. And it’s now accessible to everyone — with many apps adding AR tech to existing 3D modeling (another growing eCommerce trend) capabilities.  

Here are just some of the Shopify apps that include eCommerce AR functionality: 

4. Sustainable Practices in eCommerce

The next eCommerce trend worth looking at is sustainability. More mainstream than ever, many customers are demanding brands be more environmentally responsible. This means implementing strategies that minimize environmental impact through eco-friendly products, reduced packaging waste, and sustainable business operations.

Sustainability influences every aspect of eCommerce operations, from sourcing materials and manufacturing products to packaging and shipping, and, in some cases, streamlining costs.

However, by embracing sustainability, you will be doing more than meeting consumer expectations. You will also position your store as a market leader in terms of ethical practices, which boosts loyalty while also attracting new customers. Outdoor apparel brand Patagonia is all too familiar with this — their whole brand is built around sustainable apparel practices.

Here are just some of the ways you can implement more sustainability practices for your store: 

  • Investing in carbon-offset programs
  • Reducing packaging 
  • Implementing reusable or recycled packaging 
  • Localizing warehousing 
  • Choosing sustainable suppliers and materials 
  • Offering a product take-back or recycling program

5. Personalized Subscription Services

A newer eCommerce trend worth looking into is personalized subscriptions. Unlike traditional, one-size-fits-all subscriptions, these are tailored to individual customer preferences, including specific product types, delivery frequencies, and customized packaging options.

This means giving customers exactly what they want, when they want it, instead of forcing them to fit into specific packages — enhancing customer satisfaction in a big way. It also helps diminish the need for repeated manual orders as well as increasing customer loyalty and retention. 

Offering personalized subscriptions can transform product marketing and sales for eCommerce businesses. It allows for regular and predictable revenue streams while also gathering continuous data on customer preferences that can be used to further refine product offerings and marketing strategies. This is something that brands like Stitch Fix have been doing for some time.

Personalized subsription examples stitch fix

[Source: Stitch Fix]

If you’re looking for a quick way to cash in on this eCommerce trend, several Shopify apps offer some level of personalization. Let’s look at three: 

  1. Recharge Subscriptions. Offers robust customization options that can create personalized experiences through conditional logic and customer responses, but generally focuses on adjusting frequencies, quantities, and product mixes rather than fully unique individual setups.
  2. Bold Subscriptions. Provides tools for build-a-box subscriptions and tailored recommendations, which can approach 1:1 personalization by allowing customers to choose their preferred products within a subscription. However, the personalization level is more about selection than individualized dynamic adjustments.
  3. PayWhirl Subscription Payments. Allows customers significant control over their subscription details, which can include choosing products and managing delivery schedules, but its personalization is more about giving options than dynamically creating unique subscriber experiences.

6. AI-Driven Visual Search

AI-driven visual search technology allows your shoppers to upload images to your store to instantly find similar or complementary products. Powered by AI, it analyzes the uploaded photographs and generates search results based on visual elements rather than text queries.

The biggest benefit of implementing this technology is that it simplifies the shopping process for mobile customers on the go and is more intuitive and engaging than traditional search. This means better product discoverability and shopper engagement, driving a user-friendly path from visual interest to purchase to reduce search time. 

A great example of an eCommerce store leveraging AI-driven visual search technology is Wayfair. This giant online home goods and furniture market has integrated visual search into its mobile app to enhance the shopping experience. It enables their customers to take photos of furniture or home decor they encounter anywhere — in a magazine, at a friend’s house, or in a store — and then upload the image through Wayfair’s app.


Other large retailers like Zara and Kohl's have also integrated visual search recently, but now thanks to AI advancements, even smaller brands can easily implement visual search onto their stores. 

7. Multi-Parameter Dynamic Product Sorting 

Last, but not least, let’s talk about product sorting. Over the last few years, brands have been using dynamic product sorting, which uses machine learning algorithms to automatically rearrange products on eCommerce sites based on a variety of user-specific signals such as past behavior, search preferences, and likely purchase intent.

But in 2024, product personalization is no longer enough. Instead, you need a multi-parameter, advanced merchandising approach that factors in personalized preferences with essential marketing and retail business goals. 

By dynamically sorting products based on real-time inventory metrics, marketing KPIs, and customer interests, you not only boost online sales but drive long-term profitability as well. 

Online retailer Summum has had huge success with this. After changing to a multi-parameter strategy, they improved their conversion rates by 19% in just five weeks. 

And how did they do it? With Kimonix! 

You can find out more here

Wrap Up 

There you have it: Seven eCommerce trends you can implement this year — if you have the right technology. But before you adopt these trends, you need to ensure they align with your brand's values, your market’s expectations, and your customers' desires. 

Have eCommerce marketing and merchandising questions? Reach out to us here!

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