Mobile Sales Dominate eCommerce
Mobile commerce saw a significant rise during the quarantine period in the UK, growing by 57%, meaning it accounted for 63% of total eCommerce orders in the UK during Q2 of 2020.
This news has come from Salesforce’s Q2 Shopping Index, an extensive report which surveyed 1 billion consumers across the globe.
According to the research, desktop orders also grew but at a slower rate of 43%. They accounted for 32% of online UK orders during Q2, with Tablets making up the remaining 5%. Social traffic played a role in the Mobile Commerce growth as it was responsible for 13% of mobile-based sales. All of this has resulted in Digital traffic growing 36% overall during Q2, which is just the latest statistic showing the increased and sustained demand for online shopping brought on by the global pandemic.
The study also backed up the idea that the sudden uptick in eCommerce would continue after stores have re-opened, with Salesforce stating that “the growth we observed at the end of April continued for the entire quarter” (up to June 30th).
The idea of ‘intentional shopping’ was identified as a key trend by Salesforce, as they explained how digital shoppers during Q2 had a much higher conversion rate than would be expected during typical periods of increased digital traffic, such as the holiday sales. In fact, shopping cart completion rates were up 35% globally from the same period in 2019. Salesforce identified health and beauty shoppers as the most ‘motivated’ group, as their checkout rate was up 58% from Q2 2019.
Curbside Pickup Soars In Popularity
It’s a delivery method that was used by only a handful of brands in 2019, but now Curbside Pickup has become a popular and cost-effective way for apparel retailers to get orders into customer’s hands during Covid-19.
The practice is described by Entrepreneur Europe as “a sort of drive-thru for businesses that don’t typically do that”. It is in many ways a variation on the Buy Online, Pay In-Store method, where instead of picking up the item, customers drive to a location and store employees bring it to their car. With the health risks now associated with entering brick and mortar stores, Curbside Pickup has acted as an ideal solution for eCommerce customers who want to save money on postage, but also want to avoid shopping in-store. Now a recent study has found that from the digital commerce 360 ‘Top 1000’ retailers, 34.1% were offering the service in June 2020, up from the 1.6% that offered it as recently January 2020.
Retail chains, many of whom made most of their sales in brick and mortar stores prior to the pandemic, leaned heavily into this delivery method. Of the top 1000 apparel retail chains, 50% were offering it in June 2020, a huge increase from the less than 5% of chains offering it in January.
In the US, Party City is one chain that made a big push towards Curbside Pickup. Despite many expecting party goods to be the last thing people would look to buy during a pandemic, the company saw demand for balloons and decorations skyrocket. The chain ended up investing in a way to automate the curbside pickup system, as it became increasingly popular. The company is now working with tech-firm Bringg, to improve the efficiency of their pickup system, and keep up with the “thousands and thousands” of orders they are receiving through the service. According to Forbes, “If Party City can get curbside and same-day delivery right, it could be a game-changer for the chain.”
Instagram Debut Redesigned Shop
After announcements earlier in the year, Instagram has finally launched it’s redesigned ‘Instagram Shop’, the latest move the social media company has made towards joining the rapidly growing eCommerce market.
The new feature can be found in the ‘Explore’ section of the app and is powered by Facebook Pay, which will deal with purchase and donations within the United States.
The shop will feature curated collections from the people running the Instagram shop account, as well as items from a number of brands and creators. Instagram has already had eCommerce features, including the ability to checkout from certain accounts in-app, but this new Instagram Shop aims to increase the amount of browsing and brand discovery happening on the app. This is achieved by personalizing the shop to the individual user, in a similar way to how Instagram chooses which photos a user will see in their discover tab.
In terms of Facebook Pay, the system was created last year with the purpose of allowing secure transactions across the suite of Social Media companies owned by Facebook. Currently, it will be available to U.S users when they go to make in-app purchases through Instagram or donate to their favourite retailers to support them during the coronavirus pandemic. A selling fee is added onto the price, which creates a new stream of revenue for Facebook that may prove to be lucrative as online retail continues to soar.
Image Credit: Instagram
Meanwhile, Google has announced the introduction of Shoploop, a shopping platform based around videos that explain new products to consumers in under 90 seconds. Founder Lax Poojary has expressed that the concept for the site came from seeing how shoppers use a combination of social media and eCommerce platforms to research potential purchases. Shoploop wants to incorporate the reviews and demos of YouTube onto an actual shoppable platform. The team behind it has said they will begin with beauty products like makeup and skincare while allowing creators to work out their own brand deals for any products that they use. Shoploop as a product will not be monetized.