Global Commerce Trends for 2018

With increasing access to the Internet, commerce or rather e-commerce is changing shape to meet the demands of this interconnected world. Consumers are getting connected globally and are thus becoming more aware and have a greater number of choices. Over 50% of the consumers turn to the Internet either for making purchases or for product-related information. Mentioned below are 5 modern technological trends that will majorly influence commerce in the years to come.

1) Dawn of super apps

These apps combine every facet of the consumer-world into one platform.
Most super apps have 4 significant functions- finance, retail, lifestyle,
and communication. These super apps have been a huge hit among consumers,
especially in Asia. WeChat in China, with about 1 billion users, has
brought in a commercial revolution in the country. Western developers like
Google, Amazon, and Apple are following suit and are constantly adding more
and more features to their platform which will one day lead to super apps.

2) Data – Currency of the new age

Data has become one of the most valuable commodities in the recent times.
The biggest companies in the world are software companies which deal in
data. The ability to utilize metadata concerning consumer behavior and
purchase patterns has started to play a major role in the world of
commerce. This new age of data has allowed companies to connect more
intimately with their customers by offering customized ads and experience.
Consumers are always looking to be treated differently and this has been
made possible in the recent times with data analysis.

3) Tabs and subscription models

Subscription models have been a staple of the business world. This model of
business has seen serious developments with the integration of software and
economy of the Internet. Subscriptions are more easily accessible than ever
before, thanks to the Internet. With the rise in AI technologies, companies
are now finding it easier to analyze large heaps of data, identify patterns
and send out packaged deals to customers. The Internet of Things (IoT)
will, in future, take away the aspect of human intervention from the
consumers’ perspective. Purchases will be automatically added to open tabs
as detected by the various household devices of the consumer. This will
play a major role in frequently-purchased items such as groceries and
utilities.

4) Online and mobile wallets

Mobile wallets have started to expand their operations following the
patterns of the consumers. The main development was allowing customers to
use their mobile wallets internationally. The seamless transactions that
take place on such wallets greatly improve the customer experience. It also
equips them with greater purchasing power by expanding their card network.
WeChat Pay, Apple Pay, Google wallets are now in a race to expand their
network and rope in more and more consumers. WeChat, in particular, is
expanding their network to the west. With an increase in inter-government
cooperation, more and more consumers are traveling and spending
internationally. Be it purchasing items from a different country or
tourism-related expenses, paying for such services using an international
digital wallet will become a major trend in the times to come.

5) Outlets becoming more tech-savvy

Global commerce is going through a major overhaul. The ever-changing
expectations of consumers and the dynamic nature of the market are
affecting how consumers view and buy products. Even though online retailers
are on the rise, physical outlets play a critical role in the market.
Physical outlets propagate the name of the brand and form relationships
with consumers by providing them a delightful customer experience. VR and
augmented reality-technologies will play a critical role in shaping the
shop-experience in the near future.