E-commerce will continue to evolve.
Despite being relatively young, the e-commerce industry is fast-changing and evolving. Born out of the internet boom in the 90s, in the three decades since its inception, e-commerce has undergone many changes and pivots. Some of the major changes include
The rise of mobile shopping: In the early days of e-commerce, most people shopped online using desktop computers or laptops. However, the proliferation of smartphones has led to a surge in mobile shopping, with many consumers now using their phones to shop online.
The growth of social media for e-commerce: In the early days of e-commerce, businesses primarily used their websites and email newsletters to promote their products and engage with customers. However, the rise of social media has made it easier for businesses to connect with their customers and promote their products on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
The rise of the gig economy: In the early days of e-commerce, most businesses were large, established companies. However, the growth of the gig economy has allowed more people to sell their products and services online, leading to a rise in the number of small businesses and independent sellers on e-commerce platforms.
The rise of digital payment methods and smart contracts: Digital disruptors like cryptocurrency have changed traditional approaches of making payments and trustless interactions, allowing for peer-to-peer commerce that bypasses intermediaries.
The increased use of artificial intelligence and machine learning: In the early days of e-commerce, most interactions between businesses and customers were simple and transactional. However, the development of AI and machine learning has made it possible for businesses to personalize the customer experience and offer more tailored recommendations.
Despite the massive reach, many companies globally still do not provide e-commerce solutions to their customers. This can be the result of uncertainty, or lack of technical infrastructure, but it represents a massive opportunity for growth.