Trends in e-commerce: staying ahead of the curve to grow your brand

In the ever-evolving landscape of e-commerce, staying ahead of trends is paramount for brands aiming to thrive in the digital marketplace. With technology continually advancing and consumer behavior shifting rapidly, adapting and innovating are key to sustaining growth and relevance. 

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into some of the most significant trends shaping the e-commerce industry and explore strategies for brands to leverage these trends to their advantage.

The evolution of e-commerce: a brief overview

The concept of buying and selling goods and services online has come a long way since its inception. From the early days of basic online storefronts to the sophisticated, AI-driven platforms of today, e-commerce has transformed how businesses operate and how consumers shop. As technology continues to advance, new trends emerge, reshaping the e-commerce landscape and presenting both challenges and opportunities for brands.

Trend 1: multichannel expansion

One of the most significant trends in e-commerce is the shift towards multichannel selling. Traditionally, brands operated within the confines of their own e-commerce website. However, with the proliferation of online marketplaces and social media platforms, consumers now have multiple touchpoints where they can discover and purchase products.  In fact, the multichannel market is expected to reach over $800 billion by the end of 2025, as can be seen in the graph below.

Multichannel expansion involves diversifying your sales channels to reach customers wherever they are online. This can include selling on third-party marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, and Etsy, as well as leveraging social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest for commerce.

The benefits of multichannel selling are immense. By expanding beyond your own website, you can tap into new audiences, increase brand visibility, and drive sales through additional channels. As a matter of fact, businesses with a multichannel strategy see, on average, a 91% higher customer retention rate, indicating that implementing such a strategy not only attracts new customers but also retains existing ones.  Moreover, spreading your risk across multiple platforms can help mitigate the impact of any changes or disruptions that may occur in the e-commerce ecosystem.

Trend 2: the rise of TikTok Shops

In recent years, TikTok has emerged as one of the fastest-growing social media platforms, captivating audiences with its short-form video content. With over a billion active users worldwide, TikTok presents a massive opportunity for brands to connect with consumers in a highly engaging and authentic way.

TikTok Shops, introduced in 2021, represent the platform’s foray into e-commerce, allowing brands to showcase and sell products directly within the app. At its core, TikTok Shop harnesses the platform’s extensive user community and captivating content to drive interaction and sales conversions. In fact, projections suggest that 33.3% of TikTok’s user base will make purchases through TikTok Shop this year alone. This presents an exceptional opportunity for brands seeking to broaden their reach, given that 39% of American adults and a striking 68% of Gen Z adults express a willingness to make direct purchases through TikTok, as illustrated in the graph to the right.  Leveraging features such as shoppable links and in-video shopping, TikTok Shops enable seamless commerce experiences that align with the platform’s user-centric ethos.

The benefits of TikTok Shop are seemingly endless, including access to their audience of over 1.7 billion monthly active users.  Additionally, TikTok has amazing engagement rates, and is known for its trend awareness and opportunity for virality.  Many businesses are able to reach their target audiences on the platform, and 78% of small business brands on the platform have seen a positive return on investment (ROI) after using the platform.  Expanding onto TikTok Shop can be difficult, and it is important to have an experienced partner to guide you toward success on the marketplace.  Brands that embrace creativity, authenticity, and cultural relevance stand to thrive on TikTok, driving brand awareness, engagement, and ultimately, sales.

Trend 3: personalization and customer experience

Personalization has become a cornerstone of successful e-commerce strategies, as consumers increasingly expect tailored shopping experiences that cater to their individual needs and preferences. Brands that leverage data analytics, AI, and machine learning algorithms to deliver personalized product recommendations, targeted marketing campaigns, and customized shopping experiences stand to win customer loyalty and drive higher conversion rates.

To capitalize on the trend of personalization, brands should focus on collecting and analyzing customer data across all touchpoints, from website interactions to social media engagement to purchase history. Personalization can result in increased sales for brands.  In fact, 44% of customers who have shopping experiences that are personalized will become repeat purchasers from a brand.  By understanding each customer’s unique preferences and behavior, brands can deliver relevant and timely messaging, anticipate their needs, and provide seamless, personalized experiences that foster long-term relationships.

In essence, personalization represents a paradigm shift in e-commerce, empowering brands to transcend traditional marketing strategies and forge meaningful connections with consumers on a deeply personal level. By prioritizing the collection and analysis of customer data, and leveraging advanced technologies to deliver tailored experiences at scale, brands can position themselves at the forefront of the personalization revolution, driving sustained growth and differentiation in an increasingly competitive marketplace.

Trend 4: mobile commerce (M-commerce)

With the proliferation of smartphones and the increasing prevalence of mobile internet usage, M-commerce has become a dominant force in the e-commerce landscape. As can be seen in the graph to the left, M-commerce sales are expected to reach $604.5 billion this year.  There’s never been a better time to ensure your website is optimized for mobile traffic. 

Brands that prioritize mobile optimization, responsive design, and mobile-friendly checkout experiences are well-positioned to capitalize on the growing trend of M-commerce. As a matter of fact, smartphones account for over 45% of all web traffic, and 76% of US adults have made a purchase using their smartphone.  Additionally, integrating mobile payment options such as digital wallets and one-click checkout can streamline the purchasing process and reduce friction for mobile shoppers.

To succeed in the mobile-first world of e-commerce, brands should prioritize speed, simplicity, and convenience in their mobile shopping experiences, ensuring that customers can easily browse, discover, and purchase products on any device, anywhere, and anytime.

Trend 5: sustainability and ethical shopping

As environmental concerns and social responsibility become increasingly prominent in consumer consciousness, there’s a growing demand for sustainable and ethically sourced products. Developing a more sustainable and eco-friendly brand could be the key to long-term e-commerce success.  Brands that prioritize sustainability, transparency, and ethical practices in their supply chains and business operations can differentiate themselves in the market and appeal to environmentally conscious consumers.

To capitalize on the trend of sustainability and ethical shopping, brands should communicate their commitment to responsible practices through storytelling, transparent labeling, and eco-friendly packaging. 83% of consumers will choose a more expensive brand if they have a better record of sustainability.  Additionally, partnering with sustainability-focused organizations, supporting social causes, and implementing environmentally friendly initiatives can further enhance brand reputation and attract socially conscious consumers.

By aligning with consumer values and demonstrating a genuine commitment to sustainability and ethical practices, brands can not only drive sales but also foster loyalty and goodwill among customers who prioritize ethical considerations in their purchasing decisions.


In conclusion, staying ahead of the curve in e-commerce requires brands to embrace innovation, adapt to changing consumer behavior, and leverage emerging trends to their advantage. Multichannel expansion offers brands the opportunity to reach customers wherever they are online, while TikTok Shops represent a new frontier for commerce, blending entertainment with shopping in a seamless experience.

By understanding the significance of these trends and implementing strategies to capitalize on them effectively, brands can position themselves for sustained growth and success in the dynamic world of e-commerce. If needed, you can seek out help to grow your brand profitably across channels.  Whether it’s expanding onto new platforms, experimenting with creative content, or forging partnerships with influencers, the key is to remain agile, customer-centric, and always striving to stay one step ahead of the competition.

Learn more: Optimize your product listings by testing design concepts, photos, and descriptions with a target audience of likely buyers.

Krista Becker

Krista Becker is a digital marketing connoisseur, with years of experience across e-commerce, healthcare & transportation. Educated in marketing and business administration and equipped with several digital marketing certifications, she is an expert at crafting meaningful content with a focus on demand generation.