e-commerce trends 2018

E-Commerce Trends 2018: Five Retail Trends That Can Help Boost Your Jewelry Sales

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Jewelers, how are you keeping up with the rapid, mind-boggling evolution of the global e-commerce?

The e-commerce industry is expected to increase to $4.5 trillion in 2021 from $2.3 trillion in 2017. This means the competition is continuously heating up and has even more intensified as the industry becomes a magnet for big brands and new entrants. This rapid growth was also seen as the driver of left and right innovations that seem to shape online shopping and challenge traditional business models.

These innovations stemmed from the unmissable fact that shoppers’ way of consuming information, buying behavior, and preferences has also faced a seismic shift.  If you’re not on top of these things, how do you intend to win the war against your competition? We believe that to keep pace with the shoppers’ buying behavior, you must work to achieve the nirvana of shopper mind-reading. And it begins by knowing the trends.

Join us as we unpack five of the hottest e-commerce trends that your jewelry business should target this 2018.

READ MORE: Where to Sell Jewelry Online: 5 Online Marketplaces for All Types of Jewelry

Five Hottest E-Commerce Trends that Should Boost Your Jewelry Sales this 2018

1. An exploding desire for social media video content 

A sparkling diamond ring captured using the GemLightbox, jewelry by Jewellery by Design

The rising popularity of video content is no longer a secret. Experts predict that by 2019, 85% of search traffic data in the U.S. alone will be driven by video content. This prediction poses a new challenge to marketers as more powerful figures – like how 53% of people are clamoring for more video content from marketers – demand for their attention to focus on this trend. Not only that, 51.9% of marketing professionals have attested that video content records the best ROI.

Take a look at the sample Instagram video above, which shows why video content is king. It captures people’s attention immediately. In a highly-visual, digital world, you have only seven seconds or less to capture the attention of your target shoppers. Hence, if you want to send a message across, you have to make sure that your content can lock your shoppers’ attention; otherwise, they’ll keep on scrolling up and down as if you never appeared on their screen.

Further, videos can also evoke emotions, which can lead to higher engagement. A study shows that embedding a video on your website or social media pages to showcase your products can make people 10x more likely to engage with it by liking, sharing, or commenting. So next time you’re on Instagram, try uploading a video or ads and see how your followers will engage with it. It has been said that while photos drive more likes, video content drives more comments than photos. It doesn’t have to be lengthy. If you can communicate your intention in 30 seconds, you may go ahead and do so. But always create videos that will make them watch and linger.

2. Better product imagery

Jewelry e-commerce trends 2018
Source: Blue Nile

It’s time to up your product photography game because when it comes to digital shopping, seeing is believing. Whether you’re an online jeweler or an omnichannel jewelry retailer, you know that the lack of touch and feel in digital shopping can hurt your business.  Better photography practices and innovations are crucial for the visual presentation of your products because shoppers rely on product images before making a purchase decision or contacting your or your concierge if you have any. It can also minimize the rate of product returns.

You can respond to this trend in so many different ways. For instance, adding a 360-degree image of your jewelry can show the full features of your product to your shoppers. It provides them with a more immersive and interactive shopping experience – one that simulates the kind of experience they get when shopping in brick and mortar stores. Blue Nile, as shown above, exemplifies this trend by incorporating a 360-degree view of their diamonds. If you’re a shopper, you just click the arrow to rotate the diamond until you’re satisfied.

READ MORE: A Beginner’s Guide: How to Take 360 Jewelry Product Images for Your Website

3. The power of user-generated content 

Jewelry e-commerce trends 2018
Source: James Avery Artisan Jewelry

User-generated content is crucial now more than ever, especially with Mark Zuckerberg’s recent announcement that Facebook would change its News Feed by showing more posts from the user’s friends and families while lessening public content from brands and media.

User-generated content is considered to be more powerful than other campaigns because it can build brand trust by putting out and spreading your name and product in front of a network of potential customers like the user’s families, friends, common friends, friends of friends, and more. With today’s increasing reliance on peer opinion and friends and family recommendations, having access to this network makes user-generated content a modern-day word of mouth oozing with brand-building potential. User-generated content is said to improve the jewelry conversion rate by 2.4x. 

User-Generated content comes in many forms. It can be photos of your products uploaded by your customer, a review, a video, or a simple comment mentioning your brand. James Avery Artisan Jewelry, as pictured above, is a perfect example of a jewelry brand that exemplifies this trend.  The brand encourages customers to submit their James Avery jewelry photo by featuring it on their website.

READ MORE: Five Compelling Jewelry Photography Tips for Social Media

4. Treading the cryptocurrency path

Jewelry e-commerce trends 2018
Source: REEDS Jewelers

With online marketplaces like Etsy and Shopify supporting Bitcoin, cryptocurrency is shaping not only the online payment systems but also the e-commerce industry as a whole while carefully treading the path of blockchain technology.

Cryptocurrency is a type of encrypted code that can be transferred digitally using different devices like smartphones. Many believed that cryptocurrency transactions will provide shoppers with fast and secure payment and shopping experience because it doesn’t require repetitive authentication. This ease of transaction makes cryptocurrency appealing to some e-commerce store owners. This, together with the increasing adoption of it, has led Technavio – a technology research company – to report that cryptocurrency will drive the e-commerce industry until 2020.

As shown in the image above, REEDS Jewelers – a U.S jewelry retail company established in 1946 – is one of the jewelry brands that accept bitcoin payments.

5. The influence of personalization

Jewelry e-commerce trends 2018
Source: Brilliant Earth

The magic of personalization in retail is inarguable. It’s not a new trend but it shows no signs of fading out in the noise of rapid technological advancement. With personalization, you can practice your skill in mind-reading by adding more accuracy to it through the use of data. Those data will tell you what your shoppers want and need. By analyzing and understanding this information, you’ll be able to provide your shoppers with a more personalized shopping experience instead of a one-size-fits-all, non-converting solution.

There are several ways to design a personalized service. For instance, offering product variations or accepting custom orders. Another way is to transfer control to your customers when it comes to designing their jewelry. Brilliant Earth (see image above) is an embodiment of personalization. Jewelry shoppers can go to their website and create their own engagement ring – rings that shoppers will be proud to wear not only because they designed it but more so because of the social responsibility associated with every purchase. Brilliant Earth is an advocate of ethically-sourced diamonds. They also donate 5% of their profits to different initiatives that transform lives and support those ‘who have been harmed by the diamond industry.’

Experiment, experiment, experiment!

Whichever way you choose to strategize this year, always remember to experiment with different approaches to improve the shopping experience. You can get an independent person to evaluate your website performance or have them shopped on-site so that they can give you insights to better your strategy. Regardless of how you want to approach it, there will always be room for improvement. The true, constant strategy here is to capitalize on those opportunities to make your shoppers happy.

So, are you ready to ride the tide of growing e-commerce sales?

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