Danny Denhard shares his top 5 ecommerce predictions, highlighting what will change in social media...
Prediction 1: the rise of personal social
More personal sharing will take place away from newsfeeds and through direct messages and messengers.
Social media landscape will become more personal, this happens historically and will continue to reduce down from one to many, to one to a few, to one to one. You could argue Facebook predicted this with their many purchases, most importantly WhatsApp. I see Facebook happily increasing the number of businesses directly integrating into the messenger platform and monetising this as a separate service.
Whatsapp will continue to be ads free but more social sharing will take place and it’s a service which brands will have to take seriously.
Prediction 2: the continued growth of video
Video and native video will ramp up, Facebook and Snapchat numbers are impressive and will continue to skyrocket, Facebook’s power within video is downplayed and will seriously challenge YouTube. Creators will not all jump ship as they may struggle to port their subscribers however with viewing numbers being important, many will ride the Facebook video wave.
Keep an eye out for 360 videos, Facebook have heavily invested in this space (YouTube announced they are following suit) and will be a real game changer for forward thinking brands and broadcasters. Facebook’s step into virtual reality with Oculus will also be awesome to watch and experience. VR will kick off in gaming and then go mainstream especially with Samsung offering VR devices from US$99.
Prediction 3: Twitter’s decline
I fear for Twitter in 2016, their product is confused and we are seeing a large number of tests being unsuccessful especially the amount of sharing taking place. Twitter will push into more rich media but I can see many users using the platform less. Twitter is popular and will continue to be, but with it not having the mass appeal it once did, they will struggle to keep users and make non users visit the site. It's hard to see what they can do to make Twitter something exciting again. The Jack Dorsey AMA on Product Hunt is an interesting read.
Prediction 4: Discovery
Discovery engines such as Instagram will continue to get a lot of attention, especially from PR leveraging influencers. We will see a real increase in the quality of ads, which will mean that people will start making purchases and not just liking or commenting. Pinterest in the US will continue to really influence behaviours and large companies will be able to leverage promoted pins to really push social commerce and influence purchases of specific lines. Pinterest will have to make a huge leap in 2016 and e-commerce is definitely the space they naturally fall into.
Prediction 5: Snapchat influencing brands
Channels such as Snapchat will continue to get a lot of attention, driving a lot of downloads and views. Snapchat has a real buzz about it but it's very expensive to run a campaign; I can see large UK and European brands really testing the platform and driving deeper links into their sites to try and convert views into reads or downloads. With the demographics it currently has, 2016 might be the year it's tested out and flirted with by brands and slightly older demographics.
Social commerce relies on personal relationships to make purchases and this won’t stop... Some great thoughts on the future of social there from the one and only Danny Denhard!
Loved these ecommerce predictions? Take a look at Danny's post on dark social...
About Danny Denhard
Danny Denhard is a consultant, trainer and advisor from his consultancy Denhard Media. He has worked in online marketing for 13 years, working agency side, in-house and as a consultant. Danny helps brands across multiple verticals develop their strategy and online brand to increase their visibility across SEO, social media and content marketing. Over the past year he has worked with a number of successful start ups and challenger brands.