The top 9 ecommerce trends for 2021 we’re keeping our eye on!

Dec 1, 2020 2:44:07 PM

It’s no surprise that the rise of ecommerce has been rapid recently, especially given the current economic circumstances. But, one thing is for certain; the future of ecommerce is already here and it’s still changing. 


We at cranberry panda want to help you prepare your ecommerce teams for the next chapter in the ecommerce story, so here are nine trends that we think should be should be watched out for in 2021. 


Premium private label brands 


Over the past few years, we have seen a surge in direct to customer (D2C) commerce, which allows brands to directly access customers and profits, giving customers direct access to brands and lower prices. Over the past few years, however, we have witnessed a shift in this trend. 


By creating a new vertical in the D2C sector, premium private label brands have managed to secure a steady increase. Consumers are turning to private label brands for better shopping experiences and superior products. 


Offline ecommerce 


This may come as a surprise for some, especially given the recent boom in online retailing, but there is definitely room to grow regarding taking ecommerce stores offline. There are increasing opportunities to bring online retailers onto the high street, whether they are in the form of pop-up shops, bricks and mortar stores or interactive ecommerce kiosks. 


We have even seen major brands like Amazon getting in on the action, with the emergence of its physical convenience stores. It’s no doubt that 2021 will be the year to see a rise in ecommerce brands on the high street, connecting the internet to real life. 


Shoppable TV 


We’ve all been there...watching the latest Netflix series and thinking “damn, that’s a nice shirt.” Well, thanks to the potential of shoppable TV, you’ll soon be able to click, find and purchase that damn good shirt! 


This technology, which would connect programs to websites and/or apps, would enable viewers to purchase what’s on-screen, connecting viewing and shopping into a seamless experience that benefits both shoppers and retailers. 


AI customer sourcing 


You may have been browsing on your favourite online retail website and seen a recommendation for your dream shoes and thought “how does it know to show me these?” Well, it’s all thanks to artificial intelligence (AI). AI is used in ecommerce to make intelligent product recommendations, visualise products better and assist with customer queries. We believe that in 2021, AI is going to help find your customer for you too. 


Current trends, products, sales channels, customers and buyer behaviour will all be analysed using intelligent algorithms, to identify the best channels, time and price to list your products. 




Next year we are bound to see a revival of second-hand commerce, better known as ReCommerce. You may be thinking “well this has already been successfully explored with eBay and Gumtree”, well think again! 


We have discovered, through recent research, that the second-hand market is predicted to double within the next five years. Sustainability, rather than price, remains to be a significant motivator when it comes to consumer decisions, and this has allowed the second-hand sales of luxury items to shake up the ReCommerce industry. 


This opens up so many windows of opportunity for brands to try their hand at turning second-hand shopping into an exciting shopping experience. 


P2P and rentals 


It’s no secret that there is a significant returns problem within the ecommerce industry. Dishonest customers are taking advantage of returns windows to dress up for their latest Instagram story, while honest customers are returning out of conscious consumerism. Could rentals be the solution? 


We have seen that many retailers looking to expand into rental ecommerce next year, following the significant growth in peer-to-peer (P2P) platforms. Offering consumers this chance to rent clothing, furniture or electronics will give you as a business the opportunity to increase your audience reach while reducing returns. 


Advanced customisation 


Product customisation isn’t new. Have you been on the Nike website recently? You can now customise every aspect of your Nike Airs, even the wording on the back.


Even though this avenue as already been explored, your ability to provide last-minute personalisation at an affordable cost is one that is being increasingly looked into. The innovation of 3D printing is changing manufacturing processes to enable quick customisations towards the end of the product journey. 


Plus, with this technology becoming more of a household item thanks to its affordability and availability, it’s only a matter of time before customisation becomes the norm. 


Fulfilment and emerging technology 


There is no doubt that 2021 will see an increase in the use of autonomous deliveries, smart sensors, blockchain tracking, and digital twinning to increase delivery speeds, efficiencies and cost savings.


Smart home assistants 


It has been clear to see the benefits of Alexa and Google home when it comes to turning off the lights or playing your favourite dinner party playlist, but they have also been quietly taking over the ecommerce industry. 


Of all the smart speaker owners, around 20% use them for shopping related activities - whether that’s ordering products, creating reminders or tracking deliveries. Within the next four years, this figure is expected to jump to 52%. 


If you have a smart assistant and you’re not currently taking advantage of the ecommerce opportunities, get moving or get let behind! 


Do these trends tie into your ecommerce recruitment plans?

It may be obvious, but if this year has taught us anything, it’s to always prepare for the unexpected. Whether you agree to the potential these trends hold for 2021, or you think there’s still a few more years to go, one thing is certain, marketing and sales strategies for tomorrow’s world of ecommerce will ensure your business isn’t left behind! 


I'd love to hear your plans for 2021. Get in touch if you would like to discuss the best structure to take your team forward and opportunities to seize based on market conditions. Click below to fill out an enquiry or you can send me an email: 

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