6 eCommerce Trends to Follow in 2021

John Davier
John Davier

Last updated on

March 13, 2024

2021 has been great in terms of eCommerce growth, even despite COVID-19, the year still offers opportunities for your brand to grow and prosper. That’s why it’s essential to follow the growing eCommerce trends that influence this year’s marketing success, as following the upcoming trends can help you to attract and connect with your customers better.

Each year it’s getting more difficult to predict what marketing trends will help you to reach your audience, as new strategies and techniques appear on a yearly and sometimes monthly basis. The eCommerce world is growing and evolving so fast, and digital marketing moves at the same speed, making it hard for merchants to keep up with the trends and with the competition. And even though some marketing hacks work now, it doesn’t mean they will work again in the future. So in order to help you stay on top of the game, we’ve listed 6 eCommerce trends that you need to follow in the year 2021 below.

1. Focus on Gen Z

Generation Z is the newest generation that was born between the years 1995 and 2015, and they are currently between 5 to 25 years old. In 2019, they are already the most populous generation, and by 2020, Gen Z will account for almost 40% of all the customers. As this newest generation is getting older and entering the workforce - they start to bring in major revenue - both their own as well as revenue from their parents. Globally, Generation Z had over $200 billion in buying power in 2018. Moreover, they’ve influenced an additional $600 billion in spending by their parents.

gen z population graph


Source: MediaKix.com

Gen Z is an optimistic, eco-friendly generation that actually cares about the planet and is passionate about making a change in this world and fight for the values they believe in. These guys are creative, follow the latest fashion trends, tech-influenced, and honestly, they are the most diverse generation in history. On the other hand, GenZers are pretty impatient and money-driven, as most young people are - they depend on technology a lot. Digital marketers jokingly say that they are killing all the businesses that are not online, they almost never check their email box (email marketing doesn’t really work on them), and have an 8-second attention span, so in order to get their attention you need to make sure your marketing strategy is keeping up with eCommerce trends.

It’s important for Gen Z to build a relationship with brands that bring value and care about its customers. And social media is one of the most powerful ways brands can reach out to Gen Z consumers. According to MediaKix, over 85% of Generation Z will learn about new products through social media and 69% will visit a store based on a retailer’s social media post.

So in order to focus your brand on Gen Z, make sure your brand brings value and cares about people and our planet. Review your social media marketing strategy to reach these young tech-dependent people, create interesting and valuable content for them and you will see how much revenue this generation can bring to your brand.

2. Mobile-Friendly Experience

Source: Unsplash.com

According to Quoracreative, 3 out of 4 shoppers use their mobile devices along with physical shopping, and a slow page can result in 97% mobile shopping cart abandonment. So in order to provide customers with the best shopping experience, your website should be mobile-friendly and your customers should be able to open your store’s website from any mobile device. That’s why mobile optimization should become your online business’s main trend in 2020.

Mobile usage is skyrocketing from year to year, becoming a dominant platform and outpacing desktop web usage. Businesses have made mobile marketing a critical part of their digital marketing strategy.

Your brand’s website needs to be easy to find and read via cell phones, and your online store’s website’s speed is also very important, because for example, Google prioritizes better and faster performing websites in its search engine results pages and, of course, no customer wants to browse a slow loading website.

More than 40% of online money transactions are done using a mobile device, and last year 69% of all Shopify purchases during BFCM were made from tablets and cell phones. And depending on the online shop’s products and the main audience these statistics may be even higher.

3. Micro-Influencer Marketing

instagram snapshot

Today influencer marketing plays a huge role in all types of marketing and choosing to work with micro-influencers instead of huge celebrity names (that also charge crazy prices for the ads) helps your online brand to engage more with the targeted audience and boost your brand awareness.

Source: Instagram

Influencer marketing is using the power of social media influencers to show your very specifically targeted audience the products and services that you want to offer. It is also one of the most effective forms of marketing for SEO because links from influencers’ social media pages have significantly high authority. And even though micro-influencers tend to have lesser followers, from thousands to tens-of-thousands of followers, their content usually has a higher level of engagement with their audience. According to PR Daily, micro-influencers have 7 times the engagement rate on Instagram as influencers with larger audiences. Micro-influencers give their audience a sense of knowing them personally, like their friends or family, that’s why followers trust their recommendations. In fact, 70% of teens trust influencers more than traditional celebrities.

So in 2020, it’s not the number of followers that determines true influence. Engagement rates with the audience and real clicks that lead to your website and purchases are what’s really important. This is the main reason why working with micro-influencers is cost-effective for your brand. Influencers have already built their followers base for your products, who are ready to make purchases from the sources, that influencers mention in their posts. And here’s a fun fact - influencer marketing campaigns earn $6.50 for every dollar spent, so that’s a very worthy marketing trend that you should consider in 2020.

4. Social Proof

Social proof is basically showing that other people choose your product, mainly by writing their reviews on your website, making your new customers feel more confident and comfortable purchasing from your online store. And in 2020 77% of shoppers will read reviews before purchasing a product, that’s why it’s up to social proof to make customers’ final decisions during online shopping.

website snapshot

You can use tools like Growave that lets your brand go viral by encouraging users to share your brand on social media and email and build strong customer relationships using your loyalty program.

Source: SM Global Shop

In 2020 reviews and social proof should become one of your most important tools and a trustful resource that brings interest to your brand and helps the customers to decide whether they should shop with you or not. So make sure you have the perfect app that will help you to collect reviews and build your brand’s social proof.

5. BNPL Financing Options for Shoppers

In 2020 in a lot of online stores when you proceed to the check out section your payment options are expanded beyond just credit/debit cards and PayPal, and services like Klarna or Afterpay offer online shoppers a micro installment loan.

Basically, Buy Now Pay Later services give your online customers the freedom to decide when to pay and how to pay for their purchases on that particular website. With one click a $600 shopping cart becomes 4 payments of just $150. As a real alternative to credit cards, BNPL services really do boost sales and customer loyalty.

Source: Shopify News

A survey showed that 40% of people are willing to make an online purchase if they are going to be offered one of the instant financing options with a small interest. So consider adding one of these financial options installments to your shop and watch your sales go up.

6. Shopping with a Purpose

Environmental sustainability is becoming more and more important to a lot of online customers, and we are happy about it. Also, online customers enjoy buying products that have a story behind them, or products that were handcrafted or were made of natural materials and can be recycled. According to Forbes, more people are ready to pay extra money for products from brands with environmental or social impact, as 87% of people replied that they would buy a product with a social and environmental benefit if given the opportunity and 92% will be more likely to trust a company that supports social or environmental issues.

So as environmental sustainability and social impacts are still on customers’ minds in 2020 try to build a sustainable brand, add products that could be recycled or give out a small percentage of your income to charity, And of course let your customers know about it by talking about it on your online shop’s website and social media pages.


In the year 2020 as an online business owner, you can no longer ignore eCommerce innovations and technology if you don’t want to be left behind your competitors, which are only a click away. That’s why being aware of emerging or continuing marketing trends of the eCommerce world is an important part of keeping your online business on the top of the game.

So consider leveraging a few of these trends into this year’s marketing strategy and always stay focused on the marketing updates of your industry. Consider installing useful apps from the Shopify Store to reach your audience and engage with them. This will help you to engage more with your existing and new customers and keep your online business and marketing growing and prospering.

Author Bio

John Davier

Content marketing guru at Mailmunch. I’m passionate about writing content that resonates with people. Live simply, give generously, stay happy.


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