2020 eCommerce Trends - A Look at Platform Growth & Consumer Spending Patterns

2020 eCommerce Trends - A Look at Platform Growth & Consumer Spending Patterns

Wednesday, July 29, 2020Eric Zegarski

The State of eCommerce in 2020 & Beyond

2020 has been a year of change. It’s a year that has forced many businesses to adapt to what will seem like the new shopping normal moving forward. The push to “go online” fast was caused by COVID-19. At first there was panic, consumers were scrambling to snag essential goods. Some profit privateers took advantage of consumers' willingness to spend. They set up eCommerce sites to sell popular items like toilet paper and sanitation products at an inflated price. Beyond that scramble, major brands and businesses were adapting too. These statistics from Forbes illustrate how quickly things changed: 
  • U.S. retailers' online year-over-year (YoY) revenue growth is up 68% as of mid-April, surpassing an earlier peak of 49% in early January. 
  • There's been a 129% year-over-year growth in U.S. & Canadian e-commerce orders as of April 21 and an impressive 146% growth in all online retail orders. 
  • Online conversion rates increased 8.8% in February, reflecting a level of shopping urgency typically seen during Cyber Mondays, according to Quantum Metric. 

Different Demographic Spending Habits 

Reaction to the pandemic has not been uniform across the board. Each generational cohort has reacted to it differently  

Millennial and Gen Z  
Younger generations are more concerned about the pandemic. A survey done by Agility finds that 96 percent of this demographic is concerned with the impact of the pandemic on the economy. As a result, their spending habits have shifted from spending on experiences. They’re more focused on saving and buying essentials.  

Gen X and Boomers  
While they still show some concern about COVID-19's impact on the economy, COVID-19 isn’t a major concern when it comes to spending habits. According to a study done by Agility. 24 percent of Boomers and 34 percent Gen Z said they were influenced by the virus when making purchase decisions.   

Popularity of eCommerce  

According to Shopify’s COO, Harley Finkelstein, the number of new stores created on Shopify grew 62% between March 13 and April 24, compared to the prior six weeks. Beyond the growth in Shopify’s new user base, we can examine how different industries have grown since March. Thanks to Klaviyo, here’s a look at consumer eCommerce spending growth in 4 popular industries:  

Apparel and Accessories  


Health and Beauty  

Sporting Goods  

Retail is Taking a Break  

Even though the holiday shopping season is still a long way away. Major retailers like Walmart and Target are already announcing their plans. This year both organizations stated that they will remain closed on Thanksgiving. For many Americans, Thanksgiving is the kick-off of the holiday shopping season with Black Friday starting at 12am the next day.  

Retail workers will get a much-deserved rest and an opportunity to enjoy the time with their families. No doubt, more retailers will follow and shut their doors for Thanksgiving. As a result, shoppers will be looking to score deals online.  

The Future of Commerce - Online First Economy  

This rise in eCommerce is sure to last once things settle down. Whether this is the new “normal” or not, consumer spending patterns will change. Right now, consumers that would normally prefer to shop in store are forced to shop online. As a result, they are being conditioned to shop online. It’s safe to say through this conditioning they will habitually shop online moving forward. Retailers should be focused on ensuring their strategy is "online first" with many uncertainties leading into the holiday season.  

Black Friday Cyber Monday  

The time to start planning for BFCM is now! With eCommerce's growth, Black Friday will be predominately online this year. Therefore, getting ready for BFCM this year involves more than just a clever marketing campaign. Beyond having your advertising, social media, and automated emails in order, here are things you should include in your BFCM planning: 
  • Stocking appropriate inventory levels  
  • Having ample shipping and packaging materials (boxes, label paper, packing peanuts) on hand 
  • Having the right fulfillment tech stack (ShipperHQ & ShipStation)  
  • Auditing eCommerce store for dead links, loading speed and UX 

Crafting Your Perfect eCommerce Strategy Fall – Winter 2020 and Beyond 

It’s up you to craft your own strategy to dominate your market. The information above is just a sampling of what you can find with a little bit of research. Trends in your given industry as well as what your competitors are doing give you a great forecast of things to come. Your focus should be on finding a strategic avenue that will differentiate you from your competition. You should also evaluate your current commerce tech stack. It’s essential that your eCommerce platform, supporting apps, and ERP can support your eCommerce goals. You must craft your own Blue Ocean Strategy.  


eBridge is Here to Support Your eCommerce Growth  

Our iPaaS (integration Platform as a Service) is universal, meaning there are pre-built connectors for leading eCommerce platforms, ERP solutions, and major EDI trading partners. Therefore, as your needs change, we’re able to accommodate your evolving tech stack.  

Integration also allows you to focus on running your business. With your commerce systems connected, your team won’t be bogged down with manual data entry. You’ll avoid the costly errors that come from manual data entry. In addition, you’ll have a better snapshot of your business, be able to fulfill orders faster, and save money.  

eBridge is hosted on Microsoft Azure, therefore ensuring an almost 99.9% uptime and industry leading security. With an integration solution from eBridge, you can ensure that your commerce network is connected and communicating data bi-directionally. 


>>  Request a Demo
>>  Map Your Ideal Integration