According to Sue Azari, eCommerce Lead at AppsFlyer, global retail ecommerce sales are expected to continue to rise in 2023, presenting both challenges and opportunities for retailers, specifically in Africa. To be successful next year, retailers must focus on creating better customer experiences and staying ahead of changing e-commerce trends.

Mobile commerce has been on the rise for some time now, and the pandemic has accelerated this trend. According to AppsFlyer benchmark data, total mobile app installs on the African continent grew by 17% in the first part of 2022 compared to the beginning of 2021. With more consumers buying and purchasing products via mobile devices, expects m-commerce sales to see significant growth in 2023 and beyond. Retailers must prioritize mobile solutions, such as mobile payment options like Apple and Google Pay, to meet the growing demand for mobile commerce. Additionally, retailers need to focus on delivering exceptional customer experiences on mobile as mobile is becoming the preferred shopping channel for consumers.

After a period of shopping primarily online during the pandemic, consumers are returning to in-store experiences. Retailers are expanding their number of stores and online retailers are opening physical pop-up stores to meet this demand. To improve the in-store experience, retailers are incorporating technology like AI and apps. These tools allow associates to access customer account details, provide better service, and ensure in-store inventory is reflected online in real time. Shoprite is a prime example of this, having implemented AI in its South African stores, with the aim of improving the customer journey through the store.

Social commerce is another trend that is expected to see significant growth in 2023. The global social commerce market is projected to reach $604.5 billion by 2027, fueled by high levels of engagement on social media platforms. Retailers should explore ways to integrate social media into their e-commerce strategies, such as using social media platforms for product discovery and online sales. Additionally, retailers can use social media platforms to build relationships with customers and build a sense of community around their brand.

Personalization has become a key trend in e-commerce and is expected to grow in 2023. Consumers are looking for personalized experiences that meet their individual needs and preferences. To meet this trend, retailers must use data and technology to personalize their marketing campaigns, product recommendations, and customer service. In addition, retailers can offer product customization options, such as custom clothing or jewelry.

The e-commerce industry is constantly evolving, and retailers must adapt to remain competitive. By keeping an eye on these trends and focusing on customer experiences, retailers can seize the opportunities ahead in 2023. However, retailers must also be aware of the challenges that these trends bring, such as the need to innovate and constantly improve. improve, balancing the cost of technology and customization while still keeping the target market in mind.