8 ecommerce marketing trends to master for your best customer experience in 2024

10 min

Goldman Sachs predicted strong income growth and cooling interest rates for 2024, which has the power to give your ecommerce business a much-appreciated boost. In addition, global ecommerce revenues are expected to reach over $3.6 trillion in 2024

As conditions improve and online retail sales continue to rise, it’s essential to be aware of the top ecommerce trends for 2024 so you can ensure you take full advantage of this opportunity.

2024 ecommerce trends: the big picture

The clear theme for ecommerce in 2024 will be customer-centric. Success for online retailers in 2024 depends on how well they can leverage newer solutions like AI and build smart tech stacks that help them deliver a better customer experience (CX). 

In addition to using omnichannel strategies to attract more future customers, we also expect to see a shift toward using tools like machine learning to improve personalization in ecommerce stores, leaning into omnichannel experiences, and driving ROI by increasing loyalty from existing customers. 

8 ecommerce marketing trends to watch for in 2024

While prioritizing the customer is nothing new in the world of online retail, here are 8 new trends you can leverage to meet and exceed customer expectations in the coming years.

Flexibility becomes the tech stack priority

Ecommerce tech stacks will be built to give sellers the ability to be agile and respond quickly to a changing environment. Examples include cloud-native applications, headless ecommerce websites, APIs, and omnichannel marketing platforms

You don’t want to have to redo your ecommerce stack every few years. Instead, choose foundational platforms that make it easy to adjust your channel strategy without heavy financial or time investments.

It’s also helpful to find tools that offer a variety of native integrations so you can update your tech stack without having to replace software. For maximum flexibility, choose tools with an API that allows for custom integrations.

AI and machine learning supercharge personalization efforts

In 2024, the use of technological advancements like artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms will become the norm for many industries, including ecommerce. 

One of the best ways you can optimize the value your ecommerce brand gets from these tools is to use them to power advanced segmentation and create more personalized shopping experiences. The better your personalization gets, the more you can position your brand as one that truly understands each buyer, allowing you to increase conversions and boost your revenue per customer.

Some fantastic examples of advanced segmentation can be found on streaming and video-hosting websites, like Netflix and YouTube. Netflix’s homepage looks different for each user thanks to the brand’s use of machine learning scores to power personalized recommendations based on user actions, such as the content they watch and language settings they use.

In addition to customizing home screens, Netflix uses advanced personalization to provide content recommendations in its email campaigns.

A personalized email from Netflix.

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A personalized email from Netflix.

Online retail brands can use this example to inspire a personalized online shopping experience based on user actions and preferences. After all, who’s to say that ecommerce sites can’t be as personalized as your Netflix account page?

Pako Lorente is one brand that’s taking advantage of machine learning for more effective personalization. The fashion brand uses AI-powered tools to recommend bestselling and complementary products based on buyer selections. Adding this functionality resulted in over $50,000 USD in recommended items being added to customers’ carts in one month.

In addition to AI-fueled recommendations on product and checkout pages, you can use advanced personalization workflows to tailor your marketing using behavior-based segmentation

Segmentation based on behavior goes beyond demographic customer data to understand and target different groups of buyers, such as for example price-conscious vs. impulsive. By analyzing customer behavior, you can tailor your messaging to have more of an impact on purchase decisions. 

For instance, price-conscious buyers might respond best to discount codes and bundle offers, while impulsive shoppers could be more likely to convert when sent product announcements or limited-edition items.

Multichannel customer journey takes the lead

Implementing a multichannel marketing strategy helps you ensure a great buying experience and support for existing customers.

Starbucks is an excellent example of a brand that leverages multichannel customer touchpoints to create a seamless experience that builds loyalty

The rewards app can be used to view the menu, find physical stores, access promotions, and place orders ahead of time. Members can also use money and rewards on the smartphone app as an in-store payment method.

Starbucks mobile app.

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Starbucks mobile app.

The brand also has an active social media presence and supports the rewards program with email campaigns that keep users engaged. 

Starbucks rewards email campaign.

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Starbucks rewards email campaign.

To get even more out of your multichannel marketing strategy, you can combine it with personalization by tailoring your content based on the stage of the sales funnel a person is in. 

At the top of the funnel, you can create different content based on buyer personas and audience segments. Once a lead has discovered your brand, you can lean into behavior-based personalization, such as abandoned cart emails or product recommendations based on their previous searches. 

After someone converts, you still want to give them a personalized omnichannel experience. For instance, you could send them birthday promotions via SMS and email newsletters tailored to their purchase history.  

When it comes to the post-purchase part of the customer journey, common channels include email, live chat, phone, and social media. According to a report by Ultimate, email is the fastest-growing customer support channel, beating out options like phone calls and chatbots. 

The report also suggests that leveraging AI tools to automate CX will be key in empowering brands to eliminate manual work and invest in new channels. In fact, 56% of brands say they’re more likely to invest in AI-powered automation in 2024 than they were in 2023.

In addition to adding several channels and automation, you can improve your multichannel optimization by defining a clear tone of voice (ToV) for your brand and keeping it consistent across all channels to provide a seamless experience.

For inspiration, we turn once again to Starbucks. Whether you’re online, using the app, scrolling social media, or in a store, the brand does an excellent job of using consistent visual elements and ToV to create a customer journey that feels cohesive

Starbucks customer support channels.

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Starbucks customer support channels.

A/B testing and highly optimized communications go hand in hand

A/B testing may not be the newest kid on the technology block, but it’s primed to be one of the most effective tools in ecommerce marketing kits in 2024. 

As automation helps reduce manual tasks, brands will have more time available to focus on honing their messaging for each audience in every channel to increase engagement and conversion rates.

You can use A/B testing to optimize a wide range of marketing communications, including websites, landing pages, social media posts, and emails. By testing across all channels, you can design a UX that’s built for maximum engagement and loyalty.

For instance, mobile accessories ecommerce brand Mobile Fun used automation, segmentation, and A/B testing to drive 49.17% open rates in its winning email campaign. 

Localization and globalization are both on the rise

We expect to see an interesting increase in both globalization and localization in ecommerce. What this means is that more customers are willing to buy global, but brands still want the experience to feel local

In the next year, 89% of marketers plan to translate content into additional languages in an effort to build stronger customer relationships.

McDonald’s is an exceptional example of localization, using country-specific Instagram accounts to spotlight product recommendations based on local menus:

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Post about Pepper Chicken McMuffin from McDonald’s Thailand.

Brands with a focus on growing international channels and revenue will need to embrace a multi-local strategy to win more ecommerce sales and create loyal customers. 

The good news is you don’t need a separate social media account or product selection for each country where you have customers. 

One resource-effective way to do this is by using email localization, which involves personalizing campaigns and newsletters to reflect the language and culture of a geographic segment. A powerful email automation platform with advanced segmentation and personalization tools can help you do this at scale. 

You can also deliver emails at the best time based on local time zones. Plus, personalizing email bodies and CTAs will help optimize your engagement metrics, as customized email bodies have a higher open rate (30.26%) than generic messages (26.55%).

Besides using a customer’s native language, you can tailor content and offer promotions based on the most relevant holidays. For instance, Lunar New Year sales would be pertinent in many Asian countries, while Thanksgiving and Fourth of July discounts would make sense for U.S. customers.

McDonald’s does a great job here, too:

Diwali post on Instagram from McDonald’s India.

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Diwali post on Instagram from McDonald’s India.

Mobile retail continues to grow

Mobile retail sales in the ecommerce industry are expected to grow to $534.18 billion in the U.S. alone in 2024. To take full advantage of this trend, you can add SMS messages to your marketing playbook. This often-underused tool allows you to create value for repeat/existing customers and drive sales. 

Ulta Beauty does an excellent job of using SMS notifications to share promotions and let customers know about in-store sales and events. 

Text campaigns from Ulta Beauty.

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Text campaigns from Ulta Beauty.

Text messages can also be used to announce new products or generate urgency by letting customers know when a deal is ending or a popular item is running out. You can automate bulk SMS campaigns and use tools like advanced personalization and shorter links to improve the UX on mobile devices.

Shoppable ads create a streamlined experience

Social media’s role in ecommerce continues to expand from being a marketing channel to a sales channel, as well. 

You can expect to see significant growth potential for ecommerce brands in TikTok after the release of its U.S. ecommerce platform in September 2023. A study predicts that the percentage of TikTok users who shop directly through the app will increase to 39.9% by 2026, up from 5.7% in 2020.

American Eagle is one brand that’s already leveraging the power of social commerce on TikTok. Shoppable posts like this one highlight specific products and turn brand awareness into purchases:

American Eagle shoppable TikTok post.

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American Eagle shoppable TikTok post.

In addition to selling directly through social media platforms, you can create lead magnets to capture and nurture prospects through marketing automation. 

Tip: To get the most out of shoppable ads, keep new leads engaged and increase conversions by sending emails with positive customer reviews and relevant discount codes.

Promotional email from American Eagle.

Brands increase their focus on repeat buyer

Building customer loyalty will become a higher priority for ecommerce brands that want to generate more stable revenue sources. The key to creating a UX that encourages return purchases lies heavily in post-purchase personalization.

Here’s an excellent example from Pulp & Press, which uses post-purchase emails to provide product use tips: 

Pulp & Press email campaign.

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Pulp & Press email campaign.

The brand uses confirmation emails to let customers know their order has been received and provides tips to prepare them to get the most out of the product. This type of personalized education can increase customer satisfaction and retention. It also positions Pulp & Press as a caring and helpful resource.

Besides paying more attention to post-purchase communications, we’ll also see brands tailor their online shopping experiences and email marketing campaigns to send smarter cross-selling suggestions. Marketing automation will be crucial for scaling post-purchase personalization to drive increased revenue.

GetResponse MAX offers several features that can support you here, from autoresponders and transactional emails to personalized campaigns and beautifully designed newsletters. For example, Livrarias Curitiba used GetReponse’s email automation tools to improve the delivery rate and CX of its emails, resulting in a 200% revenue growth in one year.

Preparing your ecommerce strategy for 2024

In 2024, ecommerce trends will revolve heavily around creating seamless, high-quality experiences for new and existing customers. Your brand can unlock new growth potential by leveraging tools like AI, machine learning, and automation to power highly personalized and flexible omnichannel strategies.

If you’re looking for a powerful marketing automation platform that can help you manage an agile omnichannel strategy from one central place, explore GetResponse MAX today.