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  • Writer's pictureAnna-Louise McDougall

7 eCommerce trends to master in 2022 if you want to dominate online

With Australia home to the 11th largest eCommerce market globally, welcoming 2022’s eCommerce trends into your strategy should be something of a priority. Fear not! Online shopping trends have a longer shelf life than say, the Miu Miu micro-mini, so getting it right is well justified.

However, it’s not that black and white. While global eCommerce sales are expected to reach $6 trillion by 2024, getting in on the action won’t go as planned if you’re implementing trending plugins and pop-ups to simply check a box.

Image of hands typing at a laptop, surrounded by shopping cart icons
In 2022, brands must consider their customers, not as virtual wallets, but as people

The state of things

Online retail will always be driven by consumer demand and shopping preferences. But, it's 2022, and brands must consider their customers, not as virtual wallets, but (shock, horror) as people. Brands are notoriously targeted for not being ‘woke’ enough by their communities, thanks to the likes of diet Prada, greenwashing accusations, and public awareness of excess stock disposal. Today, being agile and smart means being privy to your audience’s changing values, authentic behaviours, and belief systems.

Where eCommerce is concerned, this largely points to privacy. According to Shopify’s Market Credibility Study, 57% of customers are increasingly concerned with how you’re using their data, and 61% won’t give their data away unless required.

Meanwhile, advancements in fashion technology and the growth of marketplaces means online sellers are popping up like lemonade stands. Being discovered online and retaining customers while keeping acquisition costs down is becoming near impossible. And, though the digitisation of shopping sky-rocketed like Falcon 9 after reemerging from COVID, eCommerce today is hellbent on rehumanising the experience.

Here are the top eCommerce trends for 2022 and beyond to play to your advantage, for you and your customers.

1. Cookies you can count on

So, how exactly do you gather the right data and establish trust with customers for greater loyalty? Let’s start with how you use their data. We talked a lot about personalisation over the last year, but at what point does your VIP sale SMS stop being personal, if it ever was?

Do your customers feel individually serviced by your personalisation or are they feeling a little stalked? According to Shopify, consumers are over three times more likely to abandon brands that over-personalise, compared to those that don’t do enough. Right now, if you’re including too much personal data in your digital comms, your customer is probably getting the ick.

Meme of Drake shunning the words "Packets of data used to track and basically spy on people digitally" but happy about image of choc chip cookies
Cookies are a sometimes food?

As third-party cookies phase-out, first-party data is where it’s at. As in, acquiring permissible information directly from your customer base that you can really “own”. Even better? Go zero.

Zero-party data is data that a customer intentionally and proactively shares with a brand. This could be what emails they choose to receive, their purchase intentions, and how an individual wants to be recognised. This is the kind of authentic data you can use to provide customers with truly useful, personal experiences.

2. Content over acquisition costs

There are an estimated 12–24 million eCommerce sites across the globe. More stores are competing for your customer, which means digital advertising now costs you more to do a lot less.

What can you do? Create captivating, relevant content, and use your creativity to explore new ways to attract customers and build on these relationships. And it doesn’t end at the checkout!

You could design a post-purchase experience and use content to personalise it. Create garment care videos, offer styling advice and build communities around those who also purchased that item.

Subscriptions are another rewarding model for fashion brands due to their:

a) ability to be tailored to the unique needs and wants of customers, and

b) ability to cater to customers who highly value convenience.

If you can nail this kind of content, it will open the door to being able to predict recurring revenue, buy accurate quantities, and increase LTV.

3. CRO and headless commerce

SEO is cool, but CRO is cooler.

Image of a Ecomm website (represented by a male) impressed by a female passerby (representing CRO), meanwhile the female (representing SEO) that he is holding hands with is unimpressed with him
SEO is cool, but CRO is cooler.

And when combined with headless commerce, you’ll have yourself a pretty bounce-proof website. Two separate trends perhaps, but to explain them as one might be more prudent.

Firstly, CRO is probably something you do a lot of already, but now you can use a fancy acronym. This is pretty much always a Major Trend, because you could be great at getting new traffic, but what you’re not doing is converting the traffic to match your site visits. The fact is, the more the everyday shopper understands UX technology, the more they’ll expect from your website. For example, the time it takes a product to load.