Analysts, along with online retail aficionados have predicted trends that will propel 2017 digital shopping into the future. If you sell online then take note, if Black Friday and Cyber Monday were any indication ($3.34 billion and $3.39 billion in sales respectively), you don’t want to get left behind. Mobile Shopping With the advances in online shopping, particularly Apple Pay an Android Pay, the mobile checkout progress has vastly improved according to Matt Smith, founder of Later. “Consumers are spending more time on mobile devices and mobile internet traffic is now greater than desktop.” Furthermore, “mobile-first social networks like Instagram, and more frequent mobile-based searches on mobile devices, will make it hard for anyone to be a winner in the ecommerce space without a huge focus on mobile.” Social Media Shopping By now you’ve seen Instagram and Pinterest roll out their online shopping features and by tapping in on this at the beginning will give you a big boost. Most recently Instagram made it possible for brands to tag products featured in their photos. This is huge since users are immediately able to tap on the product and be taken to the product page on the brands website to complete checkout. Social media shopping will continue to influence consumer behaviour, and according to Bart Mroz, cofounder & CEO, SUMO Heavy, “It will become a bigger driver of direct transactions.” Personalized Retargeting Now more than ever, provided relevant marketing to your customers (and potential customers) is key. Consumers know all the tricks used online and are quick to skim over the same old ads. Instead, by opting for hyper targeted ads based on specific pages a consumer has viewed on your site, specific products they’ve purchased etc, your chances of converting them into sales shoots way up. Virtual Retail This is a newer, more exciting form of customer engagement that’s popping up and sure to be big in 2017. “Virtual reality (VR) is changing the retail landscape by fusing together the offline and online environment for enhanced customer engagement,” says Paul Miller, CMO Americas, Xero. “VR is making it possible for sportswear shoppers to test out gear in environments it would be used in or try on clothing in a virtual dressing room.” Imagine drastic cuts to returns thanks to VR!