A 2023 report predicts that revenue from livestream shopping will exceed $31 billion by the end of the year, nearly tripling the market's value in 2021. Search volume for "livestream shopping" has seen a remarkable 450% increase in the past five years. This surge is indicative of the growing interest in this shopping format.
By 2026, the report anticipates that livestream shopping could generate a whopping $67.8 billion, constituting over 5% of total ecommerce revenue. While China has already embraced this trend with annual revenues surpassing $500 billion in 2022, the United States is catching up, driven mainly by younger generations' interest.
Younger generations in the United States, notably Gen Z and millennials, are at the forefront of adopting livestream shopping. Approximately 56% of Gen Z, 54% of millennials, and 50% of Gen X express their intention to attend live shopping events in the future. Although 31% of adults are unaware of live shopping events, these statistics demonstrate the potential for significant growth in this sector.
Livestream shopping is most popular among Gen Z and millennials, with fashion items being the top choice for 36% of livestream events. Beauty and fresh food products also rank highly, at 7.6% and 7.4% of livestreams, respectively. For instance, the 2023 New York Fashion Week featured livestream shopping, with brands like Adore Me allowing viewers to purchase runway looks directly from the stream.
Additionally, platforms like Whatnot have capitalized on livestream shopping, focusing on collectibles and fandom specialty items. The engagement and connection between buyers and sellers on platforms like Whatnot have garnered significant attention, as demonstrated by a more than 1,000% increase in search interest in "Whatnot."
In April 2023, DataReportal revealed that nearly 25% of individuals use social media to discover products for purchase. In 2021, 68% of consumers made at least one social commerce purchase, a number that surged to 98% by 2022. Moreover, the average spending on social commerce has increased, reaching $518 in 2022, with estimates projecting it to reach $938 per buyer by 2025.
Social media not only drives purchases but also serves as a primary channel for brand research. Over 48% of individuals aged 16-34 identify social networks as their top source for brand information. Recognizing this, ecommerce brands are prioritizing social media marketing, with Shopify reporting that nearly one-third of businesses plan to increase their social media marketing efforts. By 2026, total social media ad spending is expected to exceed $358 billion.
Pinterest has witnessed significant growth in shopping ads, with "Pinterest ads" search interest on the rise. The platform's shoppable ad revenue grew over 40% in the last year alone, and it is projected to surpass $4 billion in ad revenue by 2026. Additionally, Pinterest has introduced new features, such as the ability for brands to upload digital catalogs and purchase Premiere Spotlight ads.
Since most Pinterest searches are unbranded, Premiere Spotlight ads have the potential to drive revenue by increasing discoverability.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is poised to revolutionize the ecommerce landscape. Searches for "ecommerce AI" have surged by more than 400% in the past five years, underscoring the growing interest in AI applications within the industry.
AI offers unparalleled visibility into the consumer journey, collecting data on browsing behavior, add-to-cart rates, time to purchase, and cart abandonment. With more than 70% of consumers expecting a personalized experience, AI can deliver tailored recommendations and streamline the shopping process. Brands that provide effective personalization can expect a 40% boost in revenue.
AI-powered shopping assistants, similar to chatbots, are becoming increasingly popular. These assistants help customers find products based on their preferences, budget, and other factors. Companies like Shopify, Mercari, and ShopWith AI have introduced this technology, enhancing the shopping experience.
Generative AI platforms like Copy.ai and Jasper are transforming content creation. They can generate copy for blogs, social media, and email marketing, ensuring brand consistency and efficiency. Ecommerce companies are increasingly adopting these platforms to streamline their content production.
Extended reality (XR), encompassing virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), is gaining prominence in ecommerce. Search volume for "extended reality" has soared by over 800% since 2019, indicating a growing interest in XR technologies.
XR technologies enable immersive experiences, allowing consumers to virtually interact with products. Consumers can test products via VR and AR, reducing the likelihood of returns. Applications include virtual try-ons for beauty products, superimposing furniture into customers' spaces, and creating virtual stores in the metaverse.
Virtual try-on technology is particularly vital for beauty ecommerce, allowing customers to visualize makeup products in real time. Luxury brands like Lancome and YSL Beauty, as well as retailers like Target, have integrated this feature.
Companies like Emperia have taken XR to the next level, creating virtual stores for brands such as Tommy Hilfiger, Dior, and Bloomingdales. These virtual stores offer unique shopping experiences and are expected to see further growth.
Meeting evolving delivery expectations is a challenge for ecommerce retailers. Just 3% of businesses believe they are "very capable" of satisfying current delivery demands, while 70% consider themselves "somewhat capable." However, delivery is a critical factor influencing consumer choices, with 66% of consumers switching retailers due to delivery options.
Free shipping is a powerful revenue driver, with customers ordering
more and spending more when offered this option. Brands that can meet delivery demands are likely to benefit from increased revenue. Same-day delivery is gaining traction, with Amazon and Target expanding their capabilities in this area.
Last-mile delivery accounts for 53% of shipping costs and is dominated by legacy providers like UPS, FedEx, and USPS. However, software companies like Shippo are streamlining the shipping process, offering automation, rate comparison, and integration with ecommerce platforms. These solutions aim to reduce costs and improve efficiency.
The future of ecommerce is bright, with revenue projections reaching unprecedented heights. Brands are leveraging AI and XR technologies to enhance customer experiences, while livestream shopping and social commerce offer additional avenues for engagement. As ecommerce continues to evolve, staying at the forefront of these innovations will be crucial for brands seeking to thrive in this dynamic digital landscape.