Online trading platforms are becoming more popular among Internet users. As studies show only in 2023, the number of sales made online increased by 65%. As for the furnishing retail, here the rapid growth of trade occurred in the last couple of years, with the implementation of the latest IT technologies, such as AI, Big Data Analytics and, of course, Augmented Reality.
Experts say that in the future this industry will become even more competitive. Therefore, brands and manufacturers should think of how to promote their products online. E-commerce trends provide many useful advice and tips on how to get around competitors and attract the attention of potential buyers. However, each industry has its own specifics and features that must be taken into account. Studies show that the best home furnishing stores use all available methods to attract customers. Here are the home furnishing trends in 2023 that will help to improve the online store, increase sales and customer satisfaction.
1. Rich Content and Visualization
The main attraction for consumers remains content. It is important to demonstrate to the buyer the goods that he purchases. Since the customer needs to know what exactly he will receive after the purchase in home furnishing online stores.
Focus not only on the technical characteristics of an item but also on its detailed description. Many brands focus on the functionality and convenience of the offered items. However, this way they miss the way that customers use when making decisions. Add a little emotion to the description, tell what the buyer will feel when he receives the bought item.
Another detail that is of particular importance to online home furnishing stores is a visual representation of the goods. Consumers have become more demanding not only in the quality and quantity of images. Now it’s not enough to photograph a unit of goods from several angles.
With the development of technology, the consumer wants more visual information, so additional media materials, such as video, must be included in the description. However, the undoubted advantage will be the use of augmented reality or 360-degree video, which will allow the customer to consider the goods in the interior and from all sides.
Improving the user experience, allowing them to practically touch the product, the seller almost bridges the gap between offline and online stores.
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2. Mobile Strategy
This trend is common for all e-commerce businesses. Mobile phone users are increasingly eager to shop through this gadget and expect experience improvement.
This is where the main question appears. What you should invest your efforts and budget in a mobile version of a site or an application? Each of the options has its advantages and disadvantages.
Home furnishing stores online provide more opportunities for SEO optimization and reaching a wider audience. Thanks to indexing in search engines, retailers can attract more potential consumers. On the other hand, applications allow configuring other useful features, such as personalization, notifications, consumer recommendations.
However, it is necessary to take into account that users give preference to only a few applications that are used constantly. But little-used applications are deleted over time. Since the home furnishing stores do not provide products that are often purchased by users, the application runs the risk of falling into the second category.
When making the final decision, home furnishing retailers should consider several key factors: the target audience, the necessary functions, and the estimated budget.
3. Omnichannel Shopping Opportunities
In the existing variety of trading platforms, it is quite difficult to get lost. That is why many sellers refuse omnichannel, preferring to focus on one, or two ways to engage customers.
Omnichannel retailing online doesn’t mean you have to be everywhere. You just have to be where your customers are. Carefully study your target audience, explore its needs and select the channels of engagement that will bring you the most benefits. A smart omnichannel strategy can increase the retailer’s turnover several times in a short time.
Here is a simple example of what an omnichannel strategy might be. Your client will find out about you on one of the trading platforms, where he makes a purchase. You send him the goods with additional booklets, information about the loyalty program and a link to similar products or additional units of the same collection.
Targeted advertising and recommendations from search engines and social networks will remind the buyer that he was already your client. This motivates him to look for similar products on your website or trading platform.
After the second purchase, send an e-mail to the customer with a notification about the sale, new products and promotions (if a subscription has been made). Also, do not forget to offer subscriptions to your pages on social networks and the ability to share a link to the purchased product.
Different types of retailing stores may use different schemes. In such a simple way, you will be able to reach a wide audience and ensure their presence in several places at once.
4. Online Consultations
According to the survey, over 30% of respondents expressed their desire for video consultations with store representatives as the most preferred virtual experience during the holiday season. It is reasonable for home furnishing business to utilize a blend of livestream shopping and virtual consultations to inform customers about their products. They offer a brief rundown of their offerings and showcase real people using them in real time.
By combining livestreams and personalized consultations, retailers can minimize the gap between online and in-store shopping. This approach can help customers feel less like they are missing out on the in-person shopping experience.
Purchasing high-value items like beds or sofas online can make people hesitant as they prefer to inspect them in person. However, with virtual consultations, customers can now connect with store associates to get a live demonstration of the products. This enables customers to assess the product’s texture and quality as if they were physically present in-store. Essentially, it’s akin to having a personal shopper at their service.
The concern for a brand’s sustainable values remains among the top eCommerce trends. Currently, 44% of global consumers are inclined to purchase from a brand, demonstrating a clear sustainability commitment. As we approach 2023, brands must prioritize sustainably produced goods and show their dedication to preserving the environment for customers.
Customers have placed greater emphasis on understanding how and where goods are produced. It is not solely about the final product but also the processes involved in creating it. Over the last six years, online searches for “sustainable goods” have surged globally by 71%, particularly in affluent nations like the United Kingdom, the United States, and Canada.
Customers are no longer paying lip service to sustainability; they are backing up their beliefs with their purchasing power. Consequently, home furnishing retail businesses address this issue. In 2023, over 50% of companies have made enhancing sustainability one of their primary objectives, while 40% have focused on improving manufacturing efficiency.
6. Don’t Forget About Personalization
To make home furnishing retailing successful, you must fully focus on consumers. It is important to study their habits, preferences and take them into account when offering goods.
Despite warnings regarding the provision of personal data, consumers are willing to disclose it in exchange for a truly personalized experience.
Your search engine should contain the necessary filters. Besides, for registered users, consider filtering by preference. Based on the entered data and previously viewed pages, send a selection of suitable products, notify about a reduction in the price of products of interest.
Do not forget about the target home furnishing experience. On the product page, place simple recommendations like: “With this product is also buy” or “You might also like.” You can also conduct a short survey of your consumers to find out what they want to see in your online store.
7. Provide Convenient Payment and Checkout Services
The complex and lengthy process of registering a new user is in second place in the list of reasons for refusing to buy online. On the first one is the high price of goods or delivery and taxes. This means that your checkout process should be as short as possible and with additional options. Offer to register using social networks or allow guest (temporary) access for a one-time purchase. Do not forget to notify about the benefits of registration. For detailed information about the buyer, you can send a notification about the need to fill out a profile.
Besides, provide several payment options for the goods. The process itself should not take much time. Moreover, it should be convenient to do with any gadget. Include several modern popular payment systems in your payment methods. Be sure that all financial transactions are additionally encrypted. Notify your consumers.
Improve your online retailing store, using this advice. Studies show that about 48% of consumers would like stores to simplify and improve this particular part of online orders.
According to recent home furnishing industry studies, the use of the latest technology can accelerate the development of the entire sphere tenfold. However, online retailing must also undergo major changes. Many stores offer similar products, and to stand out in this variety, you need to create a unique user experience. The e-commerce industry trends described above take into account several important factors, the main of which is customer focus. Please, be free to use these tips to improve your online store, grow and develop.
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