All I Want For Christmas…
With all the unpredictable change in 2017, it’s only fitting that this holiday season looks to be the first time online purchases will exceed in-store. Let’s face it, trends such as cryptocurrency and the ever expanding access to mobile internet technology are forever altering the way that we make purchases.
According to a Deloitte study, the greatest generation will be the lone one to make more in-store purchases this year. The rest of us from the boomers down to gen-z have different habits. While crypto-currency is nothing new, there is an ever expanding list of legitimate vendors who accept it for transactions. A far cry from the illegitimate vendorsthat helped make bitcoin what it is today.
On a technical level, both Instagram and Snap stories integrating the ‘swipe-up’ product feature that utilizes external links has been significant. Snap now recognizes objects you take photos of and Instagram is pioneering the landscape with product tags that integrate with ecommerce platforms like Shopify. These forays into fused shopping experiences with social browsing are all aimed at capturing the $200 Billion millennial buying power and are only some examples of a new wave of purchasing habits. Social commerce will enable us not just to be inspired by products and experiences, but also to purchase them directly.
As shopping moves to our news feeds, we’re no longer satisfied with just watching other people live their best lives on our timelines. The aforementioned Deloitte study also shows that this year will mark the highest spending for millenials on travel and experiential gifts. While having nice stuff doesn’t hurt, having a rich experience is something that can never depreciate.
While the role of social media in our holiday purchasing is evolving, there are a few things to note. Voice assistants like Amazon Alexa, are challenging the way we search for and pick out our favorite products. Augmented Reality, will totally change the way we buy and market products, experiences and purchases in the coming years. Amazon and Walmart are still kings and are quick to adapt and evolve many times faster than any competition. Whatever the future holds, with 51% of people planning to spend their shopping budget online compared to 42% in store, we’re in for a big shift in the way we pay for things. If you’re a consumer, you win no matter what, if you’re a brand, we’ll that’s a different story.