2022 E-commerce Predictions

One of my favorite topics is discussing the future and a couple of years ago with the help of my friend Jaret we put together the first annual 5 year e-commerce predictions survey.  At StatBid Summit this year I presented the results from our 2nd survey 2022 E-commerce Predictions.


Shilo Jones:        Okay, so, I'm going to kind of also take a little bit of a zoom back picture. Something like what were talking about earlier today. We're going to look at predictions for e-commerce in the year 2022. It's the second year we've done it, an annual e-commerce prediction survey. I'm going to kind of over the results that we just compiled this week actually. It should be fun ... I think there was twenty-some questions. I'm going to try to get them all. 
                    First of all, why do we kind of want to try to predict the future? I think it's really important to get a good sense of where you want to take the company; where you want to be in the future. You got to know where you want to go before you're going to have a chance to get there. I think taking some time to figure that out, like Lou obviously has done for his business, I think is a really good idea. 
                    This year in the survey, we actually did a couple things differently. We focused on trying to get actionable objectively provable questions. In five years time, you can look back and say, “Okay, this actually happened or this didn't happen.” 
                    The other thing we did is we actually added a sampling of consumers into the study as well. We found that consumers actually answered fairly consistently with industry vendors and retailers like ourselves.
                    Okay, we looked at a lot of histograms. I'm going to jump right in. Okay, what do we think e-commerce is going to be as a percentage of retail in five years from now? Basically, everyone thinks it's going to keep growing. We've seen the biggest growth we've seen since 2011 last year. We're at about 9% right now. Most people here think it's going to be at least 20%. What is that going to mean for brick and mortar retail? We're going to see all those empty malls. 
                    Average delivery time. Since 2014, we're at 8.3 days. Amazon's continued to drive this. We're down to 5.1 days as of 2016. Everyone pretty much thinks we're going to be to one to two days. What are we doing to improve the speed with which we're getting products to our customers to keep pace with that trend?
                    Autonomous vehicles. Driverless vehicles and drones. Are machines going to be delivering packages to us in five years? The autonomous vehicle, people are split on that. People think that might be participating in the next five years. 
                    Drones, people are a lot more skeptical on that. Not as many people think that's going to happen. A huge impact. That makes sense because most use cases we've heard are around world delivery and things like that. 
                    Crypto currencies and payment methods. How much of our sites are going to be transacted with bitcoin in five years from now? A little more skeptical, but even if 10% to 20% were paying by bitcoin in five years from now, that would be a thing. Right? A lot of people are much more optimistic on both these forms of payment like Apple Pay, the Firm. Those types of things. Yes, hopefully entering credit card numbers is going to go away.
                    Is fraud going to go up or going to go down? 40% of people think it's going to increase. If fraud's going to increase that maybe 3% to 5% of our business in five years from now, what kind of things should we be doing today to combat that? Do we even know what we should be doing?
                    Okay. This one's kind of hot last year, two years ago. When Oculus Rift was around and Google glasses and things like that. Augmented reality and virtual reality. People are generally more skeptical that this is actually going to play a major role, but maybe for some categories like home furnishings, things like that may be more applicable. We'll see. Yeah. Kind of skeptical. People are still preferring mobile devices it seems like.
                    Big one. Voice controlled surge. Are we going to be ordering things through Alexa through Google. Yeah. People are pretty optimistic that's going to happening, that's going to be a thing. I'm sure Amazon and Google will figure out a way to charge us to play in that field when it comes about. I'm sure that's going to be sometime during the ...
                    3D printing. Okay, this was the most unanimous, people were most skeptical about 3D printing in the home. Not really something that people see happening in five years from now. They think it's just a function of people who have a lot of faith in the quality of that experience right now. But maybe this is more like a 10 year tech. We'll see. On that right-hand side, would you think that people may have some roles. Supply chain 30%. People think it may have some roles, but we'll see.
                    Will robots take our jobs? For most of you here, it's nice to know that management is the furthest one on the right, so our jobs will be taken last, which is nice. 40% people think that robots won't replace our jobs. But the first two that people do think are customer service and warehouse operations. That's not surprising. We're seeing those kind of things with Chat Box happening now. 
                    Will we hand over our credit cards, our money to robots to make transactions for us in five years? Majority of people think that's not going to happen, 68%. But 31% think it's going to happen. Who knows? That could be something. That curve kind of thing might actually come out here soon. 
                    Internet sales tax. How many people think we're going to have internet sales tax in five years. Over half, 55%, think we're going to have internet sales tax. About half think that's going to hurt business. I'm less skeptical that's going to hurt business. I think the convenience of e-commerce are continuing to over weigh the additional cost and we don't have to pay for that. Who has a fun idea about that. We should talk about and this ...
                    How are sharing base models and subscription models going to play out? People are a little bit skeptical like rent the runaway and those kind of models are going to be a big factor in e-commerce in the next five years. Subscription model's a little bit more optimistic if that happened. This could just be the next flash sale sites. Who knows? Or it could actually could be a substantial model if it persists.
                    The big one, we've actually heard of and we want to talk about that today. We did a great presentation on it. Brand selling direct to consumers. This continues to be the big topic and yes, there's a lot of people think that is going to take more and more share of e-commerce in the next five years.
                    Amazon. The next big question. How many people think Amazon's going to ... Slack rate about 44% right now in transactions. What do people think Amazon can do in the next five years? A lot of people think it's going to 50% to 70% of e-commerce sales. That kind of trend continuing as we've heard discussion today. I think Lou's on the right-hand side. Like 100% data. I don't know how they're going to do that. I promise I wasn't going to zero.
                    Actually this is the Google slide. Do we think Google's going to increase and influence or not? Over 50% think it's going to increase. How do those two things co-exist? That's a very interesting question. 
                    Then, finally we got Facebook. What's Facebook's influence going to be like on e-commerce in the future? 
                    Not surprising. More people think it's going to ... They actually made a surprising ... I think people got an emotional reaction to Facebook in seeing that's going to decrease. Will we actually be actually be natively purchasing products on Facebook in five years? Maybe, maybe not. 
                    I think the takeaways for this the most actual stuff for us as retailers. Reducing checkout friction, so looking at payments. Looking at how fast are supply chains. There's lots of companies like Darkstore and Deliv and others that are trying to help us do that.
                    Think about a world where we don't have a website and people are interacting with you through voice. What does that even look like?
                    Then also, can your business be disrupted by any new business models? In particular brands going direct? I know that's something that a lot of us have experience with here.
                    Anyway, that's it. That is my presentation.