5 Global Consumer Trends Shaping the Future of Ecommerce

Explore the 5 major consumer trends and build future marketing strategies.
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Last update:

June 23, 2023
Consumers have formed new shopping behavior following the surge in online sales caused by the global pandemic in 2020. While people snapped up toilet paper, hand sanitizer and face masks in the early days of the outbreak. 

However, more trends show that consumers have shifted to a new normal shopping behavior now. As the way we live, work, and shop continues to change and evolve, these converging trends will grow exponentially and become permanent habits that we will retain.

To help eCommerce sellers better understand future opportunities, ShipSaving has researched some of the current trends that are accelerating and emerging, and found 5 global shifts that will have a big impact on the future. Understanding these trends will help you develop your marketing strategy.

A safer way to shop

Price and convenience have always been top of mind for shoppers. However, the situation is now very different. In the U.S., 71% of respondents now say that safety is the most important factor in their decision about where to shop. The picture is similar across the globe, with only half of shoppers saying they are eager to go back to the supermarket to shop.

People don't stop shopping, they just look for safer ways to shop. New ways of shopping such as "order online, pick-up in store". Most importantly, many of these behavioral changes have the potential to evolve into long-term habits. For example, 40% of global respondents plan to increase the frequency of online shopping, even after the pandemic is over.

The pursuit of physical and mental health

During these special times, people have to adapt to new lifestyles. In order to find inner peace, many people make time for life-enriching activities such as gardening, baking and meditation. In addition to satisfying the desire to "get something done," participating in these activities teaches people that there is always something good worth waiting for, such as hand-grown fruits and vegetables and freshly baked bread.

The increase in downloads of meditation apps, the rise in popularity of live yoga classes, and even the use of the hashtag "#quarantinebaking" are indicative of a shift in behavior toward physical and mental health.


Many people found a genuine appreciation and gratitude for the dedicated people and brands that were helping to ease the plight of their local communities. At a time of social distance, people are turning more to online channels to express their concern for their communities. From February to May 2020, search results for local businesses on Facebook increased by 23 percent, and membership in Facebook local groups increased 3.3 times.

During the same period, the pandemic began to spread across borders, and people realized that they were "global citizens" and no one could be left alone. The #InItTogether hashtag is one way they are expressing this. Right now, people around the world are 1.26 times more concerned about the global pandemic situation than they are about their own country's. People are not just worried, they are also taking action. Many people rallied in solidarity with those suffering, such as the hashtag #AndraTuttoBene (cheer for Italy's battle against the pandemic) in the early days of the pandemic in Italy. 

The "rebirth" of Generation Z

In 2020, 41% of the global population will be under the age of 25. Interestingly, Gen Z is the generation that has been most profoundly transformed in every way since the pandemic. In addition, many Gen Zers are refocusing on causes that are important to them.

Compared to the global average, Gen Z is more likely to see themselves as "keeping up with trends that emerged during the pandemic," such as using online learning platforms and spending more time on recreation.

A warm and convenient way to communicate

At this particular time of the pandemic, it is more important than ever that "isolation is not a barrier". Over the past few months, the way people communicate has changed dramatically. To name a few, parents are visiting online groups for parenting experiences, people are celebrating Ramadan on digital platforms, and commuters around the world are meeting online.

There has also been a shift in the way consumers connect with e-commerce merchants. Half of global respondents said they feel more connected when communicating with merchants via messaging. Data shows that 40% of global shopping season consumers say they are more likely to consider shopping from a merchant they can message.

Written on:

August 10, 2021
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