The Future of E-commerce and IoT: 8 Things You Should Know



The internet of things (IoT) is the future of e-commerce.

But don’t think of IoT as something that only pertains to the future of e-commerce because it’s happening now.

A 2016 National Telecommunications and Information Administration report revealed that the number of Americans using IoT remained small.

However, more Americans realize that IoT is going to be the way that people and businesses across the world connect so they’re already trying it. 

Eventually, IoT will be the way of the world. It’s time to secure your company’s place in the world. There are eight essentials to know about the future of e-commerce and IoT.

First things first: learn what IoT means.


The Internet of Things Is the Thing

Any device that can be turned on or off and features WiFi capability can be connected to the internet.

That creates an internet of things, known as IoT.

The devices include

  • cell phones

  • laptops

  • televisions

  • heating/air units

  • coffee makers

  • refrigerators

  • security systems

  • engines

  • machine parts

  • and much, much more.

Research shows that by 2020, 26 billion devices will be connected across the planet.

Here are the eight essentials to keep in mind about the future of e-commerce and IoT.


1. There’s an Increase in Mobile Usage and Shopping

Research says that 95% of Americans own cell phones

That equates to most Americans carrying mini stores in their pockets, purses, and hands. Worldwide cell phone use is also high.

A phone represents a portable version of your retail store or e-commerce site. 

Your website and other marketing must look good and function well on a small screen because mobile marketing is going to continue being the norm. 


2. The Cost of Broadband Continues to Lower

Being online has never been more affordable.

But trends show that it will become even more affordable.

Society and the market want people to connect via the IoT. The convenience and ease of use are undeniable.

Businesses must conform to business being conducted in this manner because now, just about everyone can afford it. 


3. More Devices Use WiFi 

All products are being primed to connect. Whatever you can think of, from lawnmowers to cars.

These devices inform retailers when a malfunction occurs or a replacement is needed. 

Devices tell us what they need when they need it. They remind us to purchase upgrades and replacements. 

This provides a whole new way to market and sell.


4. People and Things Connect Globally

Going away on vacation or working long hours is easier with IoT. People can set and check security alarms from wherever in the world they go.

They can adjust the temperature for pets if the weather turns cold.

This cross global ease increases productivity, security, and even adds to the economy because it broadens work opportunities.

People want to connect this way so businesses must offer this type of connection.


5. IoT Means Finally Living Like Star Trek’s Real

Don’t laugh. A lot of us have been waiting for this.

In all seriousness, the futuristic elements of IoT inspire people to participate for the sheer joy of it.

For example, who doesn’t want to be helped by a robot?

Well, robots do feature into IoT when it comes to delivering products to homes as well as helping shoppers in stores, restaurants, and hotels.

And machines we use every day will be better able to serve consumers in a highly personalized way. 

Any company that fails to provide such ease won’t be in business for long.

Consider MPOS. It stands for mobile point of sale.

MPOS allows customers to pay via mobile point of sale units anywhere in a store. 87% of retailers plan to provide MPOS units by 2021.

We don’t know what’s wrong with the other 13%.

As a retailer, it’s time to realize that what happens in the store is also happening in your office. 


6. IoT Creates Profit

The connectivity of IoT gives retailers a big advantage. 

For one, it allows them to target customers on site. 

Digital signage reveals real-time price changes and ads in retail spaces.

Ads can be targeted to smartphones when shoppers enter a store. This happens thanks to a device called a beacon.

Shoppers can even use a smart mirror to try on clothes virtually which is so cool.

Smart mirrors enhance sales because they make trying on clothes quick and painless. They also 

  • save time for customers and clerks

  • save money on damaged merchandise

  • reduce losses from shoplifting

  • save space which improves store flow 

  • save space which saves money on construction costs.

The only thing that could make this better is if retailers beamed in coffee!


7. IoT Streamlines Inventory

Inventory used to be such a headache, but IoT is the most powerful aspirin of all.

It monitors the packing and tracking of products in real time.

This helps e-commerce businesses know when deliveries are slow.

This keeps customers happy and also saves time for employees. Time is money has never been truer.

The more a business can stay on top of inventory, the less catch-up it needs to do. Customers will appreciate receiving real-time info about deliveries.

That appreciation creates customer loyalty and more profits.

IoT also improves 

  • the delivery of warranty info 

  • reports of poorly functioning products

  • marketing capabilities.

When everything’s connected, the wealth of information moves fast. It also flows freely. It’s time for your company to take part in the future of e-commerce.


8. Storage Will Play a Big Role in IoT and Future of E-commerce

Marketplace Valet makes space for your e-commerce and IoT needs.

We’re a 3PL that thinks like an e-commerce company. We offer:

  • low pack and pick fees

  • Low-cost warehousing

  • multi channel order fulfillment

  • negotiated shipping rates

and more.

Even better, we provide a dedicated account manager. Having one person who knows the ins and outs of your business matters.

There’s no need to explain everything over and over, time and again. We make sure someone knows you when you call us.


Contact Market Place Valet Today

We’re ready to give you access to top-selling worldwide marketplaces. 

Our Founders have generated over $75,000,000 in e-commerce revenue.

Let’s beam up together into the future of e-commerce. Contact us today.

What The Future of E-commerce Looks Like: 8 Things You Can Expect

future of e-commerce


As innovative as the technology it operates on, e-commerce is always taking a new shape. E-commerce’s constant progression isn’t going to be changing anytime soon.

Staying aware of current trends can be overwhelming, even frustrating for some. Yet, you must stay up-to-date in the online marketplace to remain competitive. 

Read below to learn more on the future of e-commerce in 2017.


1. Become More Customer-Centric 

Did you know that of 3/4 of customers abandon their shopping carts? 39% will leave due to confusing and long check-out periods. 

New players are constantly joining the online marketplace, increasing competition. This means that companies must become more customer-centric to retain loyalty. 

It is important to not skimp on the basic stuff, like improving slow load times and check-out periods. However, just focusing on that isn’t enough.

You must remain proactive in this industry to be successful. It is important to continually find ways to improve your customer’s experience. That is what sets you apart from the competition.

Go beyond offering free and minimal shipping and return fees. Think of how you can customize and simplify your buyer’s experience.

The bottom line is customers have much higher expectations. Surpassing these expectations will guarantee your place in the future of e-commerce. 


2. Visual Search 

Still a relatively new concept, visual search will continue to develop in 2017. Visual search allows customers to search for products by image instead of text.

Search engines will be able to detect color, size, shape, brand, etc. to help locate a product. The benefits to customers are immense- this simplifies their process greatly. 

For one, visual search doesn’t require you to be shopping in a store. Buyers can look up most items, whether it’s a friends new shirt or the office’s new coffee maker.

Also, it cuts back on impulse buying. Users will be less likely to stumble on other items aside from their original purchase.

Pinterest now even offers visual discovery tools to browsers. We will see more and more companies take advantage of these search capabilities.


3. Multi-dimensional Personalization 

We all already know of personalization, and its use to e-commerce.

Personalizing is tricky if you are only pulling information from one source. This is a very limited and narrow breach of your buyer’s shopping preferences.

This is a very limited and narrow breach of your buyer’s shopping preferences.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is creating software that pulls this information from various sources.

“By using multiple data sources, both for the user and the product catalog, we detect every pattern and signal that will determine what the user would like to purchase, the spending potential of the user, the colors and patterns he or she gets attracted to, and many other attributes,” says Akash Bhatia, co-founder and CEO of Infinite Analytics. 

These algorithms will expand on collaborative filtering, which many retailers already use. 


4. Virtual and Augmented Reality

Many know virtual and augmented reality as a channel for video games. However, it’s tech capabilities are something we will see in the future of e-commerce. These shoppers struggle with deciding if the product(s) are for them.

50% of online customers have abandoned carts because they weren’t ready to purchase.

This is where virtual and augmented reality will come into play. Retailers can implement software to help shoppers envision themselves with the product. 

IKEA’s catalog app is an example of a retailer’s success with augmented reality.

Customers take a picture of the room and select the product they want to buy. They are then able to view how the item will look within their home.

Other household brands have followed. Sephora lets users apply make-up to their picture through an app. Google’s platform, Tango, follows a similar model to IKEA.


5. Social Media Will Aid in Future of E-Commerce

Retailers have placed heavy emphasis on their social media accounts for branding purposes. Yet, social media is also becoming a large driver in actual sales.

You may notice more ‘Sponsored Posts’ when scrolling through your Twitter and Instagram feed. That is because retailers are taking advantage of promotional opportunities social platforms offer.

Companies are now also using their social accounts for a more conversational approach. This is a technique that will carry into the future of e-commerce as well.

Social media allows companies and users to establish a more personal connection. This opportunity can convert prospects to customers through sharing and direct conversation.


6. Purchase and Pick Up

It’s not the time to completely abandon brick-and-mortar stores. Nearly 1/3 of shoppers prefer purchasing online and picking up in-store.

This will shape the future of e-commerce for many reasons. 

Retailers that exist solely online may consider opening a physical location. “We expect further partnerships to be made in order to allow Internet-based retailers to build up physical collection points,” according to Criteo.

Also, retailers in non-competing fields will explore more collaborative efforts. An example of this would be a beauty line that exists only online placing its products in a hair salon.

The hair salon may not be the face of the company but they are able to charge fees to the seller. This allows the online marketplace to present a physical location for customers.


7.  Increase in Third Party Services

Third party logistics are going to be more prevalent than ever in the future of e-commerce. 

From 2007 to 2016, third party companies doubled the sales they facilitate. We can thank Amazon largely for the 26% to 50% increase.

However, many other companies have been experiencing the same success. 91% of people who use a third party service have a positive relationship with their provider. 

More and more e-commerce sites are emerging, in hopes of finding a part of this growing success. 


8. Added FBA Service 

If you are an Amazon seller, you are probably familiar with its Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) program.

Sellers can send their products to an Amazon facility. Amazon will handle shipping and packaging.

There are some stipulations to this service. The primary concern is that smaller, inexpensive items were not eligible to take part.

However, in 2015, Amazon added the ‘Small and Light’ program to its service line. This handles those smaller, lightweight products that didn’t qualify before.

We predict an increase in retailers shipping less conventional items to its customers.

The world of e-commerce is everchanging. Marketplace Valet is here to assist with all your online marketplace needs. From product setup and inventory management to brand protection and customer service, we have you covered. Contact us today to speak to an online representative!