Three big commerce trends in 2022 every marketer needs to know

10 March 2022 | By Mark Grennan and Stephanie Lowther – Sr. Agency Development Managers, and Zach Weinberg – VP of e-commerce Reprise

Online retail has changed radically from the early days of simply enabling and optimising digital transactions, according to Reprise Commerce. The focus was on the last step of the customer journey – the conversion. We are now witnessing modern-day digitally influenced sales acceleration requiring brands to enable an optimal digital experience regardless of the consumer touchpoint.

First, media owners are embedding more and more commerce experiences into their media. As the opportunities to buy products have expanded across the journey, media has almost become the primary store. As an example, media outlets such as Instagram and TikTok have partnerships in place allowing brands to monetise their media directly within the social feeds of these platforms.

Second, stores like Amazon are no longer just focused on the transaction only. They are evolving into rich, immersive brand-enablement hubs. In part they deliver content, experiences, products and services.

These trends force us to look at the shopping landscape differently. It’s no longer about the last mile. It’s about creating relevant touchpoints along the customer journey through their shopping experience. That’s what we call flow.

Reprise Commerce is built and led in-part by Amazon alumni and organised around Reprise’s process for accelerating customer flow. Its global team of 250 digital commerce specialists drives revenue by improving three key pillars to drive performance: experience, media and content.

According to Reprise Commerce, below are three trends they believe every marketer needs to know in 2022 and beyond to bridge the gap between what customers expect in the future and how brands can deliver.

1. The new consumer journey and customer flow

The modern consumer journey is continuous and may sometimes include friction points – for example, irrelevant content, outdated pages served in search results and slow website performance across multiple screens. It’s imperative to remove that friction from the journey.

To achieve this, Reprise recommends focusing on three main pillars: content, media and experience. Brands should analyse each pillar in a deliberate and phased approach to identify the areas of friction. Then activate plans to remove friction and increase customer flow, which is vital to business success. This is made possible with a well-defined process and operating system coupled with the right insights and action plan.

“Amazon has a holistic approach when it comes to working with vendors and sellers. This is evident with their self-service products including Vendor Central and Seller Central from a retail and operations standpoint, and Amazon Ads suite from a media capability standpoint. We love this because it works in lock step with our customer flow model. This coalescence allows our folks to get access to metrics they need to inform clients on how to better plan, execute and optimise their business in Amazon’s store and elsewhere.”

– Glen Conybeare, Global President, Reprise Commerce

2. Working toward operational excellence

To be successful in digital commerce, brands must accept that operations are just as critical to customer experience (including supply chain/logistics, fulfilment, forecasting, profitability and more) as branding, marketing and promotion. Amazon is underpinned by deep operational expertise and Amazon Ads enables brands to advertise efficiently at scale.

A key suggestion is to expand the scope of support that an agency provides to clients by developing a retail and operations practice. Next, agencies can consider taking advantage of learning the console certifications that Amazon Ads provides to help them better understand how clients can achieve operational excellence. Last, agency partners may wish to invest in building a team of retail and operations experts that work with clients to close the loop on marketing, sales and fulfilment to prevent loss of sales and profit due to charge-backs or other operational errors.

“Amazon is constantly innovating how a retailer can support a partner brand. This is evident with the sharing of new approaches, signals and tools. Amazon Ads typically represents a huge share of budget and hands-on-keyboard support clients come to us for. However, there’s an entire other side of agency support, which is retail, operations and commerce strategy. We believe Reprise is leading the charge in this practice and our partners at Amazon are providing the tools and support to maximize clients’ businesses and achieve operations excellence.”

– Will Margaritis, SVP Head of e-commerce, Reprise Commerce

3. Leveraging Amazon Ads solutions

Reprise has strategically invested in talent and resources like Amazon Ads’ e-commerce Acceleration Programme, to be positioned the right way in the rapidly changing commerce space. This forward-looking approach, in close collaboration with Amazon Ads, has allowed Reprise clients to utilise product releases within the Amazon Ads console, such as Amazon Marketing Cloud, Amazon DSP and Amazon Attribution among others. To help them stand out in retail, brands can examine how these innovations can increase their paid and organic performance with existing customers and reach new ones on Amazon and other sales channels.

“Amazon continues to improve upon and enhance their marketing innovations. Over the past several years, we’ve seen a huge increase in brand marketer interest in what Amazon has been developing. The constant stream of new products, new solutions and new insights cements Amazon as a great choice for brands looking to invest incremental media budget.”

– Jonathan Rigby, Chief Strategy Officer, Reprise Commerce