To Achieve Growth and Differentiation in 2022, Online Merchants Are Boosting Their Personalization and Localization Efforts, Verifone Survey Insights Reveal

2022 focus points for online businesses will center around the customer experience

ATLANTA, Feb. 10, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Verifone, the FinTech leader providing end-to-end payment and commerce solutions to the world’s best-known brands, announced today survey results identifying 2022 eCommerce trends. Insights are based on a global eCommerce Trends Survey conducted by Verifone with 500 companies across the world. Participants included CEOs, C-level executives, VPs and senior managers from online sellers of physical or digital goods and services, spanning a wide spectrum of industries.

While the past years were all about building the right tech setup and provisioning for business continuity in the context of the new normal, in 2022, online merchants are looking to streamline their growth plans and be more competitive. Having tackled the dual challenge of digital transition and consolidation last year, online sellers, this year, will be focused on strategies to help them stand out in the increasingly competitive digital commerce space and gain an edge by better meeting customer expectations. The main priorities planned for 2022 center around launching new products and enhancing the overall user experience, especially in the context of cross-border expansion objectives. This reinforced focus recenters business priorities around the end client and their needs, marking off a key step required to achieve the true omnichannel approach they’ll need going forward. Here are some additional findings from the survey.

Launching new products will be the main focus for eCommerce in 2022, according to 48 percent of respondents. This points to a significant switch in priorities, as in pre-pandemic times only about a third of merchants were reporting new launches as a priority. Personalization of the customer experience remains a primary objective for almost half of respondents (42 percent), followed by cross-border scaling (40 percent), brand building and awareness (38 percent) and optimization initiatives (31 percent).

Payment method localization has become online merchants’ top challenge, as many of them have intensified cross-border efforts during last year’s lockdowns. 52 percent of respondents will be struggling with localization in 2022, as opposed to 19 percent in 2020. Customer support (27 percent) and fraud and chargebacks (19 percent) have increased in priority as well, for 6 and 4 percent, respectively. Choosing the right technology was found to be a less urgent need versus 2020 (26 percent), as many companies already reinforced their tech stacks during the first year of the pandemic.

Conversion optimization (25 percent), returns and refunds (24 percent), cross-border sales (22 percent) and global compliance (16 percent) were also reported as challenges to be tackled in the year ahead.

A rise in 2022 eCommerce budgets over last year is expected, as 96% of respondents are looking to increase different departments’ funds allocation. Marketing budgets will see the greatest increases as reported by 42 percent of merchants, followed by sales budget increase (30 percent), eCommerce department budget (29 percent) and product budgets (25 percent). Enterprise companies (1,000+ employees) are the only ones focused more on increasing sales budgets as opposed to marketing department budgets.

Regarding who is responsible for eCommerce in a company, marketing departments continue to have ownership on digital commerce operations in 26 percent of cases, followed by sales (22 percent). Compared to previous years, however, dedicated eCommerce teams are a more common occurrence in companies, with 17% of respondents mentioning them, a 6% increase from 2020.

New eCommerce implementations planned for 2022 will mirror online merchants’ top priorities, with deep personalization being the number one roadmap item for the year (46 percent) followed by mobile optimizations and apps (46 percent) and machine learning for customer retention (45 percent).

In terms of eCommerce initiatives already adopted or underway, 27 percent cited existing mobile optimization implementations and 20 percent noted previous personalization efforts, with only 17 percent reporting the use machine learning for customer retention.

Where payment methods are concerned, the majority of merchants already accept debit and credit cards, digital wallets and bank transfers. In 2022, merchants are looking to adopt additional, more consumer-relevant payment methods, such as prepaid cards (32 percent), BNPL (28 percent) and local payment methods (28 percent).

As far as targeted regions for business scaling in 2022, a third of merchants want to grow in North America (30 percent), followed by Europe (21 percent) and the emergent Middle East and Africa (14 percent).

“The digital commerce space has become more competitive, and merchants are looking to 2022 as their year to break through. The reinforced focus on customer experience as a direct lever for growth marks a clearer path toward an omnichannel approach and mirrors what we’re seeing in terms of platform usage. Payment method localization, mobile and conversion optimizations, as well as customer support and fraud protections, are the type of capabilities businesses need to sustain their expansion objectives and help provision them for an even stronger year ahead.” said Jamie Bullard, Verifone Vice President of Software and Services.

For more insights into Verifone’s 2022 eCommerce trends survey, please view the infographic here.

About Verifone

Verifone is a FinTech leader providing valuable end-to-end payment and commerce solutions to the world’s best-known retail brands, major financial institutions, and directly to more than 600,000 merchants. We enable omnichannel commerce, revolutionizing selling for vendors and building personalized, flexible and innovative journeys for shoppers and buyers across the world. With a growing footprint of over 35 million devices in 150+ countries, businesses choose Verifone for its global scale, local capabilities, omnichannel prowess and solution flexibility.

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