A new study from Juniper Research (www.juniperresearch.com) forecasts that users of digital commerce services will reach three billion by 2021, or 40% of the global population, up from just 32% this year.
The new research found that two core sectors will dominate the global digital commerce industry, in terms of transaction values: Remote payments for digital & physical goods, and digital banking via bill payment services.
These segments together will account for over half of global transaction values by 2021, according to Juniper. Significant opportunity for businesses exists, with remote payments for digital and physical goods forecast to account for over 10% of the $20 trillion global retail market in 2017, notes the research group.
Juniper’s study found that businesses will gain advantage through use of automated customer experiences. With product search and discovery a key stage in the shopper journey, merchants must adopt conversational interfaces to drive customer engagement and, ultimately, sales. Juniper found that by 2021 the surge in chatbot use will result in positive gains throughout the digital commerce market.
“Juniper has found that chatbots and natural language search can greatly improve retailer understanding of consumer behavior, so we are witnessing growth in this sector, for example investment by Facebook and Google, as well as the launch of digital assistants by companies such as Amazon,” Research author Lauren Foye explained.
In addition, the research discovered that digital banking will increasingly envelop a greater proportion of the global population, with adoption approaching one-in-two adults by 2021. Juniper found that usage will continue to rise as consumers increasingly opt for banks offering the convenience of rapid, multi-channel digital services. This means that providers will need to focus on presenting ever more frictionless digital experiences to their customers, especially if they are to remain market leaders.