What can we anticipate e-commerce to seem like all through 2021? There’s nonetheless plenty of uncertainty within the financial system, however some sturdy developments emerged final yr that retailers can construct upon now as customers solidify new habits and preferences.

For instance, half of shoppers who initially deliberate to return to their pre-pandemic in-store purchasing routines as soon as COVID-19 is underneath management now plan to stay with on-line purchasing, per a September 2020 Pymnts report.

That shift in preferences implies that e-commerce retailers should sustain with trending methods to market, promote, and stop fraud. Let’s take a look at a number of of a very powerful developments and see the place they are going.

BOPIS, Curbside Pickup Carry New Challenges

Purchase-online-pickup-in-store (BOPIS) and curbside pickup order quantity grew by greater than 500 p.c from March by means of June 2020.

Fluctuations in BOPIS order quantity appeared to trace with shutdowns and reopenings, however they had been constantly larger than in 2019. Even after shops can absolutely reopen, BOPIS quantity will possible stay larger than pre-pandemic order ranges, as a result of some prospects now choose pickup to in-store purchasing.

Which means omnichannel retailers might want to proceed optimizing their on-line ordering and curbside pickup processes to maintain prospects loyal. Specifically, it is essential for retailers to ensure that the inventory on their app or web site displays the in-store actuality, to keep away from disappointing prospects with lacking objects at pickup.

BOPIS can be weak to card-not-present fraud by criminals who use quite a lot of techniques, together with:

  • Ordering with a card, then canceling the order minutes earlier than efficiently choosing it up, to reap the benefits of the lag so as system updates.
  • Utilizing stolen playing cards to make purchases at a number of shops in a single space throughout a short while.
  • Taking up present buyer accounts to make fraudulent orders which can be exhausting to detect.

Actual-time information updates may help stop post-cancellation pickups. Velocity controls can spot a number of orders at completely different shops on the identical card. Batch evaluation can flag a number of orders on completely different playing cards that each one have the identical financial institution identification quantity (BIN), a sign of attainable BIN fraud. Guide evaluate of flagged orders and additional screening for high-ticket or high-risk orders (electronics, toddler diapers and method) can cut back retailers’ fraud threat.

Social Commerce ‘Skeleton Keys’

Like BOPIS, social purchasing acquired a lift from the shift to e-commerce, and from the additional time many people now spend on social media. Analysts now undertaking that the worldwide worth of social commerce will develop by 31 p.c year-over-year to succeed in $604 billion by 2027. The social gross sales channel is especially properly suited to attire, electronics, magnificence and residential dcor objects, based on eMarketer analysis.

Shopping for a product or subscription immediately from a social put up or stream is simple, which is sweet information for patrons, but in addition for fraudsters. That is as a result of social media accounts are a primary goal for organized criminals. As a result of so many individuals reuse passwords on a number of accounts, a knowledge publicity on one account usually provides fraudsters a “skeleton key” to different accounts utilizing the identical credentials.

That is one of many causes account-takeover (ATO) fraud jumped by greater than 280 p.c final yr. As soon as they’ve damaged right into a social media account, thieves can use the fee strategies on file and the duvet offered by a recognized buyer to make purchases as simply as tapping a shoppable put up.

To forestall purchases from taken-over accounts, retailers who use social commerce want filters in place that consider person habits and examine it to their habits throughout previous periods. For instance, a social media person who has at all times centered on discounted pet provides is unlikely to all of a sudden shift gears and make a high-ticket-value electronics buy.

By flagging behavioral “mismatches” for handbook evaluate, retailers can cut back ATO fraud whereas nonetheless catering to good prospects who do store outdoors their regular sample sometimes.

Matching Messaging and Companies to the Second

Final yr was the yr of the pivot when it got here to messaging, gives and merchandise to advertise. Early within the yr, customers had been centered on cleansing and security merchandise and family staples like canned meals and baking provides.

Because the yr wore on, altering client priorities drove a collection of purchasing developments for merchandise like house health tools, wading swimming pools, house home equipment and residential workplace tools, as the fact of prolonged time at house sank in.

After practically a yr of those fast modifications in demand, prospects anticipate retailers to grasp and ship what they want in actual time. To this point this yr, shoppers’ focus continues to be on the house, however with the potential of some normalcy by the autumn of this yr, retailers, journey firms and different e-commerce retailers ought to look ahead to indicators that customers are planning for the return to high school campuses, theaters, trip spots and different public locations.

When that occurs, retailers might want to pivot once more to fulfill the second by way of messaging and promotions — and so they might have to regulate their fraud filters to accommodate new shopping for developments.

A method to assist prospects resolve a standard downside proper now could be by implementing order monitoring instruments.

As extra of us shopped on-line in 2020, package deal deliveries elevated and so did package deal thefts. C+R Analysis’s 2020 Bundle Theft Statistics Report discovered that 49 p.c of Individuals had a package deal delivered at the least weekly final yr and 10 p.c acquired packages every day. Amongst all of the respondents, 43 p.c had a package deal stolen in 2020, with a mean worth of $136.

Due to the chance of package deal thefts, many individuals attempt to be at house once they know a package deal might be delivered. That is one thing retailers may help with. By including real-time order monitoring performance to their web site and app — and together with it so as replace emails — retailers can present prospects precisely when their purchases will arrive to allow them to restrict theft threat with out devoting hours to ready for deliveries.

Order monitoring is a comparatively easy approach to enhance the shopper expertise. It may well additionally assist retailers fight pleasant fraud by verifying that orders had been delivered.

Put Personalization Knowledge to Use

One other approach to make sure that retailers are providing what prospects need is by utilizing AI to enhance personalization. By understanding what particular person customers are searching for and what they purchase, retailers can higher upsell and cross-sell by providing merchandise which can be a very good match for these customers’ pursuits, tastes and budgets.

That sense of understanding can improve buyer loyalty and lifelong worth as properly — 91 p.c of shoppers say they’re extra prone to store with manufacturers that make customized suggestions and gives, per Accenture analysis.

When retailers unify their buyer personalization and fraud prevention information, their techniques get smarter at recognizing good prospects, to keep away from declining their orders by mistake. That is important as a result of all the cash that goes into personalization and different advertising is wasted if misaligned fraud filters flip down an order from a buyer who feels recognized by the service provider.

Thirty-nine p.c of the time, these customers won’t ever return, based on Sapio Analysis survey information collected for ClearSale. However with unified buyer information, the AI that powers fraud management is at all times getting higher at figuring out prospects, so it is much less prone to flag their good orders. Backed up with handbook evaluate to forestall false declines, this information is extraordinarily priceless for income and buyer retention.

E-Commerce Fraud Prevention in 2021 and Past

Retailers who sustain with new gross sales channels, client wants within the second and altering buyer habits can keep aggressive in 2021, so long as in addition they regulate their fraud applications to replicate the brand new techniques that fraudsters use in several e-commerce channels and keep away from turning down good prospects.

Doing all of this stuff is a problem, but it surely’s doable with unified, real-time information and AI-driven fraud prevention supported by professional evaluate in order that the system retains getting smarter and delivering a greater expertise.



David Fletcher serves as senior vice chairman at ClearSale, a card-not-present fraud prevention operation, the place he spearheads enterprise improvement, gross sales, partnerships and alliances with high e-commerce organizations. As a serial entrepreneur, David understands the actual ache factors that have an effect on enterprise house owners right this moment, and the way fraud administration can present real-world options to these issues.

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