Holiday Shopping: 2021 Trends and Opportunities

Holiday Shopping: 2021 Trends and Opportunities

With 2020 came a significant migration from exclusively brick-and-mortar retail to a hybrid model with inventory available for purchase online. The 2021 holiday sales season will require businesses to continue their online migration from 2020 trends, with opportunities for more refinement and improvements. The key to a successful holiday sales season? Bring as much inventory as possible online and integrate all of your customer touch points into an omnichannel of positive experiences.

Let’s take a look at some trends in retail that can strengthen your business and position you well for the new year.

Strong E-Commerce Presence

As shoppers increased online purchasing and delivery last year, the trend is expected to continue beyond the pandemic. For this reason, all businesses should strengthen their online presence, especially their e-commerce presence.

Many retail establishments benefit from a complete ecommerce solution, including a storefront, shopping cart, online payment process, and automated fulfillment. They can expand their online effectiveness with these features:

  • Enable chat features between customers and store clerks to simulate the conversations customers would experience by shopping in the physical store.
  • For clothing, post detailed sizing charts, imitate the dressing room mirror with try-on automation, and use size-inclusive photography featuring models of different body types.
  • Create how-to videos that show customers ways to effectively use the product.
  • Expand photography so customers can see all angles of the product as well as how it can be used.
  • Display and sort user reviews to help customers make the best purchase decision for them.
  • Implement clear navigation and search options so customers can find what they want.
  • Consider a ‘buy online, pick up in store’ policy. Today, many customers research online, then visit the physical location to finalize their transaction.

Expanding your business’s e-commerce presence doesn’t just apply to retail. For example, businesses in the services space have implemented appointment-setting and payment processing. Real estate agents have enhanced virtual home tours. Many businesses with physical goods and documents have beefed up delivery options and implemented curbside pickup.

Each business has a unique sales cycle that a customer goes through when purchasing goods and services. The question for business owners to ask is how they can bring most of that experience online.


The vast majority of transactions are now occurring on mobile devices. If your business’s mobile presence is not optimal, then you’ll want to make that a priority this year to catch up with your competitors.


More and more consumers are using social media channels – Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, Snapchat, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Twitter, Clubhouse, and Facebook — to discover and purchase items that delight them. Wise business owners will invest more budget into attracting customers from this channel.

Holiday Seasons

With the move to online shopping, the holiday season has been extended from just one day or one weekend to entire months. Consumers are shopping earlier and all year long. Retailers and other businesses can benefit by always having some kind of sale or attraction going on. 

How does your business fare when it comes to a fully online experience? Use these trends to boost sales growth in 2021 and beyond.