New Survey Reveals 2021 Trends in Digital Engagement and eCommerce


“Emerging trends: the forces shaping the future today” is a new consumer survey commissioned by Facebook. 

The survey, carried out via global market research company Ipsos, asked over 12,000 people ages 18-65 about their leading digital engagements and e-commerce behaviors in 2021. 

If you’ve been wondering what’s going on inside your customers’ heads recently, and if your marketing strategies are still relevant, here’s what’s up, and how your small business can benefit.

Time management is top for consumers

2021 trends survey

Facebook’s survey reveals that people are taking increased ownership of their time. Consumers want to achieve more in less time.  No wonder they prioritize technology and products that are efficient and integrate well with other services.  

86% of people are actively looking for ways to make their life more simple and convenient. 72% of them are willing to pay for it.

Top on people’s reasons for time-management are family time (65%), exercise (62%), and traveling (59%).

💡 Whatever is a priority for customers, should be a priority for businesses. If you’re an entrepreneur, now is a good time to ask yourself how you can a) fulfill this consumer need with your product or service b) get the word about it out there. In other words, how your customers will know about your efforts to fulfill their time-management needs.

Consumers want a shopping experience that’s closer to friendship than business

 ecommerce 2021 trends survey

Amazon will always have its place, but it’s no longer the Alpha and Omega of online shopping. More and more consumers are turning to niche products and brands for a more personalized shopping experience. And they’re finding their next favorite brand on social media.

Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook pages engage a growing number of customers. More than that, they allow consumers to actively participate in their social life, forging relationships that resemble digital friendships more than business interactions. And that’s a win-win for everyone.

56% of respondents said social media allowed them to deepen their relationship with brands. Another 43% said they’re looking forward to exploring more interactive shopping options in the future (e.g. Live Shopping and Augmented Reality).

💡 As a small business, think of ways you can make your shopping experience more interactive, up close, and personal through social media. Think of your brand pages as a medium for conversation and friendship more than sales and marketing.

Online communities are the place to network, support, and do business

In the era of global lockdowns, the online world has become our resource and support hub for online networking and support. But today, online entrepreneur communities like these are moving away from the realm of optional support groups to ultimate power communities. 

60% of respondents are part of an online community and 65% have nothing against brands being part of their online communities. 

💡 For small businesses, especially ones that have social media growth as part of their strategy, discretion and being helpful is still the top requirement for brands in the online community space. Don’t mistake online communities for brand social media pages. What is appropriate for one space isn’t appropriate for another.

People want to support and partner with local business

2021 trends survey

Small business, especially local small business has just gone through one ordeal of a year in 2020. Your consumers know that. And your partners know that too. The good news is, both want to help.

97% of respondents are actively supporting local business. 24% of those people are entrepreneurs themselves. 

💡 Finding new partnerships and supporting each other’s back can be not only a good way to survive COVID, but grow your business in unexpected ways. Many entrepreneurs “lucky” enough to have business in times of COVID success stories were precisely the ones that extended a hand to complementary businesses and formed partnerships that will long outlast the pandemic. 

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