Top Five Digital Consumer Trends in 2024

January 2024

Technological advances in 2024 will continue to reshape consumer behaviour. This annual report explores the top five digital shopper trends that will redefine commerce the most in the year ahead. Some of the trends included in this report’s edition touch on topics such as generative AI, recommerce, online budget hacks, the popular social network TikTok and product returns.

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This report comes in PPT.

Key findings

Trend no. 1: Intuitive E-Commerce

The rising influence of digital channels among consumers is putting pressure on companies to improve the online experience. This is becoming possible due to evolving data-gathering strategies and emerging technologies, from AR to IoT to Gen AI. These advances have the potential to transform the online shopping experience, leading to one that is more intuitive.

Trend no. 2: TikTok Economy

Digital consumers are flocking to TikTok and Douyin, twin social media platforms that have embraced short-form video content. Brands are striving to promote their products and services on these platforms, but some of the viral trends that are doing the most to boost brand sales are emerging organically from users on those platforms, without any direct brand involvement.

Trend no. 3: Outsmart Online

Against a backdrop of mounting macroeconomic uncertainty and increasing digitalisation, consumers are increasingly seeking out online platforms dedicated to rooting out the best deals. However, more and more consumers are utilising these platforms in ways that brands do not intend – and, increasingly, in ways that brands disapprove of outright. 

Trend no. 4: Recommerce 2.0

Recommerce is surging and evolving globally, driven by environmentally conscious, thrifty and tech-savvy younger consumers. Brands and retailers recognise the potential of the market and are actively adopting various strategies to enter it, mirroring the convenience of e-commerce, and making recommerce more widely accessible across geographies and product categories.

Trend no. 5: Revamped Returns

Consumers have long wanted hassle-free returns, but delivering on that expectation has not been without challenges. The convergence of trends like the rise of e-commerce, the closure of stores and more sustainable strategies is moving returns up the industry agenda. New technologies and partnerships are paving the way to a revamped return experience.

Key findings
A snapshot of the global digital consumer in 2024
The five digital shopper trends that will redefine commerce the most in 2024
E-commerce growth is leading online shoppers to expect more of the experience
Personalisation is increasingly being viewed as an important shopping feature
Most digitally savvy increasingly desire a more intuitive online shopping experience
Evolving data rules are making it harder to obtain consumer data needed for personalisation
Gen AI enables brands to leverage first party data at scale to create next-gen experience
Case study: Alibaba uses generative AI to optimise the Tmall shopping experience
Case study: Naver’s AI tools provide shoppers with recommendations while they shop
Case study: Expedia adds AI capabilities to make travel planning more straightforward
Case study: Zalando adds fashion assistant to enable consumers to shop by occasions
Case study: Wayfair introduced a virtual room styler powered by generative AI
New technologies like generative AI could usher in a more intuitive shopping experience
What to expect in 2024 and beyond
Consumers are flocking to twin social media platforms TikTok and Douyin
TikTok and Douyin’s combined active monthly user base approaches 2 billion people
Consumers are joining TikTok and Douyin even as they abandon other social media platforms
Organic viral video content on ByteDance platforms can power sales of products and services
Brands try to capitalise on TikTok’s popularity by engineering viral video content of their own
Douyin and TikTok are seeking to capitalise on popularity of platforms
Case study: A viral TikTok trend powers fast food giant McDonald’s US sales
Case study: A TikTok craze creates a black market for Betty Crocker Fruit Roll-Ups in Israel
Case study: The TikTok-powered “tinned fish” trend has serious staying power
Case study: Hai Di Lao Hot Pot uses Douyin to manufacture its own viral video trend
The TikTok economy looks set to become a significant factor in brands’ success
What to expect in 2024 and beyond
Digital consumers are turning to online platforms to uncover “budget hacks” to save money
High inflation and other economic concerns are weighing on consumers’ minds
Economic anxiety and digitalisation are simultaneously impacting consumer behaviour
TikTok and other social media platforms are helping to popularise budget hacks
Some brands are opting to fight back against budget hacks, but others are embracing them
Case study: ShopBack app partners with brands looking to tout the savings they offer
Case study: Temu explodes onto the scene with its value-focused, third-party marketplace
Case study: American Airlines fights back against a skiplagging budget hack site
Case study: The success of CRZ Yoga shows how “dupe culture” can benefit upstart brands
Brands will have some tough decisions to make as budget hacks become more prevalent
What to expect in 2024 and beyond
Recommerce is becoming more accessible, leading to category expansion
Recognising consumer interest, businesses are poised to invest in circularity
Younger generations are driven to resale as they prioritise value and sustainability
Buying second-hand items becomes more accepted, shedding any remaining stigma
Businesses adopt recommerce, providing convenience and diversifying product categories
Brands and retailers employ various strategies to enter resell market
Case study: Xianyu is more than a second-hand platform, it also creates a community
Case study: Vinted expands to new categories and creates community
Case study: Lindex offers verified second-hand childrenswear via circular marketplace Tradera
Case study: LVMH introduces Nona Source, the first online resale platform for materials
Case study: Taitonetti gains momentum due to sustainable approach and the chip shortage
Case study: provides recommerce service for Decathlon in Germany
Recommerce is set to grow with business opportunities, legislation, and consumer demand
What to expect in 2024 and beyond
Improving upon the return experience moves to the top of the agenda
Almost half of global digital consumers desire free returns
The definition of what is a hassle-free return experience varies by consumer cohort
Reducing return rates starts with improving the shopping experience
Retailers are deploying a variety of strategies to solve for rising product returns
Case study: Loop Returns offer outsourced return/exchange service for brands and retailers
Case study: Apparel specialist About You prioritises offering convenience with returns
Case study: Happy Returns helps retailers to provide a more seamless return experience
Case study: Best Buy is opening new stores aimed at recovering financial loss from returns
Case study: Gunner Kennels teams up with Shopify, integrating AR in apps to cut return rates
What to expect in 2024 and beyond
Three key themes emerge from the 2024 trends
How these digital shopper trends will change commerce in 2024
Webinar 2024 consumer trends to watch: lifestyle and digital shifts
About Euromonitor International’s Syndicated Channels Research


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