Starting your own online business is a thrilling and exciting journey that can change your life forever. However, a common obstacle beginner ecommerce entrepreneurs face is choosing the right products to sell in their online stores. This is a crucial business decision that will have a huge impact on your business’s success. However, with millions of available options out there, how does a beginner in the ecommerce space choose what trending products to sell?
If you’re thinking of shifting your customer focus to people in the US, you’re in the right place. As the largest consumer market in the world, the US clocks in at $20 trillion in GDP with 325 million people, according to Select USA, a business investment group. In fact, due to the coronavirus pandemic of 2020, Digital Commerce 360 reports that consumer spending online through September of year was at $546.62 billion online, up 32.6% from $412.32 billion for the same period the year before. Holiday figures from CNBC totaled in at $188.2 billion, over 30% more than in 2019.
What does this all mean for you? Well, you’re in the right market if you’re eyeing an online store as a new stream of revenue for you. And you’re targeting the right country with the US in mind, as consumer spending power is one of the top in the world. While our Sellvia subscription is a great way to nab sure-to-tell (and tried-and-tested) products across various high-traffic categories, there’s always research you can do on your own without our help to determine high-profit niches, trending products to sell, and fun ecommerce trends to be on top of. So, let’s dive into how to find the most trending products online in the US.
The impact of COVID-19 and customers’ shift to online shopping
In early 2020, the world was taken aback by the rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. A virus unknown to us just a few months prior was now transforming the way we live, work, and interact, causing a domino effect across various industries. Among the sectors that underwent an abrupt transformation was retail, with ecommerce emerging as the surprising beneficiary amidst the turmoil.
At the height of the pandemic, as nations around the globe enforced lockdowns and social distancing measures, traditional brick-and-mortar shopping was no longer a safe or viable option for many consumers. This dire circumstance accelerated the migration towards online shopping, not just for essential commodities like groceries and medicine, but also for discretionary items such as electronics, clothing, and home decor. The public health crisis inadvertently drove an upsurge in ecommerce activity, carving a new norm in consumer behavior.
Fast forward to the present day in 2023, restrictions have eased in many regions, and life is gradually returning to a semblance of the pre-pandemic era. However, the surge in online shopping has shown no signs of waning.
This enduring shift can be attributed to a multitude of factors. The convenience of browsing an endless array of products from the comfort of one’s home, the safety it affords by avoiding crowded retail spaces, and the expansive product choices that online platforms offer have all contributed to solidifying online shopping as a preferred mode of purchasing for many consumers.
Indeed, this trend transcends geographical boundaries and product categories, providing a golden opportunity for aspiring ecommerce entrepreneurs. This change in consumer behavior is particularly significant for those seeking to identify and capitalize on trending products to feature in their online stores. A thriving digital marketplace buoyed by the shift to online shopping can present an array of opportunities, but it also demands a keen understanding of consumer preferences and current market trends.
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing consumer shift to online shopping have undeniably altered the retail landscape. Now more than ever, it’s crucial for ecommerce entrepreneurs to stay on top of these trends and adapt their business strategies accordingly. By keeping a close eye on product trends, understanding the driving factors behind them, and leveraging this knowledge to make informed product selections, online store owners can position themselves for success in the burgeoning digital marketplace.
Conducting research to find trending products to sell
You can get caught up in the search for the right products rather easily, however, you can take a totally different approach. What you should do is focus on your personal interests and reflect on them. In the long haul, this will make doing business easier and much more enjoyable.
Maybe you just love to work out and know a lot about fitness, or clothing, or gadgets. Whatever it might be, it’s a great place to start!
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Nevertheless, you shouldn’t totally ignore market research, as it plays a great role in establishing what products have potential and can win over the market.
When you have some sort of idea of the niche you’re going to focus on, the first thing you should do is research the market.
Start by browsing online marketplaces such as eBay, Amazon and AliExpress to see what products are trending in your niche. You can even find separate categories of best sellers to help you hone in on popular products or markets.
Additionally, conduct keyword research to find out what products have the potential to hit the trending market.
Another way to find trending products is to use Google Trends. It is a free tool that shows you how frequently words or terms have been searched for in a specified time period. This can provide you with an idea of whether the product is trending or is losing popularity.
Even so, there are a few other things you need to consider when choosing a product to sell.
Guidelines to find trending products to sell
Now, you need to run these ideas through and answer some basic questions to have an even better idea of the potential trending product.
Does it solve a problem
The number one question to ask when you’re choosing a product – what problem does it solve?
While trends may come and go, problems are much more permanent. That’s why choosing practical problem-solving products to sell online ensures that they will stay in high demand.
When you thoroughly understand what problem a product solves, you can already see how your marketing and advertising materials write themselves. But what’s most important is that it helps to position a product in the market.
Any product that simplifies people’s everyday lives and solves a clear problem is a great choice for selling online.
Is it accessible in any local store?
If something can be found in a local store, chances are people will buy it there.
So, scarcity is an ecommerce entrepreneur’s best friend.
When you can offer a unique product that people can’t find anywhere else (and successfully market it) then you’ve hit the jackpot.
That’s why a “perfect” trending product can’t be available anywhere and everywhere. It has to be something new, something the people haven’t seen before.
Does it provoke a WOW effect?
The perfect trending product to sell should make people go “Wow!” It should be something that will make the customer say, “Wow, I can actually use this”.
Although it’s not always an instant reaction, sometimes people need to see the product in action. A couple of images or videos showcasing the product should do the trick.
Does it trigger an impulse purchase?
A perfect trending product has to stop people in their tracks when they’re scrolling online and make them take action. Maybe it’s funny or quirky. Maybe it’s cute or related to a niche interest.
Impulse buyers are always important for online stores, as many of them will come from targeted advertising.
Also, make sure that your store and checkout process is seamless or you risk interrupting the impulsive behavior.
Is it saturated?
A product can only be considered trending up until the point that it oversaturated the market. That means there are too many stores selling the same product and the market has been overexposed to it through advertising.
When this happens, the product can be very difficult to sell.
So, do you have a few ideas of what products you could sell? If so, that’s great.
- Is it small and lightweight?
- Is it easy to ship?
- What is the retail price and how much can you profit on it?
- Is it seasonal?
- Is it in a trending, stable or growing market?
While there are no strict rules you need to follow, there are some general rules that the ideal product for selling online should have.
It should be able to fit in a shoe box, sell between $15 and $200, with a profit margin of at least 20 – 40% across all seasons. But there are always exceptions in the rules. Don’t forget about seasonal products that can be highly profitable during a specific season.
Other important questions top sellers answer before choosing a product include:
- Who are your potential customers?
- What’s the potential size of your market?
- What are your potential sales and profit margins?
As you delve into potential trending products, it’s important to recognize the various forces that influence consumer behavior. Changing societal values and lifestyles, such as the heightened emphasis on health and wellness or the shift towards remote work, can create new product demands. On the other hand, technological advancements can drive the popularity of certain products. For instance, as more people adapt to working from home, demand for home office equipment and comfortable yet professional-looking clothing might increase. Therefore, taking these social, economic, and technological trends into account when choosing products could significantly increase your chances of picking a winner.
So, now, let’s see where you can find trending products to sell online!
How to find trending products in the US: peruse Amazon
Ah, yes. The all-mighty ecommerce powerhouse infamous for its two-day shipping. With $386.1 billion in sales for 2020, the online retail giant is definitely a great source of information for what is trending in the US. Just be sure though, that if you’re signing in from a foreign country, to ensure you switch the site region to the United States at the bottom to see what is hot and catered for the country.
If you are looking for how to find trending products to sell online in the US Amazon is probably the first stop you should make, as it’s the biggest ecommerce platform in the US.
Check out Google Shopping to see trending products in the USA
A great resource for those looking to price-compare and find offers across different website retailers, Google Shopping allows you to explore regional trends and also see categories of products being sold online. It’s almost like a subset of Google just for searching for ecommerce items.
All you need to do is search for an item name or phrase. You’ll be presented with tons of purchase options, from paid-for-ad results to items available for curbside pickup from brick-and-mortar stores. You also have a myriad of features and attributes to filter your results by. To gauge what kind of items are trendy or in-demand among consumers, user ratings, and reviews on Google Shopping. If you want to find what’s trending for online sales in the US, Google Shopping cannot be missed. Like with Amazon though, remember to have your Google set to the United States as the region to ensure you are viewing results for the right country. For the US version of Google, just make sure you are on google.com, and not google.co.uk, for example, which is for the United Kingdom.
Browse Instagram in search for the most trending products online in the US
Photo Source: Mobile Marketing Magazine
In recent years, social media platforms, particularly Instagram and Facebook, have evolved beyond simple social networking sites. Now, they also serve as bustling digital marketplaces where businesses can reach potential customers directly. Features like Instagram Shopping and Facebook Marketplace have changed the game, allowing users to discover and purchase products right from their social media feeds. This has transformed these platforms into hotbeds for trending products. Hence, for an online entrepreneur, keeping an eye on popular items appearing in these platforms’ shopping features can provide valuable insights and might just lead to that next best-selling item for your store.
Yeah, you read that right. Not just a place to share Stories or scenic shots of a sunset, Instagram is a rising platform for business. A business study in June 2023 found that on Instagram Shopping, the ecommerce feature for brand profiles on the platform, 54% of respondents remarked that they bought something after seeing it on Instagram; 87% said they took some kind of action after seeing product details on the platform. And with Instagram Stories, over a third of daily active users on Instagram became more interested in a product after seeing it in a brand’s story.
Photo Source: Sprout Social
These statistics tell us that Instagram is a great pathway to consumer insight and trends. The key is to use a “burner profile” (a profile you don’t actively use) to see by default what’s trending. The reason is, Instagram’s algorithm skews posts in the Explore page to what kind of content you interact with. So if someone regularly who looks at cars on Instagram tries to see what is trending, his Explore page would be biased with mainly car content. At the same time, a person with a fresh, unused Instagram profile will see what is organically trending without any algorithm influence.
Take a look at Google Trends to identify trending products to sell
If Google Trends sounds familiar, it’s because it’s a resource our team at Sellvia uses quite often to identify product trends. Google Trends capitalizes on keyword-search volume to see what people are looking for around the world. With the tool (which is free), you can type in any keyword in any language and filter results by country, time period, or category, or type of search.
Google Trends breaks out a country’s search results so you can better gauge where exactly certain search terms are trending. For example, we see above that for the term “coffee mugs,” Montana has high interest as does North Dakota. This can help you with targeting items or ads for your website.
Hit up Target
What’s Target? It’s one of the largest and most popular retail chain stores in the US. It was once in Canada, but folded, and now remains strictly in the US with nearly 2,000 store locations nationwide.
According to YouGov, Target is ranked by 69% of Americans who have a positive opinion of the store. Even 79% of consumers who identify as having expensive taste have named it as their favorite department store. The store is a large-scale general one-stop store, carrying everything from electronics to books to kitchenware and home decor. The company also ramped up ecommerce in 2010, growing it to $3.51 billion by the end of October 2020, marking 153.9% up from the same quarter in 2019, according to Digital Commerce 360. Definitely, it’s a smart choice to study if you are looking for items that are trending in the United States.
Peek at Walmart
A recognized retail name worldwide, Walmart has 11,510 stores in 27 countries, according to its public financial documents. Walmart is also arguably the largest retailer in the world, with $523,964 million in sales in 2020, according to Fortune, and one of the largest retail chains in the United States. Originally a brick-and-mortar chain always at the helm with Target for consumer loyalty and sales, Walmart really vamped up its ecommerce game via a series of acquisitions starting in August 2016. Since then, the company has grown a lot, with Geek Wire reporting more than $10 billion in sales in July 2020.
What this tells you is that aside from Amazon and Target, Walmart is definitely a place to scope out if you want to know how to find what’s trending for online sales in the US. Categories upon categories of items at this superstore let you see reviews, questions, and product details to see what is hot and favored by online shoppers.
SUMMARY: Thinking of landing in the US for your ecommerce venture? You’re absolutely in the right place because the US is one of the largest markets for ecommerce! Book a free call with our business advisors to find out how to seamlessly start, manage and grow your business! Besides, you have a plethora of analytical and hot online retail giants in the country to look for trends and to find trending products to sell online to your US-based customers.