For smaller businesses, it is harder to stay afloat and compete with bigger companies and companies their size in the market place. Being in search of new avenues and markets, companies often look at eCommerce as an avenue to expand into much diverse markets and to capture nontraditional customers for their businesses.
So how can eCommerce boost your business? Read on for five ways it can do so, and to see how other businesses have had success with eCommerce.
eCommerce Influences Purchase Decisions
When customers are deciding on a purchase, they start by looking online.
Your website is your showroom, where customers can research your product and see all the reasons it is right for them.
Now imagine that same product was just a couple of clicks away from being theirs. A well-designed eCommerce site can influence purchase decisions by showcasing your product at its best, and making it as easy as pie to take action and make a purchase.
Staples’ customer-friendly online shop has been such a success that they have scaled back their bricks and mortar stores in favor of it. Their secret?
A searchable and convenient catalog that makes purchasing easy, with plenty of product reviews to encourage that sale.
eCommerce Taps into Social Media
It’s a social world out there, with customers turning to social media such as Facebook and Twitter to research potential purchases.
For a smart business, an engaging social media presence can raise their company profile and encourage traffic and sales. A well thought out social media strategy marries well with a good eCommerce site, forging connections with buyers. Offers, competitions and other shareable content can be used to grab attention and encourage visits to your eCommerce store.
Walmart takes its social media presence seriously, with a YouTube channel filled with useful videos, and a Facebook page that’s regularly updated with shareable feel-good pictures of their food.
It’s a seemingly simple strategy but it connects emotionally, garnering them a lot of likes – and custom.
eCommerce Is Convenient
Whether they’re just getting through the door after a 10-hour work day, or getting the shopping done at the crack of dawn before the kids get up, customers appreciate the convenience of online shopping.
People’s lives are hectic; getting to a bricks and mortar store means taking a sizeable chunk out of their day for a detour. eCommerce means you can fit into your customer’s busy lives, offering the products they want, when they want them.
Amazon is a prime example of the convenience of online shopping, with a vast online store of products available anytime, day or night. This convenience combined with a quick checkout process, order tracking and quick shipping is a winning combination.
eCommerce Can Broaden Your Brand
eCommerce can be used in ways a traditional bricks and mortar store couldn’t, whether that is by offering intangible products, providing some kind of web search, or giving customers the ability to order a product to their exact specifications.
eCommerce can be used to broaden your range of products for sale, bringing you more custom and diversifying your sales.
When Apple first started iTunes, it was viewed as an iPod marketing tactic rather than a serious online store.
With billions of sales, iTunes is now a vital part of the global Apple brand, demonstrating how eCommerce can be used to broaden what a brand offers, diversifying and increasing sales.
eCommerce Offers a Personalized Experience
There are many ways in which eCommerce can be used to forge a more personal connection with customers.
For example, an eCommerce site could include personal recommendations, order tracking, quick customer service, or personalized rewards, allowing your business to offer the same kind of personal service online that you would offer face to face.
Shopittome has built an entire business, and reputation, around offering shoppers a personalized experience. Busy browsers can enter their brand preferences and size, and receive regular personalized newsletters full of bargains to suit them.
eCommerce offers businesses a vital opportunity to offer their customers round-the-clock convenience.
A good eCommerce strategy that adds excellent customer service and a dynamic social media presence into the mix can spell higher traffic and better sales for your business.
Product Catalog is the heart of any eCommerce webstore. It is equivalent to a showroom in a brick and mortar store. Companies put a huge amount of effort when it comes to their showroom. Then why not to pay the same attention to your online showroom, the product catalog.
Here are five ways to optimize your product catalog:
- 80/20 Rule:
Do you remember Pareto’s famous 80/20 rule? The rule is 80% revenue is earned by 20% of products. Adding a lot of products just for sake of adding them take the attention off the main products. Also, your SEO team must work harder to get the site ranking. Is it not a good idea to keep them focused on the products that make money for you?
- Ease of Navigation
Customer do not spend time trying to find the product they are looking for. They need to able to find the products very conveniently. Providing a product search is a good feature, however, the customer not always know how to search for the product they look for.
Therefore, the importance of properly laid down Product Catalog cannot be undermined. The product should appear on every relevant page, offering alternate products and suggesting products all help site visitors to easily navigate through the product pages.
- Product Descriptions:
In a study, it was found that people pay more attention to text for standard items like TV compared to the images when making a buying decision. The reason is that they have a fair idea of how the TV or fridge or deep freezer will look when placed in their living room or kitchen. The main objective is to establish what are the usage benefits of one product over the other.
- Product images/videos
A good quality image can do magic when it comes to personal or household items. Again, remember that with lack of ability to touch and feel the product being offered by your eCommerce site, the pictures try to give the feeling of how they will look and feel when you wear them. This is also why you will put multiple images of the same product from the same product and the ability to zoom in and out to give a better buying experience to your customer.
- Product Comparisons
When buying standard products, the customer is more keen to see the features and benefit of the product as long the look of the product is not considered ‘ugly’ in their eyes. Therefore, many sites provide a product comparison feature to the visitors on their site. This feature help customer to spend considerably less time to compare the different products on their buying criteria and they are expected to spend more of their dollars on your site than on the site of your competition.
6. Product Offerings
In the brick and mortar store where customer can touch and feel the product that you are offering. In an eCommerce web store, customer uses different set of parameters to make a buying decision. In addition to their trust in your offering, the way you present your products can make or break the viability of your eCommerce store.
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Your eCommerce customer has never been to your shop or warehouse before; they do not know you, have never dealt with you, have never done any business with you. Yet you are still asking them to trust you by charging their credit card for their purchases.
Why would they do that? They will never ever make a purchase on your site until they trust you. The question, therefore is, whether your site could earn you the customer’s trust or not?
Here are eight reasons why your customer trust you:
- Brand Recognition
There is no doubt that customer trust Amazon, eBay, Alibaba more than an independent business in the ecommerce world. It is same as people trusting Walmart more than a corner store. This phenomenon is called Brand Recognition.
Every business has some level of brand recognition with comparatively a lower segment of customers compare to the big companies. It takes time and effort to establish a brand. It is difficult task but not mission impossible.
- Customer References/Testimonials/Reviews
Customer references and testimonial give confidence to the prospective buyers. It gives them the assurance that they are getting the right product and services from the right supplier.
People trust references and reviews more than the sales talk. The more the customers can associate themselves with the person behind the review or reference, the more they are going to trust.
- Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is providing a recommendation from someone having an influence over the buyers. One of the living example of such Influencers is Oprah. It is a known fact that the products start selling by itself when it is recommended by an Influencer.
- Company’s Statistics
Companies often publicize statistics to convince their prospects that they are dealing with an established company. Someone who has been around and who is expected to be there in the future.
To demonstrate, let us take the opportunity and share some statistics about the solution that we sell and support:
5. Press Coverage
Trust is immediately built when customer finds that your company or the product get a coverage and recommendation in a press articles. Review in related Press like GQ for fashion sites or Forbes for businesses, give an instant boost to your credibility and hence your sales.
People feel more comfortable on the sites which interact with them more in humanly rather than robotic manner.
Avoiding technical jargons and speaking in plain and distinct tone invoke customer confidence. It shows that there are real people behind the organization. This make customers feels welcomed and comfortable in dealing with the organization.
7. Establish yourself as an Expert
Demonstrating the depth of knowledge and expertise in specialization is a very strong way to build trust with eCommerce customers.
Providing extensive but usable information like learning sets, eBooks, Self-Assessment forms, to your customer are powerful tools in the trust building efforts.
Blog writing and educational videos are some other methods of building rapport with the customers that you know what you are talking about.
8. Address Customer’s pain Points
Explaining how company’s’ product and services can provide solution to those problems help them relate to the company and its offerings.
An unbiased description of the product and services being offered, how they address to customer’s needs and its’ comparison with the competition earns customer trust on the company and its products.
x2x eCommerce can help
x2x eCommerce provide comprehensive eCommerce solution through its solution and its network of partners having expertise in their own respective fields.
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We have put a great deal of effort on the eCommerce site with almost everything that we thought was needed – getting great images, extensive and relevant description of products, checkout button and much more – but haven’t closed a single sale. Why?
Your Webstore is not geared to generate sales as much as your competition Webstore is. Here is why
Just because you have built an eCommerce web store doesn’t mean that people will flock to it. A good number of startups spend extraordinary time and effort in setting up their online store – only to find no one buys anything from their store. With many billions of websites competing for business, it is a fight to attract traffic that can be converted to and generate revenue.
The most important reason for a store which is not getting traction from the customer is the eCommerce site itself. There can be multitude of factors that contribute to the success or failure on online eCommerce store.
eCommerce Store Web Site Builder
The most important reason for a store which is not getting traction from the customer is the eCommerce site itself. There can be a multitude of factors that contribute to the success or failure of an online eCommerce store.
eCommerce Store Web Site Builder
It is an over-simplification not true that all the eCommerce solutions available in the market do the same job i.e. help develop a website on which you can host your Webstore.
Developing a site on a program that uses the well-known eCommerce platform allows you to enjoy the benefit of using the latest technologies and the powerful features included in the solution.
Solutions like Magento eCommerce has a customer base of 250,000 businesses, a big development team and a huge ecosystem of 150k independent developers who continue to create the program and applications for the solution.
On the other hand, if you use a program that was developed by a company with very small customer base like 100 to 500 and a development team of 8 to 10 people, there is no way that this developer can keep up with the latest development and innovation in the industry. Even a company like eBay who owns Magento cannot keep up with the new developments in the industry without the team of independent developers scattered all around the world.
Not enough traffic OR not the right traffic
Both problems are unique in nature but point out in the same direction which is that the right customer of your website is not being approached. Either the customers are not being approached as they should be or not the right people are being targeted in your marketing campaign.
Bringing traffic to your website require a lot of base work before you even register a site for your Webstore. Have you developed Persona of your customer? Have you done the SEO, are you using all the various tools and software available that help you rank your site higher than others, are you taking the advantage of social media?
All these are big questions with a big knowledge behind them. Your competition, most probably, is using the latest technologies and tools available in the market today. They may also be using an eCommerce software that is capable to quickly adapt itself to the new technologies as they are introduced in the market allowing them to outperform your eCommerce website.
How can I take benefit of top of line eCommerce program and still can manage my website from my Microsoft Dynamics GP ERP?
Your requirement to manage your eCommerce store from your Dynamics GP ERP should not pull you down and even after having a nice looking and comprehensive website, you should not be wondering why your competition is outperforming you.
X2X eCommerce – a different concept in integrated eCommerce
X2X eCommerce add a new module to Dynamics GP to add new features in Dynamics GP which are required by the eCommerce program but do not exist in any ERP system like Product Catalog, SEO integration, web related information for the products, customer price level and much more
Higher Sales lower TCO (Total Cost of Ownership)
Magento eCommerce front end is known to have higher sales and a third total cost of ownership. X2X uses Magento eCommerce interface to develop your eCommerce website which allows it to use all the benefit of the technologies already developed by Magento developers all over the globe to bring your site on top of the competition and to beat the competition.
The change in the way customers now buy and the emerging advancements in technology have changed the way people conduct business over the years.
There is no doubt that eCommerce has changed the way consumers can learn about and decide to purchase your products. However, one fact that remains consistent and will continue to remain that way is the everyday business management that is necessary to keep your business making money.