Electronic commerce, otherwise more commonly known as e-commerce, is one of the flourishing industries in the Internet age. Businesses and individuals utilize e-commerce platforms to buy and sell products and services online, allowing people from different parts of the world to be more connected now than ever. Valued at approximately $3.5 trillion, the e-commerce industry is expected to expand even more in the following years. Whether you’re a customer or an entrepreneur looking to start an online store, read on to find out all there is to know about e-commerce, you can also check out this Verfacto article about the customer journey in the E-Commerce sector.
The Similarity of E-commerce and Traditional Retail
E-commerce did not appear out of thin air. The industry was modeled after traditional retail. The only difference now is that most of the basic characteristics of physical stores are converted to online versions. While it is true that one has to be somewhat technologically advanced to navigate an online store, the key to success is also heavily relied on various elements of traditional retail. We have listed a few differences between e-commerce and traditional retail here!
Storefront VS Website
The saying “first impressions matter” not only applies to human beings but also to physical stores and e-commerce websites. People are naturally attracted to things that are aesthetically pleasing and are repelled by “messy” or “dirty” appearances. Having an inviting and pleasant website layout that is simple to navigate will give potential customers a compelling reason to stay longer and purchase something. Our advice? Spend more time on the website design and the results will follow!
Marketing Research and Strategies (including social media)
Most e-commerce and traditional retail businesses have the same goal: to maximize profits; to achieve that is through attracting more customers. Hence, a large number of resources should be allocated to market research and strategies.
Build A Typical Customer Profile
Knowing more about your target audience is essential in ensuring sales on e-commerce sites. Here are a few basic things you should know about the typical customer:
Age and Sex
People of different sex and age have vastly different wants and needs. It is crucial that you pinpoint a range so that you can better streamline your products and selling strategies.
Knowing the profile of the common locations of your customers can reveal certain cultural beliefs within the society, allowing you to tailor certain products to their liking.
Education Level and Average Income
Typically, one’s education level corresponds to their average income. Therefore, with different spending capacities and possibly different ways of processing information, your e-commerce site will have to be adapted accordingly in terms of its messages, marketing strategies, and more.
Providing coupons, deals, and sales is a marketing strategy that works in both traditional retail and e-commerce sites. Customers love a good deal, and providing incentives would attract a new customer base.
When talking about the Internet age, social media definitely cannot be left out. Many e-commerce sites promote their products through social media advertisements or approach social media influencers to endorse products to their followers. Users can then proceed to click on the attached links or e-commerce social media profiles and eventually generate more sales.
Since many brands are utilizing this marketing strategy, it is crucial for you to stand out. Some companies even have a whole department dedicated to social media marketing. That’s how competitive and tedious this sector is. If utilized well, social media can be a huge opportunity for your e-commerce site to flourish.
The Importance of Copywriting
Unlike traditional retail stores, e-commerce sites do not have the presence and assistance of a staff to attend to the customers’ queries. Therefore, on top of visual graphics, the descriptions and copy displayed on the website are what the customers will depend on to make their purchase.
Considerably one of the most important aspects of e-commerce is product descriptions. These are the things that the customers will pay money for so it is important that the writing appeals to them.
A survey found that 9 in 10 shoppers ranked “detailed product content” as a vastly important factor that affects their purchasing decision. Since shoppers are unable to physically feel and inspect the products, the product descriptions have to be detailed and succinct, in a way that they are able to picture what the actual product will be like when they are delivered.
As a rule of thumb, your product descriptions should include the specific measurements, instructions of usage, place of origin, and the benefits. If you have the budget, consider consulting writing service agencies such as “essay on time” and “Essay Pro”.
Quality over quantity. Many website browsers today value depth over breadth. This means that for any given topic, it is better to delve deeper and provide detailed information instead of skimming through a variety of points. An added plus would be to back your claims with statistical and reliable evidence.
The way you present your content matters too. Paragraphs will clear headings and flows are easier to digest. You should also proofread your articles to ensure that there are no spelling or grammatical errors. Consider consulting editing services to do the job for you.
Other Things to Take Note
Apart from marketing strategies, here are other things to take note of about e-commerce.
24/7 Customer Support
E-commerce sites are virtually 24-hour shops that open round the clock. With different timezones across the world, people can visit your site at any given moment. This is where chatbots will come in handy. Common queries can be answered instantaneously and shoppers would not have to go through too much trouble to get answers.
Abandoned Cart Opportunity
Abandoned carts are when shoppers leave the site and purchasing process midway. To push for a higher percentage of complete purchases, make the purchasing process simpler and clearer. State the costs explicitly. Customers do not appreciate hidden fees. Provide a few payment options, preferably more common ones that most people will have access to. In general, try to think from the perspectives of the shoppers
E-commerce is a fairly new industry that is bound to expand in the years to come. Achieving success in the business takes more than just technological know-how. Implement a few of the mentioned tips in this article and you might just see success coming your way!