The e-commerce world is booming. It’s predicted that there will be 1.93 billion global digital purchasers in 2019. This isn’t just a lot of potential clients. In fact, with an estimated world’s population of 7.7 billion people, that’s about 25% of the global population shopping online. What’s more, this year, e-commerce sales are predicted to account for almost 14% of retail sales worldwide.
Despite the growing popularity of this particular sector, some businesses are still reluctant to let go of their traditional physical store model. Yet, more clients are asking about your website, search for you on social media, and are eager to communicate with you via different digital channels. It’s high time you moved your business online, whether you’re a small crafts store or you sell heavy machinery for the B2B niche. Let’s have a look at some important steps needed for this.
Have the right security
Cyber-security is a major concern for both customers and companies. Particularly for new, unestablished e-commerce businesses, it can take a long time to build up consumer trust that their personal and financial data will be secured when making purchases while e-commerce businesses also need to worry about data-breaches themselves. And with the use of mobile payments becoming the second most common payment method after debit cards by 2022, this poses a further risk.
Setting up a secure payment method that keeps all consumer data safe is a must. Find an established business and one that accepts different payment methods, offering as many options as possible to satisfy customers.
Build a proper supply chain footprint
Amazon Prime is a prime example of flipping the script on the entire supply chain. Their same-day delivery model is something customers want as a norm, not as a luxury. Zero-click will be among the most transformative techs in our lifetime and will require suppliers to reanalyze fulfillment.
The same is true for you. You need to build your footprint from the group up and be able to ship from several locations within a market on the same day. There are various third-party logistics networks (3PL) that you can use to accommodate this need.
Implement an omnichannel approach
Not too long ago, purchasing some goods online, such as clothes or shoes, seemed like an odd thing to do. How can you buy something without trying it first or feeling it in person? Making a purchase often meant visiting a neighborhood store, talking with a salesperson and getting a product. Fast forward to this year and shopping has become a dynamic and multi-layered experience. They can look for a product online, compare price ranges, and read reviews.
Even traditional sectors, like the gas and oil industry, are implementing this concept and are making it easier than ever before to find industry necessities in an online marketplace. For instance, there are a lot of companies that sell oilfield equipment online with great success and a stellar digital presence. The point is to never view your brick-and-mortar stores and your digital presence as two separate entities, but rather as an integrated shopping experience.
Obsess about your performance metrics
Online conversion is a discipline that is part science and part art. E-commerce retailers require the right layout and cosmetic. However, the best e-commerce marketers know how to optimize every page to start a trial, cross-sell and move the purchaser to action.
An experienced online retailer knows the result of every action from conversion to click-through, by item, by page. Create your store from the start with these concepts in mind, and A/B test your entire website to understand real shopping behavior.
Use existing infrastructure
There are a lot of small businesses that try to cut costs by hiring a relative that’s “good with computers” to build their entire digital presence only to discover later the website wasn’t optimized for search, easy-to-navigate, or is lacking in many other aspects. Don’t be one of them.
If you can’t employ professional web development companies, your best bet would be to use e-commerce platforms such as Shopify and BigCommerce. Rather than spending quite a dime on web development, they will do most of the heavy lifting for your business. They make it quite easy for you to build your own online storefront, upload pictures of products and their descriptions, as well as process orders using a safe shopping cart – all without the need to possess any tech-savviness.
The e-commerce sector is booming at an alarming rate, and its popularity won’t go away any time soon. That is why every company has to begin planning their move to this powerful field, and make the most of its potential to connect with and communicate to a bigger audience.