- 10 key factors why some e-commerce succeeded (list top 10 success);
With the Internet today we can do almost everything and anything just at our finger tips. Sometimes I can go for months without entering a physical store but still have plenty of new clothes being delivered to my house. 😅😁 My point being, with e-commerce technology now, we can buy practically everything we need online!
Businesses use the Internet to expand their market, making it possible for people to buy their products without going to their physical store. I can shop brands from the UK, the Us, Australia or even Thailand without needing to be physically in that country.
The best thing about some of these e-commerce websites is that we can even shop from our smart mobile devices either on the browser or the brand’s own App!
In fact, we can even shop for groceries online and they’ll deliver the food to our doorstep!
So there are some tips for e-businesses who want to ensure that they are successful! Firstly, for those just starting out, they should focus on creating their brand image and awareness.
1. Set your vision, goals, and strategy. Know where you are going and how you are going to get there. Invest the time to identify your business goals, strategies, and tactics.
2. Establish a business model. Understand how you are going to make money, how the various parts of your business work together, your resource requirements, and what your risks are. Identify the areas that need more investment.
3. Understand your customer. Know your customers and what your value proposition is. Why do they come to your store and ultimately buy from you and not your competitors? Are they loyal or simply bargain hunting?
4. Sell products consumers want to buy. Once you understand your customers, be sure to sell products that meet their needs. Watch for upcoming trends. But remember that once a product is a best seller, you’ve probably already missed that trend.
5. Buy low, sell high. This old adage is truer than ever for online retailers. Competition is fierce. You have little control over what price the market will bear. But you do have some control over how much you pay for your inventory. Negotiate, find several sources, buy as close to the manufacturer as possible, and consider private-label generic products.
6. Get found. Invest in search engine optimization, advertising, blogging, social media, and other marketing activities to drive qualified traffic to your online store. Never assume you have all the traffic you need. Be sure to diversify your traffic sources as much as possible.
7. Offer a superior customer experience. Ensure that your website, content, merchandising, landing pages, promotions, shopping cart, checkout, and customer service support your sales goals.
8. Personalize your interactions. Try to personalize every customer interaction. This can be as simple as a first name in every email promotion. Strive to deliver a unique shopping experience within the capabilities of your ecommerce platform.
9. Deliver the goods. Ship your products in a timely fashion. Meet the expectations of your customers. Follow-up with confirmations. Ask for feedback. A sure way to lose a customer and get a bad review is to oversell and under deliver.
10. Build relationships and community. Try to convert a one-time buyer into a repeat customer. Encourage community through social media, events, or other online activities. Participate in conversations wherever your target customers are.
11. Stay fresh. Refresh your content, post seasonal messaging and offers, provide timely insights, and provide incentives for return visitors to your stores. Consider seasonal themes around your store to give it a fresh look.
12. Experiment. Always look for ways to improve. Try new initiatives. Don’t be afraid to fail.
13. Think mobile. Mobile websites and apps are where consumers will shop in the future. Go mobile now. Most smartphone owners already use those devices to shop online. That number will only increase.
For businesses that have already kind of gained speed on the whole e-commerce front, they should make sure they do the following:
1. Make sure their prices are competitive as their customers will always compare their prices to that of their competitors. Companies can use tools to extract the price from their competitors’ websites. 2 of such tools are https://import.io/ and http://aruhat.com/datacrops/
2. Ensure that their products are of high quality. Most people have this preconceived idea that products purchased online will pale in comparison to those purchased in physical stores in terms of quality. This could perhaps be because customers are unable to physically touch the items before purchasing them online. Therefore, businesses should ensure the quality of their products so that customers’ fears will not come to fruition.
3. Customers all look for high security when it comes to the monetary transaction of shopping online. By using secure networks and tools to aid in the purchase of the goods, customers will feel more secure shopping with the brand. SSL certification is mandatory for these websites.
4. Transparent shipping and promo terms and conditions. One of the most annoying things I come across when shopping online is when i cant find the shipping information and terms and conditions. If I want to buy from you, i would need to know whether you ship to my country, how much it would cost and how long it will take. Therefore, having a transparent and easy to navigate information sections regarding shipping and promotions is very mportant for businesses online.
5. Instant customer support! This is another important point, if i’m unclear about certain things regarding your products, I would want to be able to clarify them with you before making my purchase. More often thatn not however, many businesses lack good customer support and either fail to get back to you or take a too long a time to reply that I’ll lost interest.
6. User experience and reviews. No matter how good i think your brand or produts are, it would always be good if other customers have given their own reviews and feedback about your brand or your products so I would feel a stronger sense of security and might be persuaded more towards purchasing from you.
7. M-commerce. Now it is no longer just e-commerce but having your website mobile friendly or even create your own app, just like Zara, ASOS, NastyGal, Zalora and so many others have done! This makes shopping even more accessible and on-the-go!
Lastly, these are tips for more global success, perhaps for businesses that have already been developed and are more widely known.
1. Have flexible pricing. The wider you sell your products, the more market prices you have to be aware of and will have to make changes accordingly. Be aware of what prices are competitive in which countries. When 50 pounds is competitive in the UK, it would be $80 in the US and that may no longer be competitive in the market. So having flexible pricing would be very important to your business.
2. Currencies may often be confusing especially when customers have to constantly keep converting the prices. A good thing to do here would be to offer every relevant local currency for most of your customers. This will make them more willing to purchase due to the ease of knowing the price.
3. Price presentation is important too because more rounded prices and more friendly and has a higher persuasion to customers. $30 looks a lot nicer than $31.47.
4. Allow your customers to pay in ways that they are more comfortable an d use to. In countries where bank transfer is more common, allow bank transfers. In countries where people are more used to paying with credit cards or Paypal, allow that as well. This makes your customers feel more comfortable shopping with you!
5. Showing sales taxes in a way your online customers are familiar with will avoid suspicion and increase buying comfort. Different countries have different tax laws and tweaking the information to match each customer could go a long way.
Now, here are a few of the most successful e-commerce websites and why!
1. Fallen Hero; responsive design and smooth checkout process
2. AO.com; great product pages
3. ASOS.com; some of e-commerce best practices, social, customer service and more
4. B&Q; in-store wifi and loyalty apps as well as great user experience on desktop.
5. Hunter boots; nice clean product pages with smooth checkout and good use of colour contrast for call to action buttons.
6. Schuh; product pages are a good example of how to use images in e-commerce, with great presentation and a wide range of angles.
7. Mulberry; blend of luxury and user experience. Well-designed with some great imagery to showcase its products.
8. Freepeople.com; pure e-commerce, created a strong visual brand identity online and invests in striking product imagery.