Currently, all they talk about is ecommerce and how it will change (or changes) the future of business. Well, business as art of selling stuff has always been in the state of permanent changes and boundaries pushing, and this digital transition definitely won’t make business less profitable or inventive. To the contrary, digital transformation in retail offers a trove of opportunities that may help boost sales and gain new loyal customers. The key is to use it right and to employ all the newest trends for the business benefit.
What is ecommerce?
To begin with, ecommerce has at least two meanings. It can be a mode of doing business on the web or with additional involvement of the web and technology as such, or it can be an online shop in particular. For example, Amazon is ecommerce mode in that it sells things online without offline stores (it has only warehouses from where goods are shipped), and Amazon is the famous online marketplace where you put goods into your virtual cart and pay for them right from your couch.
How to build ecommerce
If you have a working offline business, engaging in ecommerce means setting up a site and, preferably, a dedicated app in addition to your offline deals. Applying the cutting edge technology is a good idea, but only if your brick and mortar store is already well equipped with previous generations of technical goodies.
If you only plan to launch your own trade, doing ecommerce means developing the business plan and implementing it online from scratch.
No matter the case, the tips for building a workable and profitable ecommerce are the same across the industries and the online and offline universes.
Tips on building great ecommerce
- Start with USP – unique selling proposition. If you sell items that you manufacture and customize, it is one thing. If you trade in goods that are easily available across thousands of other sites, it is another one. To stand out among countless competitors on the web (where choices seem literally endless), you need to present this unique benefit, the reason why they need to do business with you, not anyone else.
- Devise the brand message, clear and meaningful. This is the continuation of the previous point. Brand message articulates the benefit you offer. It neither overstates nor understates, it says exactly what your product does for your customer. Like, ‘Just do it’ by Nike. They deliver the sneakers, and you perform better with their help. The message is short, jingly and memorable. It is great for promotion across media and is great for placement on branded goods. Such a message will be an excellent brand awareness tag for your site, app, offers, promos, etc. So think it through.
- Get a website with great and easy to navigate UI. A website guarantees you online presence without depending on someone else’s plans, like it happens to people running business on social platforms. It is a must, if you plan to stay in business and make profits. But a website should be convenient and easy to figure out. An item, a description, a price, a buy button. No excessive popups, windows, overlapping boxes, etc. The simpler is better.
- Have a dedicated application. If you have a website, why engage in shopping app development? Because a website is like a store, and an app is like a peddler who walks door to door and entices people into buying. An app offers a potential buyer opportunities to customize the search and experience. The app delivers notifications, offers and ad campaigns right to the smartphone, thus prompting a user to engage and possibly buy. A website needs to be visited deliberately, and the app gently nudges a customer and pushes him or her to take an action right now, without searching the web and doing the job of choosing.
- Never underestimate the organic growth of engagement via social media. The website and the app are indispensable, but social pages are channels through which millions of users will learn about the brand, its message, its website and find the link to the app.
- Customers support / chatbots: the last but not the least point for consideration. Making an informed choice, getting explanation or troubleshooting session is integral part of brand reputation and customer satisfaction, so include this function into your app and website. Even if goods you sell are just like goods sold all across the web, if you set up efficient customer service, people will come to you for this particular service, because everyone likes to be cared for.
These are the basic tips for building a successful ecommerce project. New tech and solutions arrive every day, but care for customers and easy access to goods you sell are the benchmarks against which you need to measure every step you take.