When it comes to selling products on an eCommerce website, it’s fair to say that customers in the last few years have never been more aware of what turns a good experience into a great experience.
The industry itself is still performing remarkably and taking strides towards overtaking the high street for good. Last year alone, eCommerce as a whole grew by more than 15% to just under $400billion in 2016. As a result of this success, mobile commerce or ‘mCommerce’ is taking hold and retailers are battling with each other to maintain that competitive edge.
So how can you and your eCommerce business stand out from the crowd in 2018 and beyond? Here are 5 easy ways you can stay competitive:
Top quality content
Customers nowadays need to be impressed – not just by your products and prices, but also by the way you present the important information. The days of simply chucking out keyword-heavy product descriptions are gone, so you need to focus on your target demographic and echo what your customers want.
Good product descriptions now don’t keep forcing an overused USP down the readers’ throat, but pique their interest with great copy. In simple terms, keep things reader-friendly by opting for an easy-to-read font and simple bullet point lists for added clarity.
Get to know your audience, understand what they need from your store and do your best to serve them effectively.Tweet this now
Push social media
As an online business, you need to take advantage of audience reach. This means maximising the use of social media accounts where you can target specific age groups, regions and countries. By the start of 2018, it’s estimated 2.5billion people will be social media users, so you’d be foolish to ignore this huge audience.
Nearly 80% of marketers will run some form of campaign based around social engagement online. We’d suggest starting out on Facebook as it’s user-friendly and you can scale your campaign as you gain confidence.
Add a chatbot
Whether you like them or not, the relevancy of chatbots seems to grow every day. Think of them like meeter-greeters in high street stores; they’re ultimately there to help you find what you need quickly and easily. Customers can of course choose to ignore them, but major retailers are finding chatbot engagement figures climbing all the time.
The most sophisticated chatbots can resolve complaints and even complete transactions in the conversation window – clever stuff. The reality is that your customers may find comfort in a human-like program that can assist them directly.
Streamline your checkout
For some eCommerce businesses, over half of all checkout attempts will be abandoned before the purchase is complete – this can be for a number of reasons, including a poor and overly complicated checkout experience. Streamlining your checkout process can not only increase sales, but also increase customer review scores.
The very best checkout processes on major eCommerce platforms keep things straightforward and provide all the information a customer needs up front. They also offer multiple payment options, secure payment processing and fraud protection, so make sure your store is both fast and secure heading into 2018.
Stay customer focused
It’s easy to forget sometimes that at the end of the day, eCommerce sites should always be focused on helping a customer quickly and efficiently. Getting this right all of the time can be challenging – even the bigger organisations can struggle with this occasionally – so you need to make sure your store puts the customer first.
In an ideal world, you want to promote your products in a way that is effective without being disconcerting for a customer. Too aggressive and you’ll alienate your audience; too passive and you simply won’t sell anything, so make sure your store has the right balance.
Last but by no means least – have faith.
The world of eCommerce is always changing and the goalposts are therefore moving constantly. Get to know your audience, understand what they need from your store and do your best to serve them effectively.