Having a brick-and-mortar store is not enough to grow your business. Ecommerce helps you attract new customers, drive sales, and build relationships with audiences.
That is particularly true for businesses trying to stay competitive amid the Coronavirus pandemic. Concerned about their safety, many customers have shifted to online buying.
In this article, we discuss the top five ways an ecommerce site benefits your business.
1. Helping your Collect Customer Data
Most consumers feel uncomfortable leaving their names, phone numbers, or postal codes to physical retailers. That is where ecommerce helps.
Your online retail website is a treasure trove of customer data. Have you ever wondered how Amazon knows which products you like? Because it tracks customer behaviors on its websites by collecting first-party cookies. That way, it knows how much time a user spends on the website, which products they view, their past purchases, etc.
With the right web analytics tools, you can collect customer information easier. You can further use it to deliver more personalized shopping experiences, segment your newsletter lists, or retarget customers.
If you are selling internationally and targeting customers in Europe, be careful of the GDPR.
2. Expanding your Reach and Selling Internationally
Small businesses are limited to local customers. Whether you are looking for a franchise for sale or starting a business from scratch, having an ecommerce website helps you expand your reach.
For starters, when selling online, you can focus on targeting international audiences interested in your products and services. Global sales benefit your company’s growth on multiple levels. You will expand your marketplace exponentially, boost sales, and grow an international brand.
Sure, you will need to plan your international marketing and sales strategy. There are many factors to consider, including pricing, shipping, fees, marketing localization, etc.
3. Personalizing Shopping Experiences
In the era of personalization, customers want to feel special. They expect brands to understand their unique needs, preferences, and problems. Most importantly, they want you to deliver personalized solutions to their problems.
Like we mentioned above, having an ecommerce website helps you learn more about your customers. When you track what products they viewed, purchased, or abandoned, you gain invaluable insights into their online behaviors. You can personalize your product recommendations and cross-sell and up-sell to customers faster.
Most importantly, you can use this data to build stronger relationships with customers. Based on the information you collect, you can segment your email lists and create custom newsletters for different audiences.
4. Encouraging Customer Loyalty
Repeat customers expect you to appreciate their loyalty. According to research studies, 52% of American consumers will join the loyalty program of a brand they make frequent purchases from.
Given that, it is not surprising that many brands are investing in customer rewards programs. Accenture found that over 90% of companies have a loyalty program.
Building a loyalty program comes with multiple benefits. It gives you a competitive advantage in the fierce marketplace. Most importantly, it boosts sales, builds relationships with customers, and retains customers.
Make your loyalty programs relevant to your target audiences. Choose the system that resonates with them and make it easy to earn points. That way, you build trust with them and motivate them to sign up for your loyalty program.
5. Building Trust with Customers
Today, customers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. That is where your ecommerce website can help.
For example, many brands allow customers to rate and review their products on their websites. By showing customer reviews, you improve brand credibility and encourage customers to purchase faster.
Adding customer testimonials is another effective social proof tool. Ask your repeat customers to write a few sentences about your brand and publish them on your website. Always include a customer’s photo, name, location, and job title (for B2B companies).
Another way to build trust with customers is to invest in high-quality product photography and explainer videos. Remember that online customers cannot see your products in person. By taking shots of products from multiple angles, you will visualize them in the digital environment.
Alternatively, you can use VR technologies to gain customers’ trust. For example, IKEA has an AR furnishing app. It lets users virtually place 3D models in their very own space.
Having an ecommerce website is not optional anymore. It is a necessity for any business wanting to beat competitors in 2021 and beyond. While this is not an ultimate list of ecommerce benefits, it can serve as your starting point.
Eve Anderson is a marketing specialist turned blogger. Interested in sports and exciting travel destinations. Love to share content that can inform people.