I read last week that IMRG predicts UK online retail sales could grow by 25-45% YOY this Black Friday. That was before the latest lockdown restrictions that many of us find ourselves under, came into force. It seems that everyone agrees, it’s going to be a cyber frenzy this year, with e-commerce sales likely to be at a record high.
I know first-hand the challenges of moving your business online. Commands started providing e-fulfilment services to businesses over 15 years ago and I have personally helped dozens of small start-ups to grow into thriving e-commerce businesses. I’ve learned a few things about getting started in e-commerce, from my wonderful clients, along the way.
Here are some of the key areas that have made a difference for our customers:
1. Choose a reliable shopping platform
This is one of the most important decisions you will make early on in your e-commerce journey. There are a lot of options. The best platform for you? The one that successfully delivers the outcomes and objectives that you have set for your business. It’s worth researching each of the platforms that you’re considering.
2. User Experience
Make your site navigation easy to use so that customers can easily find what they’re looking for. If visitors get confused, they will leave. Have clear call-to-action buttons that direct your customer through the sales funnel – to make a sale. Optimise for mobile too. According to Outerbox on Cyber Monday 2019, 54% of online visitors came from mobile devices.
3. Streamline your online product offer
Less is often more – especially if you are starting up. Having hundreds of products can be confusing for the customer and a logistical nightmare for you. The right product selection and a user-friendly website – that makes products easy to find will drive better conversions.
4. Payment Platform
Choose a payment platform that makes it as easy as possible for your customers to pay. Customer choice is essential for increasing conversions and sales. Shopify, for example, accepts over 50 providers. The checkout process should be a straightforward hassle-free transaction to avoid customers abandoning their cart.
5. Build trust
It sounds obvious, but make contact information clear on your website. So that customers know how to reach you. It’s a simple step that’s key to building trust.
Send a confirmation email (and ideally tracking information) as soon as you get the order. A clear post-sale strategy will help you convert new customers into loyal ones. You can do this by offering great customer support, communicating regularly, and offering sale incentives and discounts.
7. And finally!
Consider outsourcing e-fulfilment. If online sales increase the way we are expecting them to, you could be attracting lots of new customers to your brand this year. Making that positive first impression is critical. Your orders need to arrive on time, ideally tracked every step of the way. And when your customer opens their order, they need to see that it was picked and packed with care. Nothing kills a customer’s love for your brand more than a disappointing experience when the product arrives.
There is a lot involved, which is why companies that are scaling up or starting up in e-commerce, invest in someone like us to take care of e-fulfilment. We make sure your customer gets a brilliant first impression of your brand. Every Time.
You can find out more info here or call us on 0141 944 3900. Always happy to help!