Imagine you’re going for a hike in the mountains. You need to plan your journey and pack the right equipment. You might sit down with your map spread in front of you and decide which route to go on. Then you might pack some water, trail mix and a raincoat into your backpack to be prepared for any hunger or extreme weather.
In short, you’ve created a strategy for your trip – you’ve decided where you’re going and you’re ready for any challenges you might face.
Investing in a commerce strategy is similar. You need to figure how you’re going to get to your goals and what you’ll need to get there.
Shopping online has been increasing in popularity over the past few years anyway, but since the outbreak of Covid-19, people have no choice but to do the vast majority of their shopping over the internet. Along with the rise of technology and the instable of the Coronavirus pandemic, it’s becoming wiser to invest in eCommerce as a way of maintaining business and satisfying ever-changing customer demands.
But why is strategy so important?
There are always two types of challenges that face businesses: competition and conversion.
- Competition – anybody or anything that takes customers away from you. It will most likely be another manufacturer creating the same goods as you for a similar price. Your e-commerce strategy needs to factor in this competition and aim to win those wandering customers back.
- Conversion – the process of bringing the customer to the point of actually going through with the action. This is when you have succeeded in engaging your buyer personas and they are ready to purchase from you.
Strategy is important here as you need to know exactly how to overcome competition and precisely how to get your personas to buy from you. And with more and more manufacturers choosing to sell online, it’s important that you keep up with this competition.
If your personas can’t buy the products they need/want via the method that they prefer then your business won’t look as good.
More than an online shop
If you’re holding back from setting up eCommerce because you feel that it’s too costly, here are some of the benefits and why you really should consider such a strategy:
- It really isn’t that expensive. Digital advertising can actually be more cost-effective compared to traditional channels and it can be easily adjusted to attract your buyer personas. You can also save on staff and rent as you will need to employ less people (and therefore need less office space) as you can use software such as chatbots to answer basic customer queries.
- You can use better target marketing and include more personalisation. Digital marketing and selling models allow you to gather, synthesise and use customer data much more easily than in-store marketing. You can track your customers' habits and use them to your advantage – if you know exactly what your customers want, then it’s much easier to market directly.
- You can use Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and social media to create higher traffic towards your retail. If people are aware of your presence online and what you have to offer, then they are much more likely to purchase from you rather than your competitors.
- Overall, eCommerce offers a more pleasant customer experience. People don’t have to leave the comfort of their own homes, and they also get to avoid traffic, parking, pushy people. And at the moment, it also helps keep vulnerable people keep safe from coronavirus.
- People can buy from you 24/7. You can’t keep a shop open all day every day, but a website is available anytime. This is an enormous benefit to your business as your revenue is no longer relying on salespeople and opening hours. You have plenty of opportunities to boost your sales.
- Even though your website is open at all hours, you can install chatbots to answer FAQs. You can even add an option for your customers to enter their contact details and query if it’s something the chatbot can’t answer. A customer service rep can deal with them in the morning, ensuring quality CRM transparency.
At the end of the day, customers want flawless and reliable service, and all of the above options help to create the innovative features customers will trust.
Better business with strategies
Because of these factors, setting up eCommerce for your business is more than just an online shop. The opportunity for increasing revenue is undeniable, and the process of shopping is vastly different than walking in and out of a shop.
Therefore, you must invest in an in-depth commerce strategy to help you accomplish this. Set your goals and stick to them.
We’re convinced eCommerce will benefit your business big-time. However, we know that there are even more ways to boost sales than a robust eCommerce strategy! Download our free guide on increasing basket revenue to find out more.