Today's business world is all about eCommerce ? about you being able to do business and to buy whatever you want, from the comfort of your own home. Instead of waddling through stores, losing your time and energy, harassing salespeople, you can just sit back and do everything with just a couple of clicks. And of course, any good company should take advantage of this.
These eCommerce platforms exist online, and so, like everything on the internet, they are subject to change and evolution at a rapid pace. You need to keep your ears to the ground and watch for any new trends, functionalities, and options that may show up. Below you can see some trends that may appear for 2019.
Focus on mobile
A great deal of online shopping is done via mobile. This plays nicely into the notion that eCommerce is all about the comfort of the customer. In fact, in the USA, for example, mobile commerce brought in over 450 billion dollars! Now, mobile optimization for websites and platforms is nothing new. In fact, these options have been present for some time now. The difference here is that before they were a nice bonus. Now, and especially in 2019, this will simply be a must. There is little chance that you can be successful if you don?t optimize your website. The competition will, simply put, burry you. However, there is another point here that needs to be made ? Google?s algorithms.
You want your platform name to be as close to the top of Google?s first page as possible. The way you can achieve this is by utilizing Google?s algorithms. The thing here is that slowly but surely, Google has been implementing mobile-first indexing.
What this means is that mobile optimization will carry a great deal of weight and power for the relevant algorithms. The main issue here is that even if people search your company and services without using their phones, you will still see a drop in your rankings.
So the takeaway here is that you need to prioritize mobile optimization as soon as possible. And do not do it halfheartedly. Set up proper load times, check if your design responds to mobile properly, and optimize all images and other elements as soon as possible.
Creating communities of buyers
The internet has been a place for communities to grow and expand for a long time. You can find forums and websites dedicated to certain brands and products. However, for 2019, you want to have a hand in doing this, not just letting things go their own way. You should aim at creating a community for your company?s brand, you want fans and followers, not just regular consumers. Then, you want to give them the ability to buy products from you easily. You can accomplish this in several ways.
First of all, set up your social media networks. Writing the best blog posts you can go a long way, but focusing on other media, such as videos and infographics, is also a good idea. Create interesting content, or at least post it on your social media. You should also try to contact and communicate with existing forums and groups.
Any good SEO company, like?GWM agency, will tell you that SEO is paramount if you want to get your company or platform out there. But, they will also tell you to search for changes and movements in the market, seek out new trends and ideas. One of these changes that we should all prepare for when 2019 comes around are updates Google makes that will be relevant to SEO. Namely, Google, as is custom, continually tweaks and refines its algorithms. The new focus seems to be time on page, and bounce rates.
Clickbait has unfortunately been king for some time now. But, it seems things are moving towards how much time users spends on a certain page. This, in turn, means that pages with better and more informative content will prosper, while clickbait will, hopefully, become weaker and weaker. You also want to keep your site as fast as possible. Minimalism and quality content is key here.
Having all spheres of your website development in line is, of course, important. Getting the basics down will not be useful. However, looking at new and exciting technology can be just as important. One of the things that have been talked about the most for some time now is AR. Augmented reality has incredible and varied functionality. For example, IKEA has an app where you use their dedicated AR app to place furniture and other items into your own home. This gives you an unprecedented insight into a product. The same goes for clothing or accessories. A customer can then know exactly whether a product is right for them or not, instead of spending time browsing items offered by other companies.
The future is no! Yes, corny, we know ? but true nonetheless. If you want to be and stay competitive, you need to follow all the trends that are right there, behind the corner. Speak with influencers and people in the field, educate yourself as much as you can. Google is continually updating its algorithms, focusing on time on page and bounce rates. New technology, led by AR, is going to change the eCommerce landscape. Mobile optimization is not an advantage anymore, but a must. And of course, communities of buyers are here to stay.
By some estimates, every 1 out of 10 websites on the internet is an eCommerce site- putting its number in millions. And even if we take into account the top 1 million eCommerce websites, the top 50% sweep away 97% of the revenues. Now if you have a digital store to run, this should make two things very clear to you: 1. With so many eCommerce platforms out there, it is almost certain that whatever you are selling, there is someone else doing it as well; 2. eCommerce is a winner takes all industry and unless you are among the top, you are a failure.
Our apologies if that seemed a bit demotivating but we have a different point to make. If most of those eCommerce sites sell more or less the same products, how come a few succeed over the others? That where user experience comes into the picture. While having a wide catalog and competitive pricing are the basics, it is not the products themselves that deliver success but how consumers feel while purchasing it, is what makes the difference. That is, if you want your eCommerce business to be successful, the user experience is where you need to excel and here is how you do it:
Remember this- the easier customers find your website to use, the more they will engage. Finding a product description is as important as looking at the way it is displayed on screen. Proper indentation, spacing, font style, font size, colors and figures with labels ? all adds up to the overall aesthetics of the content. And while businesses agree that their store should be easy to use, the problem arises when it starts to conflict with the interface or aesthetic beauty, as some call it.
The solution is simple- if you have a layout that looks very good but isn?t simple to use, don?t deploy it. The best example is Amazon.com. They have all the expertise and resources to create the most beautiful site on the internet but yet choose to be more efficient. Keep all your products in neat categories, provide images with a description, provide links on images, allow express sign-in, are just a few of the small details that can make or break the mood of your potential customers.
But how do you test the usability? The general rule of thumb is to look for friction, i.e clicks. You should aim to minimize the number of clicks that a user has to do to make the purchase.
While it is tough to quantify for those customers who are just browsing, it is the single most important factor for regular customers- they should be able to make the purchase without having to use their mind even once. If it takes more than 4-5 clicks from the product page to the final invoice, you need to cut down the complexity.
Feature-rich shopping cart
People are generally confused while shopping and having a shopping cart that can?t handle even the simplest of tasks like changing quantity or size, is simply off-putting and generally results in cart abandonment. That is if you want your traffic to convert, get any seasoned eCommerce development service capable of building a sophisticated shopping cart for your store.
Most of the internet traffic comes today from mobile devices but the majority of the businesses still rely on payment methods designed for desktops. After all, it is okay to enter credit card details on a full-size keyboard but on a 5-inch screen when on the move? Not really. This is something eCommerce developers must take into account- responsive design can take you only so far. after that, it is only a mobile-first strategy that can deliver a superior experience.
As an eCommerce store, you must provide the widest possible options in terms of payment. The aim should be to not force customers to use any payment mode they haven?t used before- because people generally aren?t comfortable sharing financial details!
We all know that in these times when everything has become digital the biggest tool of your marketing strategy is your website. But, of course, it is not enough just to have one. You need to design it carefully in order to allow your users to have free circulation inside it and all the information must be easy to find to make their trip through your sales funnel as fast as possible. Your prospects need to be fully aware of the nature of your business and you need to provide them with all the information necessary, so you don?t get yourself into the positionwhere you will need to explain to your potential customers what is that your company does. In order to help your sales team use their time as effectively as possible in order to shorten your sales cycle, take a look at these tips:
1. Have your answers prepared
Today most of the people are reluctant to buy products or services right away. They want to know everything about a certain product before they purchase it, which results in series of questions that can take for hours. The point is that all these questions are quite similar, so you should gather them around and analyze them to find the certain pattern. When you do, just answer them and put those answers on your company website?s FAQ page. That way you will evade unnecessary questions and make the impression that you?re completely open to your buyers. Maybe it seems too difficult to ?guess? all the questions because people have different ways of putting them, but you just need to use effective keywords and every potential customer will find the way to the answer he or she seeks.
2. Spit it out
Most companies instruct their sales team to postpone the information about the price of a certain product or service until the end of the conversation, which can result in a wasted time. You?re gonna have to tell the price to the customers eventually, so don?t spend hours in the negotiations to realize in the end that they are not prepared for such price from the beginning. Instead, you should make a price page on your website with all the pricing information. That way you won?t be losing your time on people who are not prepared to pay the required sum and that transparency will also make your business honest and trustworthy. Just spit it out and then your salesman will do the rest.
3. Lead them the whole way
When it comes to buying services, your customers will want to know exactly what they get, step by step. We live in capitalist society and our new god is called ?Calculation?, which means that nobody likes surprises anymore, especially when their money is concerned. That?s why you need to tell them in advance what exactly can they expect from doing business with you. That?s why you need to include a step by step breakdown of everything that will be happening once they purchase the service. You can use this breakdown to include some call to action buttons that will additionally drive the interested ones deeper into your sales funnel.
4. It?s not enough being honest, you need to prove it
Today we are surrounded by false information and exaggerating, so you can?t blame your customers if they are not ready to believe everything you say in the beginning. You need to back up every quality you claim to possess. If they are not able to see black and white proof, you won?t have the credibility in their eyes. You need to prove your worth through testimonials and case studies. But don?t brag and flatter yourself, that will cause suspicion immediately. You need to tell stories about your customers, not your company. If you want them to know you offer reliableand super easy storage?solutions, you need to talk about satisfied customers whose life was changed by that product. Yes, changed. You should take examples where your customers were in the transitional moments of their lives like changing homes or expanding the business. This way you will have a voice of a satisfied customer but also an emotional factor to which your potential buyers can connect. They will be sure that you?ll take care of their possessionsbecause you?ll have proven results and there won?t be a need for any additional proof that you?re a confident business choice.
5. Let them know who you are
Tell the story of your company through a portfolio where your work will speak for itself, without bragging. Do it like with testimonials and case studies – concrete results, spiced up with some images and maybe even video. People want to see with their own eyes, and that?s why it?s also a good idea to include pictures of your employees because customers? money goes into their hands. If you give them a face and a name, your future customers will be able to develop their trust more quickly.
Through your ecommerce website, you likely have grand dreams of turning a large, steady profit. An ecommerce website acts as a virtual storefront, and when effective, it can entice consumers to make purchases and can process a sales transaction without effort required on your part. However, in order to be effective, an ecommerce site has to receive focused traffic. Many savvy website owners have decided to use a blog to drive traffic to their website and generate interest. Here are a few secrets that you can put to use to enjoy better results from your blogging efforts.
1. Make Regular Posts
One of the key benefits associated with blogging is that it can boost your website?s search engine rankings. Search engine rankings are determined by several factors, and two of those factors are the age of your posts and the frequency that new posts are added to the site. In order to enjoy the benefits of a business blog, you will need to make at least two to three new posts per week. You can write these yourself, or you can outsource the work to a freelance writer.
Your blog posts should be written with SEO strategies applied. You should research the top keywords that customers are searching for when looking for your company?s offerings. Then, target these keywords in your writing. Each post does not have to focus purely on those topics, but the words can be intermingled throughout the text to boost search engine rankings when the words are queried.
3.Evoke an Emotional Response
The best blog posts may be written with SEO strategies in mind, but they also are written with the knowledge that your potential consumers will be reading them. With this in mind, they should be written in a manner to create an emotional response to buy The best blog posts will stir emotions that may relate to the desire to have the latest and greatest equipment, to look beautiful and stylish, to provide for a family, and other related emotional responses.
Customers may want to buy what you are offering, but they also want to know that they are getting a great deal on their purchase. Consider using your blog posts to describe key features that make you products better than the rest, to talk about sales and promotional offers, to describe how these products can save a consumer money or time with use and other value-added benefits.
5.Address Your Customers? Needs
Consider what needs your customers have when buying your products and create blog posts that describe the needs as well as how the products fill those needs. If your products are functional in nature, such as if you are selling vacuums on your ecommerce site, this may not be difficult to do. If your products are luxury items, you will have to appeal to the perception of needs or to emotions. For example, a customer may buy a luxury watch because of the desire to look distinguished or to enjoy the finer things in life.
Your ecommerce website?s blog can be put to great use to drive traffic to your website and to convince customers to make a purchase. Put these secrets of blogging to use today, and watch the incredible results take hold!
Written by Warney Boyd
Warney writes about small business tips. He recently attended a business presentation by?Brett Kelly??the CEO of?Kelly+Partners in Sydney, and found him to be one of the most motivational?speakers he has come across.?