Jeff Bezos has accumulated more wealth than entrepreneurs of all economic fields, including technology. In just over 20 years, a reassertion of the importance of online trade and marketing, and that what we know as e-commerce is beginning.
In the UK alone, 688.4 billion pounds was spent on E-commerce sales in 2018 and this is projected to grow year on year. This combined with the fact that 48%+ of all online shoppers in the UK use Google to start their product search, we start to see the immense potential monetary value in online businesses.
Understanding the importance of online retail and the exciting future that is being predicted, it is important for all brands and companies to recognise that, if they do not want to lose market influence, it is essential not only to have a presence in the virtual world, but also to know adequately to attract clients.
As a result, even traditional businesses are reaping all the rewards e-commerce stores bring.
In this article, we will be listing a few reasons for the importance of establishing an eCommerce site for your business; no matter how big or small!
1. Global Reach
With a physical shop or office you are often geographically limited to nearby markets, so if you have a London shop and want to sell in Birmingham, you’ll need to open another physical location.
This restriction does not extend to your online shop. You can market your digital e-commerce business to anyone and everyone, anywhere in the world!
This obviously increases the potential customer base greatly and at no real extra cost after your eCommerce business has been put live.
Furthermore, even your local customers are likely to shop more online, even if they don’t convert as often.
2. Always Open
In general, traditional companies have restricted hours, but an online e-commerce shop can be open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
This is highly customer friendly as people can choose when they shop. While merchants can see revenue rolling in while they are sleeping.
From looking at statistical data, online customers make purchases around 8pm. Many offices and physical shops are closed around this time, missing peak purchasing hours.
3. Reduce Costs
Compared with traditional stores, e-commerce businesses have substantially lower costs. Think about fixed operating expenses, rent and staff. These expenses are brought down significantly with an online eCommerce shop.
The lower costs allow eCommerce stores to be more competitive, leading to significant increases in market share.
4. Automated Inventory Management
Automating inventory management became much simpler with the use of automated web services and third-party supplying software.
This saves billions of dollars in production and running costs for businesses that opt for an e-commerce website.
Resource and stock management can become very complex. You can now handle your stock very effectively over multiple networks with a click of a few buttons.
This gives you a huge amount of control when it comes to stock and delivery management. These networks can span between online marketplaces like Etsy, Amazon and eBay alongside your eCommerce website.
5. Precise Marketing
Online merchants can collect surprising amounts of consumer data to ensure they target their products to the right type of people.
This lowers the cost of acquiring customers and allows online e-commerce companies to remain extremely adaptable.
Your online ads can target specific demographics. Facebook Ads give you scarily targeting advertising, for example: “Online shoppers aged 30-50 who have a family relative with a birthday approaching”. (Here is a great article by Hootsuite demonstrating Facebook ad targeting).
This kind of precision can help increase conversion rates and keep advertising costs as low as possible.
Furthermore, utilising search engines to better place your business on the map can drive huge amounts of traffic. Amazon SEO is a great way to get your products shown in front of new potential customers.
6. Local independence and adaptability
When running a business, an eCommerce shop owner is not tied to any location. You can run your e-commerce business, as long as you have a laptop and a connection to the internet.
Small local businesses have the chance to flourish and grow at a huge rate if their store is correctly implemented online.
Moreover, tying your customer base to one location can lead to significant risks for your business. An online shop can provide your company with a much higher level of adaptability.
Think about the Covid crisis. Businesses with an online presence thrived even during great economic uncertainty. Traditional and local stores suffered greatly.
7. Customer shopping data
An eCommerce store can provide you a lot of insight into customer behaviour and shopping habits. Tools, such as Hotjar’s heatmap and Google Analytics pairs with Google Tag Manager can provide amazing detail in your shoppers browsing path.
This can give you further information into what customers are interested in and at which stages of a marketing funnel they get stuck!
Finding out these patterns in physical stores relies on customer surveys and questioning – a time consuming and costly task.
8. Payment Flexibility
Flexible payment solutions allow consumers to make the payment with a multitude of options, making it easier for them to buy, and so are more likely to convert.
Online payment options such as PayPal are used regularly by many consumers but are few and far between in a physical shop.
Online 3rd party payment services allow an eCommerce store to set up a huge number of options for customers with a few clicks of the mouse.
Setting up an eCommerce shop is a no brainer for those who want to expand their sales opportunities. Hopeful these 7 reasons demonstrate the importance of an eCommerce site for your business.
However there are barriers businesses come across when starting a new online venture. We often see the main problem being the lack of new and organic traffic.
This can require companies to outsource professionals to help drive customers to their newly formed platform. Digital marketing such as PPC (online advertising) and SEO services (Search Engine Optimisation are crucial for attracting new customers on any online platform.