Online trends are constantly changing and the eCommerce world is no different, the trick is to stay on top of them. Changing trends can be learnt from, and strategically used to help you improve your product and/or service and ultimately boost sales. With the festive season fast-approaching, now is the time to make sure you’re in-the-know about the latest developments in the industry and capitalise on them. Here are a few of the trends, some of which have been identified by a 2016 eCommerce Industry Report, and how you can make the most of them.
48% of online shoppers prefer to pay for goods via their card
If you haven’t already, it’s essential to enable your business to accept credit and debit cards. Having a variety of online payments solutions available will widen your potential customer base dramatically, and ultimately increase your chances of making more sales. If you choose to purchase a payment gateway in order to do so, ensure that it suits your business, and enhances the safety of your customer’s information.
41% of SA consumers feel that a guaranteed returns policy would make them feel more comfortable shopping online
A returns policy plays a key role in a consumer’s decision to purchase your product or service over a competitor’s. If your return policy is either difficult to follow, or non-existent, then a consumer may very well decide not to go ahead with their purchase. A clear and to-the-point policy will make customers feel far more comfortable purchasing an item if they know the returns process is simple.
Online shoppers spend 75% of their online activity sending and receiving emails
If consumers are spending ¾ of their online time on their email, use the insights you gain about how customers are engaging with your website to send them personalised emails to suit their wants and needs. If a customer, for example, has been browsing for running shoes, you could email them about your range of running shoes and any discounts regarding this gear. This helps you take a proactive approach in closing in on conversions.
58% of online shoppers choose to shop online due to convenience
With more than half of South African consumers shopping online for this very reason, the best way to capitalise on this is to ensure the purchasing process on your website is as easy and convenient as possible. Review your purchasing process, and identify any glitches or unnecessary steps in the system. Simpler processes will inevitably attract more repeat business.
38% of online shoppers access the internet from their mobile phone
A growing number of consumers are starting to purchase goods over mobile apps because of their convenience and ease of access. If your business has an app already, ensure your store looks good and is as fast on mobile as it is on desktop. Catching on to this growing trend will only open up your business to more customers who prefer to shop via mobile.
Visuals are processed 60,000x faster by the brain than text is
Adding high resolution images to your product descriptions will not only grab your customers’ attention, but also makes your products more desirable in a much more immediate way than text ever could. A potential buyer is much more likely to purchase an item and trust that they are getting what they want if they can see exactly what it looks like, from a variety of angles. Ensure all your products have good quality images, and more people are likely to start trusting your brand.
Companies that blog can generate up to 40% more leads than those that don’t
Creating a blog for your eCommerce site that provides your customers with relevant and useful information allows you to connect with customers and build loyalty. If you haven’t started a blog yet, there’s no better time to do so than the present. If a consumer feels more connected to your brand, they’re more likely to choose you over another.
The busiest time for online stores is after the 25th of each month
While this may be an obvious fact, it can be easy to miss out on the higher amount of sales that happen just after payday, when consumers have the most money. Consumers will be more likely to purchase a more luxury orientated product or service just after they have been paid. Take the opportunity to increase sales during this time by launching a new product or service, or placing an item on promotion. More consumers are likely to be attracted by these offers during this time.
With numerous insights and statistics to take advantage of, there’s almost no reason to be left behind in terms of how you sell. Constantly monitor the information you gain from consumer behaviour on your website, and you’ll be on track to taking the action needed to see your sales soar. The trick is to make learning about your industry a constant priority, and to keep up with ever-evolving trends so that your strategies can match them.