I've been working in retail since I did car boot sales with my dad at 8 years old! I moved up in the world to start my first online business on eBay selling wallets and making £900 a week whilst at University (in Liverpool). I write about digital retail but mostly talk about football, just don't ask me who I support! You can follow me on twitter @dclutt.
This year, yet again will see a huge increase in online shopping intelligence across the UK. If you have an old eCommerce website (by old I mean two years or more) then chances are your customers will be expecting features that you do not have.
The trouble is, consumers who use your website also use the likes of John Lewis, ASOS and other top retail stores so they expect a certain calibre of website. In most cases, this is front end like mega navigation or customer facing features like automated email order status updates. For 2012, this is what people will be expecting:
- Mobile Commerce:
If I’m sat on a train with my iPhone and I go to a website that has flash or is slow loading – guess what, I won’t use it and I definitely won’t buy. Traffic expectations from mobile is estimated to be 20% this year with some of our clients already getting that percentage. If you don’t optimise mobile then it will affect the overall conversion rate of your store.
Another abbreviation :) Tablet commerce is different from mobile commerce (although put in the same bracket) as tablets such as the ipad bring a whole new tactile experience for brands and consumers. Businesses can now use the iPad in a way which is closer to print than it is digital such as the iPad version of GQ magazine. Although using a normal website (without flash) is okay on the iPad, brands can do more to give a richer experience on these devices. A great report done by Alexander Interactive shows how brands are doing this. Get report here
- Social Media as a customer service point:
See you later 24 hour email replies! Customers can get you in seconds via your Facebook page or on Twitter so you better get someone manning it! This could be deemed a bit of a negative but twist it into a positive by considering the up-sell opportunities and how good it reflects on your brand when your response says “…replied 2 mins ago”.
Get exposed better. People use search engines to find what they want to buy online – it’s simple. Grow your brand with offline methods and of course rank for your brand (believe me, this does get neglected sometimes). Google shopping has took a big shift towards being a price comparison engine with it’s sort by price options, so get your Google Shopping feed out to perfection.
- I want the cheapest or the best deal:
We’re in a market where every penny makes a difference – it’s horrible. Impulse purchasing is lower than ever and people research what they buy a few times before they actually do. So… give them a reason to buy from YOU. Offer codes and free delivery are the easy options but they work. Another option is to go to your suppliers and force them to lower their prices, you’ll be surprised how many retailers are at the moment!
If you would like a successful eCommerce website, please get in touch on 0800 008 7872 or email: email@example.com for more details.