What are the key issues faced by ecommerce business owners today?
Though the ecommerce industry shows tremendous growth potential, the growing number of competitors makes it challenging for a small business owner to survive in this area. Nevertheless, those who manage to address the key concerns faced by many ecommerce businesses put themselves in a position to succeed. These issues include:
With so many options, online consumers have changed the way they shopped online. For example, more and more people are using mobile devices to shop online. Research shows that shoppers using mobile devices doubled in 2017 while the percentage of consumers using desktop devices fell (Source: Invespcro). You have to be aware of how your customers behave so you can get their attention before anyone else does.
While online retailers invest a lot of money to drive website traffic, a high conversion rate is never a guarantee. In fact, the average conversion rates in ecommerce are between 1 percent and 2 percent (Source: Bigcommerce). Therefore, online both B2C and B2B ecommerce companies must create a strategy to help them identify leads that will most likely convert.
Launching targeted campaigns
For both B2B and B2C ecommerce, every bit of information that you can gather about your leads or customers can be used to generate sales. The challenge here is to build a system that enables you to learn about their shopping interests, preferences, and tendencies. Equipped with this data, you can create personalized upsells and cross-sells that target certain customer segments. According to research, this strategy can account for over 30 percent of your revenue (Source: Forrester).
Using advanced analytics
The content management system of your online shop might provide you with free analytics tools that offer basic sales figures. For instance, you can view sales numbers from a month or a year ago. But there are no sales trends or forecasts. This makes it extremely difficult for B2B ecommerce companies to optimize their sales pipeline. The same is true for B2C ecommerce companies. Without sales trends and forecasts, they won’t see which products or SKUs are pulling in sales. Lacking these insights, they will likely struggle to keep their inventory adequately stocked to anticipate and meet demand.
Another issue that can help you get ahead is the ability to predict and keep in step with cyclical periods. For B2C companies, this means anticipating seasons when there’s high demand and preparing for seasons when sales are thin. For example, online gadget stores may expect sales to spike during the holidays. Meanwhile, B2B companies can refer to cyclicality in terms of industry or overall economic performance. They can adjust their sales targets based on projected economic contraction and expansion. This enables them to anticipate expenses such as staffing, marketing, etc.
Collaborating with support, invoicing, and purchasing teams
Regardless of whether you’re running a B2B or B2C ecommerce company, your customers will have multiple points of contact with your company. This includes engaging your customer support, invoicing, and purchasing teams. To pull this off, many businesses rely on several applications to communicate with customers and address their concerns. This raises the need to integrate these applications into a system that enables you to have a single view of the customer.
Managing customer data
Every customer who makes a purchase from your ecommerce business provides you with a lot of valuable data. Companies that do not know how to organize and leverage this data will most likely lose the opportunity to make countless repeat sales.
These are but some of the challenges that you, as an ecommerce retailer, must face head-on if you want to keep your business growing.