12 Sep Why you need ecommerce
Ecommerce is becoming as important to business as a telephone, fax and email address, and you’re only limited by your ideas and the effort you want to put into it. Here’s why having your own online store is what you need. A unique product is sometimes not enough to make your business a success. Customers today are more demanding than ever and seek to buy your products and services online, right there and then. Your customers don’t want to print off forms, email you to ask questions or wait until Monday to call you.
If you don’t have an ecommerce facility and won’t let them buy it now, you will miss out on sales. Having an instant electronic payment facility can make all the difference for customers purchasing something at the last minute or in a hurry to buy what they want. Fortunately, having your own online shopping cart does not require the kind of financial outlay that setting up a new physical store does and has very low overheads once it is up and running.
Your business will also benefit from the opportunities that ecommerce creates: through cross sales, special offers, gift vouchers and product up-selling all available on the spot. For example, if you’re selling flowers your website your customers could also offer balloons at checkout time, offer customers an exchange rate calculator, give them the opportunity to enter a discount coupon from a promotion you’re running or give certain customers a special discount for being loyal to you. In your physical store you could do this too, but many sellers do not have time to look up a customer’s sales history every time someone comes through the checkout and many customers feel such overt cross-selling in a physical store is invasive.
New opportunities are also created through ecommerce: You could sell online advertising space to other businesses You could set up an affiliate programme or reseller programme where others obtain a fee or commission when customers buy after coming from another website You can reduce the effort and costs of processing orders – your site handles the checkout process and informs you of orders after they’re made You can continually update content on your site for no additional costs – whereas updating brochures or flyers will cost you money to reprint them.
Your website becomes a 24/7 salesperson for your business, open tirelessly for your potential customers Business-to-business sellers (B2B) can benefit from having the ability to offer group or special discounts and impose business rules such as minimum order amounts and shipping regions automatically.
Check out our Ecommerce Xmas Ideas too.