Why Ecommerce is Essential and Practical
Ecommerce is essential these days for both large, established as well as small retailers, as consumers are becoming more internet savvy and move more towards online shopping. Smaller scaled retail shops need to really consider setting up shop online in order to stay ahead of the competition and to achieve a further reach out to customers, but not many smaller retailers have yet jumped on that bandwagon.
The most compelling reason to set up Ecommerce is that more consumers are going online nowadays to look up and research on products first, before making their way down to the shop to purchase the item.
According to a recent 2015 study by a renowned consulting firm, nearly 90% of consumers perform checks online before making a physical purchase at the store, hence retailers of any scale cannot ignore the importance of having an online store catalogue for consumers to browse through; maybe even more important than having a physical store filled with products.
A similar study for a leading search engine think tank also discovered that 79% of shoppers during the 2013 holiday season rated web-based store catalogues as one of the most beneficial aids in their shopping quest. Once this shopping behaviour is translated to other non-peak shopping periods, Ecommerce would be a necessity for all retailers going forward.
Some retailers are even closing physical stores to focus on growing their business through Ecommerce. For items that may be a daily staple needed for a business’ operation, such as a specific brand of printer toner for example, it may be easier just to order online from the regular supplier rather than taking time to go down to a physical store to make the purchase.
Certain ‘long tail’ or localised items may also be easier to locate on Ecommerce sites, such as Amazon rather than a physical store in areas other than its place of origin, as the latter may not find it economically viable to stock such items. So for small retailers who face financial or warehousing constraints, Ecommerce may indeed be the way to go round such constraints.
Some consumers may view online shopping as a rather anti-social activity, as they see shopping as a social exercise in terms of making it a total sensorial experience of venturing to the stores with friends to enjoy seeing and touching the products before making a decision to purchase.
However, with the appearance of a social bookmarking tool like Pinterest, where a consumer can virtually gather all the information they want or need on any item or matter of interest, online shopping is now turning into a very social experience where one can reap the benefits of different Pinterest users making available information and recommendations for the same or similar item of interest. Some Pinterests are linked directly the online stores, making it a completely resourceful and engaging shopping experience.
Ecommerce also provides the opportunity for a retailer to improve customer service by offering assistance beyond store hours in the form of an FAQ online panel and up-to-date live information, such as in the case of movie booking sites for cinema operators.
Hence Ecommerce is becoming essential from a practical point of view as well for every retailer.
Last modified on 05 April 2016