eCommerce. Why adopt it?
eCommerce fills the gap as flexible solution for both businesses and buyers in today’s competitive and convenience focused society. No longer do consumers want to spend all day venturing to the streets in order to buy items. Instead consumers want to shop from their own homes.
Increase your Reach
A strong gauge of your business, traditionally, is measured by the number of people entering your store. Imagine if you will, being able to have your store enter people’s home through their mobile, tablet, and computers.
Selling your goods and products on an eCommerce store increases your reach. With an online store, your profits are no longer limited by the number of customers that can physically visit your brick and mortar location. You can sell across towns, and even countries, removing all geographical limitations. All you need is a strong product, and an even stronger marketing plan.
Personable Salesperson Catering to your Every Need
An eCommerce store not only caters to shoppers who find it more convenient to browse and buy at times when retail locations are not traditionally open. It also allows you to have the capability to, target exact types of customers you wish your digital store to show up to.
We know, that you know, that consumers today shy away from picking up the phone. Furthermore, you may not even have the luxury of dedicating a staff for answering phone calls.
Having an eCommerce store can save time for both the consumer and you. Reducing phone calls about availability, specifications, hours of operation or other frequently asked questions easily found on your online pages. Let’s not forget that after all, time is money.
Inbuilt into your Sales Strategy
The buyer’s decision-making process has changed dramatically in recent years. Buyers conduct their own extensive research online before ever speaking to a salesperson. They are also making more direct purchases online and through their mobile devices–which is another article on its own.
An eCommerce store is one of the best marketing tools your business has. Not only can the use of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) when building your site lead to more chances of your business getting found in search engines. A huge number of marketing techniques can also work alongside your website, including pay per click advertising, social media marketing, and email marketing, all of which can include links back to your website.
In our experience, creating a very targeted, niche marketing plan delivers the best conversion results. In contrast to shouting aggressively into the entire online space.
We don’t believe in the saying “Shoot for the Moon, even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” We rely on analytics and data points to substantiate our strategy because we believe that if you miss the Moon (relatively close and big to us and there’s a lot of nothingness out there), chances are you’ll miss the stars too.
Scalability and Validation with Growth
As your business grows, it is very likely you will want to grow your product range and your target audience. You will also want to develop your business for customer requirements and consumer demand.
Many experts will tell you is that an eCommerce site allows you to scale your business accordingly, allowing you to add more product lines, more payment options. And when the business grows, you can ship to customers without worrying about changing your location or moving to a larger premise as you might with a brick and mortar store.
We know we’re not painting a very good picture for signing up for a space in the mall. And while this article may dissuade you to operating a physical store, we believe otherwise.
We believe that eCommerce offers an even greater range of opportunities. View it as your testing ground for new products and services. A perfect platform to launch new lines and variation to existing products to optimize the best performing items for your brick and mortar store, giving you an advantage over your competitors who are still on Business 1.0.
Welcome to Business 2.0.
Operating hours: 24/7
An average salesperson would set you back $2,000 a month, while the running cost of a simple eCommerce store will only cost you less an average of $200 a month.
An online store is available all day, every day, especially on holidays. This means your customers can visit your store at any times, no matter what their schedule might be. Singapore has one of the world’s longest working hours and people don’t always have the time to physically go shopping. Instead, more and more people are choosing to shop online to find the items they want or need (Lazada, Amazon, RedMart).
There’s no reason you should make it difficult for customers to give you their business.
In general, an eCommerce store will have lower operational costs than a brick and mortar store. In addition, inventory can be automated with a web-based management system and help to decrease inventory costs.
You would also employ fewer people as you won’t have a store that needs to be managed during opening hours. Typically, small physical stores will have at least two people on staff which are paid an hourly rate. In theory, a small e-commerce store could be managed by a single person, likely the owner, for just a few hours each day.
Even a simple payment processor would make it easier to take payment with lower transactional fees and multiple options to choose from.
Converting your Dynamic Crowd to Destinational Crowd
eCommerce is an ideal way you can take your business from a traditional brick and mortar store to an innovative, well-loved brand.
By offering great products 24 hours a day along with online customer service, blogs, and social media, no longer is your business one singular store. You are now an online presence and persona that your business can be the home of to your products and the general home of your business, allowing you to fully expand your product ranges without having to worry about moving locations or worrying about not being able to expand your business.
Build a strong enough brand and you’ll have people coming down to your store to experience the brand and become a part of your story. More on the importance of branding here.
Outlook on the Future of Commerce
To provide our readers with the most accurate of information and advice, we ensure that we informed with the latest facts and figures in the industry.
The latest report from Econsultancy in collaboration with Dentsu Aegis Network, here are some of their key findings:
- Centennials are likely to have their first encounter with the products they will purchase online. 86% agree that “I usually see products that I want to buy online first”. This confirms the idea of the ‘Zero Moment of Truth’ among Centennials, showing that the internet is their first point of contact for information and buying decisions.
- 82% “prefer to buy products that are ethical/sustainable brands” while 70% express a preference for local brands.
- 74% shop at a website with brand names (e.g. Amazon, Lazada) but Centennials also want to buy through social media/chat apps (46%).
- 56% preferred cash on delivery, while 48% paid via credit/debit card.
Your Physical Store is not Dead.
This article is by no means advising you to abandon hope for your brick and mortar store. There is a reason why new businesses and existing businesses open up storefronts and the reasons are for people to put a face to a name, to build trust and in the greater scheme of things, validate their choice of purchase with a physical experience.
While more people are enjoying a complete end-to-end online shopping experience, click and collect is also a popular model.
Nextopia reveals 44% of shoppers are more likely to purchase online if they are able to pick up their items in-stores. 62% are more likely to shop online if they can return an item in-store.
The key to success for your business is to employ an effective and appropriate use of both online and offline channels to create a solution that better satisfies your buyers’ needs and shopping methods.
Want to further our conversation?
Thinking of starting up an eCommerce store? Not sure what steps to take from here? Looking for the entire network to support your eCommerce store? Let us know and we’ll be pleased to help you!
We have gathered several resources in the event you require assistance on one or more of the required segments for your proposal or the overall process.
We have a team of business consultants, marketing consultants, fulfillment consultants and much more to assist you in any queries you may have!