E-commerce’s share of all retail sales is now 25%, up from 17% in 2019, and shoppers are rapidly changing brands. Walmart now sees its stores also as e-commerce hubs. 42% of all consumers are certain their shopping behavior has changed forever. And it’s not just retailers: manufacturers sell replacement parts, professionals are selling blocks of time, associations and non-profits sell merchandise. Are you waiting for your old channels to come back?
THE CENTER’S BEST PRACTICE OF THE WEEK: 2.2.3 E-commerce
Definition of E-commerce: “Conducting business online.”
Best Practice Summary
Advantages of e-commerce
- Reach new audiences
- Offer shopping outside of regular business hours
- Customers can inform themselves
Successful website features
- Easy to use, straightforward design and navigation
- Discounts/promotions encountered early
- Enjoyable experience – return customers spend 3X that of a new customer
- Personalized – customize user experience as they go
Website supplementary benefits to seller
- Capture target information – grow email/contact list, perhaps demographics
- Content creates allegiance – website as hub for knowledge of your type of product or service
3 Good Questions (discuss in a management meeting)
- How are online sales linked to operations and accounting?
- How can e-commerce complement other channels?
- Is e-commerce more profitable than older channels?
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It’s easy today to create an e-commerce site with software platforms that have drag-and-drop site builder features, allow for different payment methods, manage end-to-end fulfillments, and set custom shipping rules worldwide. Some, like Wix and WordPress, even support dropshipping and multi-channel sales including through Facebook and Instagram. Is your platform up to date?