The pitfalls of e-commerce strategies

July 9, 2021 by
Sanne Leenders

Many companies, both B2C and B2B, are seeing success by blending their traditional sales with e-commerce offerings. This is especially obvious in the retail industry. Retailers that have traditionally been brick-and-mortar are scrambling to find ways to compete and enhance their offerings to customers with an online presence.

Maybe it is not as obvious, but this also applies to many B2B companies. While the product may not be as easy to place on a website as retail merchandise, having that online presence can still be a valuable step in the buying process. Ultimately, this enhances the overall customer experience.

Making the customers work too hard

The Internet can be frustrating. As customers do their research, they can become overwhelmed with choices and options. Furthermore, they are just one or two clicks away from seeing something on a competitor’s website. All of a sudden, customers can experience analysis paralysis. In order to avoid this retailers need to give customers enough information to make easier decisions. This can also link to a deeper dive should the customer want that level of detail.

Not taking the time to understand what it is customers seek

If a customer came to a retailers in person, versus on the website, it could be very helpful to ask why they want a certain product. When a retailer asks the ‘why’ question, they will reveal the seeker. The why is often overlooked. A seeker is a customer looking for a “higher order outcome.” Therefore, it is necessary to find ways to uncover and answer the customer’s why in the digital experience.

The digital team is too tech-heavy

An e-commerce site that is clunky and cumbersome makes it hard for customers to navigate their way around. Sometimes website designers underestimate the need for simplicity with their customers. The digital experience goes beyond e-commerce, impacting virtually every part of the company. This is where many companies fall short. Thus, the chief digital officer could create reports from data at every major function of the digital journey, not just the customer-facing interactions. It is important to understand how digital influences the supply chain, communications, warehousing and more.

Not designed for disaster

There are several disasters which can occur, but the one that impacts everyone has to do with reliability and performance. A slow site or one that crashes causes credibility issues. It is frustrating and causes customers to leave. Therefore, online retailers can not wait for their customers to tell them when there is a problem. Online retailers need to be proactive and continuously monitor their site.

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