As the wind of E-commerce cut through the business world, some companies got blown away whereas, some got in with the flow. E-commerce and online sales have become the next big thing for marketers. Like a moth to the flame, people are getting attracted towards buying products online. Online market space has given birth to many new companies and obviously, new products.
Innovation is at its pinnacle and it’s barely sceptical that this multi-dollar industry will see a downfall from now on. There was a time when online shopping was merely an alternative to getting desired products with better convenience, but now it has become a major part of people’s lifestyle! People are shopping on the go all the time!
In the year 2017, 71% of shoppers believed that they got better deals online. Adding to that, about 80% of the population had made purchases on the internet.
It’s estimated that by the year 2019, there will be as much as 224 million online shoppers in the U.S. These whopping statistics are quite accountable for the fact that many companies are moving online and even those who operate offline are now trying their hand at online sales.
Sale, whether online or offline, never comes easy. Quite a daunting task, it is putting several digital companies at a lot of risk.
Yes, the growing and spreading competition in online sales can be one of the reasons, but surely, there are many more aspects to it. Sales have become a big question mark especially for the companies that are trying to establish themselves.
For the people who are new to online sales, getting everything done perfectly is the foremost priority. People have established a good product-market fit, the product is well developed, the website looks all decorated and decked up and the marketing has been done in full swing. Given all that, why sales are not growing at the expected pace?
What is it that can’t be identified?
It was found in a poll of 2,400 online business owners that about 38% of them experienced moderate revenue increase and about 19% didn’t experience any change in their sales at all!
Such flat graphs can be painful to one’s pocket and the business model holistically.
Let’s have a look at some of the biggest sales problems that the e-commerce industry is facing in making their products sell online. To make a rapid boost in your sales, its firstly, important to identify and rectify the loopholes.
“Make a customer, not a sale.” – Katherine Barchetti
Well, sure you might have already tried doing that but let’s look at it more technically. What might be the possible reasons?
1) Lack Of Research
Research is the most vital part of your sales process. It can be called as Phase I in your online sales journey. Either you complete it at one go or keep jumping back to phase after every hurdle. Your choice!
Choosing the former would be better! Gathering enough data and statistics at your disposal will definitely help you in making better decisions.
- what percent of the population is interested in your product?
- what people think about your product?
- how do they prefer to buy it, online or offline?
- what is the most used method of online shopping?
- Do they use desktop or the mobile version more often?
- who is your target audience and so on.
Relying solely on research data may not sound as a full-proof plan.
Keep questioning yourself at every level to get the most out of phase I. Have a skilled research team of your own if you can or do some rigorous work by yourself!
2) Ignoring personalized promotions
Customers want to be sure that the product they are buying is at the best price. If they are given any kind of discount and better yet, a personalized discount coupon, they will somewhere have an intent that they are getting the product at a lower cost than the actual cost.
Making smart use of your customer data and giving personalized discounts will work wonders for your business. Stats show that 33% customers drop their carts just because they don’t get any discounts at the checkout. Don’t let your customers be a part of these stats!
3) Slow delivery and assistance
It was found that as much as 79% of the customers would go for the drone delivery services if they were assured the delivery within an hour.
Now, we are not suggesting you get yourself a drone delivery system, but the point here is that people are more inclined towards sellers who ensure faster delivery services.
For attracting more audience, you need to have a look at your supply chain and invest in making it more time effective. One option is providing 24X7 support via chat systems so that our customer never feels left alone in times of delivery troubles.
If you can’t afford one, Chatbots are also a thing now. You can buy one online and track customer queries without any hassle.
4) Fraudulence is holding you back
It can be, for an instance that your sales are going just fine, but there is a big fraud going on in the market, making your net revenue drop down. Now, this will become the biggest sales problem you will need to fight back.
The fraudulence has risen from 1.32% to 1.47% in a year and it’s definitely not a good sign.
Increasing and improving your existing services and training your staff to face such issues could also help in avoiding or perhaps, even removing the biggest sales problem – Fraud!
5) Irrelevant product description
It’s the most common yet unattended mistake that online seller makes. Usually, the product description isn’t relevant, small values are played with and worst of all, the description provided is manipulated or perhaps, copied from elsewhere.
This specifically leads to a fail sale when the customer is buying something such as a bag, furniture, containers, and other products which are dimension specific.
As a result, your product description is in some other dimension and the final product that the consumer receives is entirely different. This can cause crushed customer relationship and bad mouth publicity.
Hence, it’s necessary to provide specifications about every angle and material. Also, do not fall in the sweet trap of giving away the same description for every product of that segment. It will lead to two things; one, your customer will not be able to trust you with the information that you have provided since it looks the same for everything and second, your product will never be able to sell itself.
The USP of that product will go missing and the customer will never be convinced to buy it explicitly. Even though this is a small solution to your bigger sales problems, it will still affect the end sales report.
6) Unfriendly Navigation
About 80% of shopping takes place through mobile devices.
Majority of your customers are using their smartphone 24 X 7 and everything’s already become smaller for them.
First things first, get a mobile-friendly version of your website and make sure that the menu bars and other tabs are not teeny-tiny dots which are impossible to locate. It will make the customer experience bad and trust us, it’s all that matters in online sales.
Responsiveness is extremely important as if it is ignored, might lead to a bad customer experience and in turn lead to back to the biggest sales problem – Online Selling!
7) Not Following Up regularly
Now that you have done everything that you could do in your power to increase sales, it’s not like your work is done. So, Gear up!
Does not matter if the customer has made the sale or not, you should never forget to follow up with them. Do it via email or text message or through any social media platform but stay in constant touch.
Your customer is likely to shop again if you keep updating them with the latest offers for them. Naturally, it should not mean that you flood their inboxes with spam mail but try to keep a balanced interaction with your customers.
8) Uneasy payment modes
Your customer would more probably be standing in a mall’s long checkout queue if he had to wait that long to get the product purchased. Why did he/she then take up online shopping in the first place?
9) Not developing a fixed strategy
Needless to say, developing a well-read and experimented strategy is really important for anything to work out. However obvious it may sound, some businesses get so involved in focusing on their product that they forget to make a bullet-proof strategy and most importantly, stick to it.
Make a strategy of getting your sales done and then make sub-strategies for every possible downfall you think you are certain to encounter at any stage.
It’s necessary because when you are acting upon your strategy, you are basically going ‘somewhere’ even if your business is not moving in your favour. If you don’t have strategic planning, then you may get deviated from your track and become indecisive.
Also, sticking to your planned structure will let you have a vague but fair idea about the possibility of making any move. Apart from keeping an eye on all of these ‘little’ things, you must also be completely aware of your competition in the market.
At times, your sales aren’t as good as you figured them to be, not because you have lacked somewhere but because your competitive company did something really good which you never saw coming.
Keeping track of everything around will further inspire and motivate you to think more creatively and consider extraneous factors more than you usually do.
Also, let us know if this blog was helpful for you and what impact did it have on your website by clicking on the link below!