E-Commerce websites today and consumer behavior

2018-09-06T20:43:57+00:00September 6th, 2018|

E-Commerce shopping onlineMore than 1.6 billion consumers today bought goods and services online from e-commerce websites in 2017.   Even more e-commerce business is expected for this year.  Many students are now considering careers in online sales with the future looking bright in this industry.  But e-commerce is not a new concept.  In fact as early at the 2,000s there were sites showing up such as Amazon and eBay.

Going forward, business owners were interested in selling their products without paying the fees associated with the middle man.  And so began a shift to the millions of e-commerce shopping cart individual websites of today.  As the shopping cart sites become more user-friendly, they are quickly dominating the marketplace and are reaching a larger audience.

There are several options for e-commerce sites today.  You can choose from a shopping cart site website, a shopping application, email or make a sale using social media such as Facebook.  If your e-commerce store is not optimized for mobile use, you will be at a disadvantage to other more options available. You can improve the user experience using Google’s AMP format  (Accelerated Mobile Pages) which is an open source website designed to improve performance of the e-commerce website. Used correctly, this will improve search capability.

E-Commerce and brand awarenessEnd users must trust your brand:

It goes without saying that for an individual to purchase from you, they must trust what you are selling, as well as buying from your online store. Those e-commerce sites not providing customer feedback to boost the trust factor can expect less purchases than those sites providing more customer reviews. Buyers definitely do read all customer reviews and these should be kept up to date.  You should also offer more customer reviews upon request.  More, not less is best when it comes to good customer feedback.

E-commerce product descriptions and individual pages:

As the e-commerce site is being developed, it is good to pay close attention to product descriptions.  It is generally accepted that the description should not be only a generic one. To enhance search engine optimization value, it is wise to add additional information.  This will serve to attract more people who are looking for any specific item. Category pages should be treated like individual pages.  Add links of interest to topics as it relates to the products advertised.  This will also help the site rank for these specific pages representing products.

Faster load time means more purchases:

None of us want to go to an e-commerce site to purchase goods and services that is slow to load.  The rule of thumb for fast loading sites is to have the site available within about two seconds.  One of the things that the e-commerce site owner can do to improve the load time  is to go with a virtual private server. This may be a bit more expensive but in the long run it will help the website to succeed. We refer Blue Host to our clients.  This may be one of the solutions you look at.  There are many.  But the server you choose must be a fast server to satisfy your client’s need for a a quick buying platform.

chat bot use for e-commerceUsing the chat box feature on e-commerce sites:

Many e-commerce site owners swear by the chat box feature.  This term refers to software which uses artificial intelligence to interact with customers using messaging (back and forth).    It allows the customer to ask questions and get immediate answers.  It may improve the buying experience.  The chat box feature may also be more cost-effective than hiring a customer service representative.  Learn more about a Capterra Chat Box.

Benefits for choosing Woo Commerce software:

The e-commerce (backend) software that we refer to our clients is “Woo Commerce.”  WooCommerce integrates into WordPress software. This makes it easy to manage both your website content areas AND the shopping cart from a single login point. The support for WooCommerce is vast;  a quick Google or Bing search will give you a variety of solutions to your questions as well as easy to follow video tutorials. WooCommerce comes complete with payment gateways built in. Setting it up with PayPal is done within minutes using your PayPal login email address.

There are also many add-ons for shipping, returns, labels, and more. It is a full-service shopping experience. One word of advice: Be prepared to learn the software. Any eCommerce website is not self running. You must run it as if it were a walk-in store.

Conclusion:  Study e-commerce software before purchasing:

E-Commerce platform choicesWe suggest to all of our clients that once they decide upon having us design an e-commerce site that they study several types of shopping cart software. Choose the one that is easy to use and understand.  Once the site is designed, programmed and launched, it becomes the site owner’s responsibility to run the shop day to day.  This will include adding and deleting inventory, setting up shipping methods and payment gateways.

We find that “Woo Commerce” offers the most user-friendly shopping cart software for e-commerce clients.  If the client is unable to learn the software after reading the instructions, we do have a programmer who can be hired by the hour to run the store.  But this can become very expensive.  Contact our professionals at Inside Design Orlando to determine what options might work best for you.

Thanks for stopping by and hurry back for all things design and programming.

Staff Writer

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