Ecommerce is certainly looking like the way to go more and more. Electrical appliances, clothing, even food, it’s all becoming more easily available through the internet especially as physical stores are finding it harder to compete. But having a great site and digital storefront isn’t all you need to make it a success. You need to look behind the scenes and make sure that the other sectors of the business are all doing what they can to support it.
The site’s design itself should be a cornerstone of the online branding, but a site alone isn’t enough to get you the kind of visibility that the business needs. People need to see what deals are on offer, to understand that the site is trustworthy and, above all, why they should choose you over your competitors. If you’re using outbound marketing, you need to lead with value first and make it easy to capitalise on that value. Get used to effective landing page placement on any links you’re putting out. At the same time, think about bloggers and influencers you can use to spread the brand without having to use your own marketing voice, showing positive social proof that your services can be trusted.
You might be a digitally savvy business, but you’re still a retailer. That means you still need to think about inventory management, about the relationship to customers and retaining them better. To that end, you need to keep track of the right data. If you’re in clothing, then you should think about apparel software. The right choice of niche enterprise resource planning is going to offer you more functionality out of the box compared to the generic options. You need to know where you’re most effective as well as what stock you have available at any moment to get an idea of the demands on the site. To that end, you should be looking at industry specific packages.
As well as tracking the stock you do have, you need to ensure the stock you’ve already sold is heading in the right direction. Outsourcing your fulfilment can take a lot of the strain off your business. If you’re running your own logistics, however, you need to make sure you’re paying close attention to how well it’s doing. You need the double-checking software to make sure addresses are a match before something goes to the wrong place. You need telemetric devices to track delivery routes and driver behaviour and eliminate any factors that are creating an inefficient delivery system. You need to set up a proper shipping room where the comfort of employees and the speed they work at are both well catered for.
A great site is undoubtedly essential. But without the right marketing, no-one will use it. Without managing your resources properly, it’s easy to get inventory wrong and lose customer data that can prove very valuable. Without an effective delivery system, you’re failing to keep the loyalty and happiness of the market. Don’t forget to invest behind the scenes as well as upfront.