The pandemic has significantly impacted the consumer landscape. From visiting stores to shopping online, the future of e-commerce is expanded to a plethora of new opportunities. Considerable offline spending has shifted online. Before covid emerged, some products were supposed to be restricted to in-store shopping only. Consumers rarely bought certain items online. However, the pandemic has created a new array of customer demands and expectations in the retail world and digital experience.
Some common needs from customers include immediacy, convenience, speed, and intuitiveness while shopping online. On top of this, the secret ingredient for successful e-commerce is offering a great customer experience. It’s high time brands build a customer-centric strategy that strengthens the bond between brand and consumer through a great user experience.
A great customer-centric e-commerce strategy is both practical for shopping and engaging customers at the same time.
Retail E-commerce Sales Growth Worldwide
In 2020, the global in-store retail channel generated 18.5 trillion US dollars in sales. Total retail sales worldwide reached around 22.5 trillion US dollars in the same year. It is predicted that the value of e-commerce retail sales will amount up to 6.5 trillion US dollars in 2024 worldwide.
Consumer Behavior Reshaping the Future of Retail
Consumer behavior is shifting at a great pace since the lockdowns are prevailing in every part of the world.
Consumers prefer to shop those items from online stores that they had not done in a pre-pandemic state. There are certain things that customers feel comfortable buying from physical stores, most probably because they want to try before they buy. However, COVID-19 has limited consumers to their homes, and they are bound to from online stores.
This situation can be regarded as a blessing in curse for digital retail industry. The buying preferences and behaviors are not going to last as soon as the pandemic gets over. Customers have built a comfort-zone buying thing online that they used to buy in-store earlier.
Moreover, the pandemic has created a desire for immediacy and convenience among customers. This leads customers to continue shopping online even when the pandemic is over.
In this scenario, retailers and digital e-commerce business owners must adapt to the latest technology trends in the digital retail industry to combat the ongoing market conditions and lead the competition in the market. Enabling AR and VR technology in digital shopping solutions can enhance users’ shopping experience and increase revenue. Retailers can benefit from the following research about user behavior and implement these drivers of online shopping into their stores.
Drivers of Online Purchases
According to a report by Statista, the following elements drive consumers in the US to buy from online stores. Here you go!
- Direct Delivery to the home 63%
- Cheaper Prices 57%
- Convenience 54%
- Round the Clock Availability 50%
- Greater Product Range 47%
- Ability to Compare 43%
- More Product Information 38%
What should Online Retailers Do to Meet the Latest Market Needs?
They must look for ways to reinvent traditional shopping practices into a creative digital experience for post-pandemic times. When the pandemic is over, potential customers are expected to stick to digital opportunities for improved safety, security, and experience. In a world where competition has surrounded you far and wide, you must offer a great customer experience so that you become the focus of your customers.
- Focus on providing a unique digital experience intended to make users’ life easier, simpler, and better.
- Make it fast and convenient to buy from your store both in-store and online.
- Upgrade your checkout experience and make it quick and seamless interactions for your customers.
- Offer a one-tap checkout feature for your regular customers by storing necessary information, including payment and delivery details.
Customer Experience Becomes an Imperative
All of the online efforts are to acquire customers’ attention. Customers are engaged when they find something valuable. The value can be different for different customers. However, every customer wants a hassle-free and convenient experience. Thus, the competition has moved from having an online store to offering value and a great customer experience. Where customers find value and a seamless shopping experience, they make a move in the same direction. In short, customer experience has become imperative in the online market.
Retailers should make sure that they take a proactive approach in selling by providing their customers even before they ask. Whether they ask for a product in-store or online, online retailers can offer both an online and in-store option to complement the shopping journey.
Here is what you can do to provide a remarkable customer experience.
Prioritize Mobile Shopping Experience
The number of smartphone users are continually increasing. Today, most of the internet traffic comes from mobile. Therefore, it is essential to cater to mobile users and offer a convenient shopping experience on mobile devices.
E-commerce and web app development companies must ensure a seamless mobile experience on online retail stores. This includes assurance of convenient navigation, categorization, easy selection, usability, and seamless checkout throughout the shopping journey. Offering your customers a hassle-free experience will make them come and shop again from your store without them feeling worried or conscious about their purchase. Make sure they don’t face any glitches and stoppages during their shopping journey as it might affect their shopping experience and deviate them from the buying decision.
Make Your Website Mobile-Optimized
As we mentioned that a vast number of online shoppers use smartphones, it’s essential to meet modern customers’ needs and make your e-commerce platform mobile-optimized. It also impacts the ranking of your e-commerce store on search engines.
Hence make sure your visitors can easily read the text, see images clearly, and navigate seamlessly on those mini-screens. If they couldn’t do so, they might get frustrated and leave the website without turning into your customers.
If you want to transform your store and unlock the future of retail with new digital experiences, get in touch with AppVerticals and start making a difference.