The explosion of e-commerce businesses has seen the growth of a number of online businesses across East Africa. And Covid – 19 pandemics has also made most consumers opt with online business commerce which is considered safe and convenient compared to traditional transactions. Deniably, e-commerce enterprises offer more benefits, comparing to bricks-and-mortar traditional enterprises, but not to be missed the issues and challenges faced by the eCommerce enterprises
Today we will deep-dive into some of the common challenges faced by eCommerce businesses and the solutions to overcome them.
1. Meeting Consumers Expectations
Managing customer expectations is more critical as people or consumers are forced to shop online for a wider variety of products because of the pandemic. This is vital for increased retention and decreased return rates to retailers and if you are not upfront about price, product details, and expected delivery dates, and following through by meeting those expectations, you run the risk of losing customers to your competitors. And when there are so many new competitors entering the fray, it’s too big of a threat.
The simplest way to meet customers’ expectations is to provide browsers with full product information and sizes. This will help reduce the risk of returns or negative feedback. You want to make the shopping experience as smooth as possible while ensuring you are upfront about pricing and shipping costs, build trust, optimize your store for conversions, and go above and beyond in terms of customer service.
One of the biggest challenges retailers face with eCommerce is security breaches. There is a lot of information/data that is involved while dealing with eCommerce and a technical issue with data can cause severe damage to the retailer’s daily operations as well as brand image.
Be watchful and always back up your data. Post that, you can install security plugins onto your website to prevent it from getting hacked. There are several plugins out there, pick one that works best for your eCommerce website.
3. Shopping Cart Abandonment
Cart abandonment is a big hurdle in the path of success for businesses. It shows the percentage of buyers who have added products to the cart but left the website without making any purchase. All the resources used in driving a customer to the website are wasted as they leave the page without making a purchase.
Retailers can make use of exit-intent pop-ups, sequential mails, and convenient live chatbox services. They can also enable guest checkouts to save the users time. Retargeting ads are also a viable solution. It is a digital strategy of showcasing specific ads to the users who have performed a particular action on your website and then left without making a purchase. This will help lure them back to the website.
4. Lack of Integration
Customer support systems, dispatch systems, order tracking systems, etc. are applications that can streamline the experience of the customer across the buying journey. But if these systems are disparate it could ruin the customer experience.
Customer service solutions could integrate with multiple systems seamlessly, such as ERP systems, synchronizing available information across all systems and displaying it in a single interface.
5. Customer Retention
One of the biggest challenges facing eCommerce shops is customer retention. There’s always another online store offering some variation of what you’re selling. And again, competing with the eCommerce giants requires that you take extra steps to keep your paying customer coming back for more.
Retailers have to start with customer experience. Ensure that every part of shopping at the online store is pain-free and enjoyable. Beyond that, offering discounts, customer loyalty programs, or regular personalization integration (like emails, chatbots, saved purchases, etc.) are all great options to keep your buyers coming back.
In conclusion, E-commerce Challenges aren’t impossible to overcome. Identify the challenges and prepare to beat them. The above-mentioned solutions are fixes that can help any eCommerce business move closer to their ideal customers and targeted sales.
By Carolyne Rabut
Content Marketing – CompuLynx