The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically shifted day-to-day life. Instead of the traditional office environment, many businesses have opted for remote work conditions, allowing employees to complete their tasks from the comfort of their homes. In lieu of live baseball and football games, sports enthusiasts have opted to watch games from years past. Perhaps the most prevalent shift, as any digital marketing company can attest, is in how people make purchases.
Granted, there are many people that shop at traditional brick and mortar stores, as this provides them with in-person impressions on what they’d like to buy. This isn’t the case for all, though, especially for shoppers that live with elders, children, or other immunocompromised individuals. Ecommerce has been common for years, but during the past couple of months, many have relied on it as their singular means of buying essentials. As such, it behooves businesses to shift their focus toward eCommerce efforts, ensuring that their online marketplaces are not only functional but well-stocked.
This begs the question: once the COVID-19 pandemic passes, will every business have an eCommerce website? The simple answer is, and should be, yes. Even before the pandemic in question, shoppers were inclined to make their purchases online. It’s been estimated that consumers have spent roughly $602 billion with online marketplaces in the United States. Furthermore, worldwide retail sales could become as high as $5 trillion by 2021. This shift in operations benefits companies and their consumers.
There are multiple benefits to having an eCommerce website post-COVID-19. These serve to provide buyers with smoother user experiences and, just as importantly, increase sales for businesses. Here are just a few of the benefits in question that an Internet marketing company can highlight.
Search Engine Optimization
Among the various benefits of an eCommerce website, it’s safe to say that search engine optimization wouldn’t be the first that stands out. However, it’s been proven that said website can have a positive impact on how a business ranks for certain keywords. When a user searches for a specific product, the product page of an eCommerce website can appear. From there, the user will click on the link, finding the information they need before determining whether to make a purchase. This is one of the many areas where an SEO agency can prove advantageous, boosting rankings for the companies that partner with them.
If a user has an idea of what they’d like to purchase, but would like more insight, an eCommerce website can help. Product information provides users with additional details that they may not find in a traditional retail setting. Everything from the product’s dimensions to compatible devices can be found on a product page. Further information comes in the form of user reviews that companies allow buyers to share. This will instill confidence in future buyers, as they know what they buy will not only perform as advertised but hold up over time.
Another reason why an eCommerce website should be prioritized is the consumer data it provides. This type of website will allow a business to monitor how consumers behave. Which products are they most likely to buy? Do consumers spend under a certain amount? Are they using coupon or promotional codes that have been offered via social media and other outlets? How likely are consumers to engage in shopping cart abandonment, placing items in their carts before ignoring them completely? These are just a few examples of key consumer data that, more than anything else, help businesses improve their eCommerce efforts.
While it may go without saying, eCommerce websites are always open for business. As opposed to most of traditional retail, and barring any technological downtime, eCommerce is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. This is especially useful when focusing on users with unique buying patterns. For example, the idea of purchasing a new nozzle for their garden hose may not strike a buyer until eleven o’clock at night. They can click onto a website and make the purchase, ensuring that it reaches their home within a few business days. The benefit of open operating hours, from an eCommerce standpoint, extends to companies and consumers alike.
Perhaps the most notable benefit that eCommerce websites offer is the inherent flexibility associated with them. A business owner may work from their office, whether at or away from home, but what if they’re constantly on the move? It wouldn’t unfathomable for them to stop at a coffee shop, open their laptop, and maintain their eCommerce website from there. The same can be said if they’re on a business trip and decide to check in from their hotel room. This level of flexibility offers peace of mind and additional ways for business owners to keep tabs on their eCommerce platforms.
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