What are the Advantages of E-Commerce?

By Cesar Beltran

Much of the press in recent years has been reporting that consumers are shifting their spending habits online – translating their traditional commerce in shopping centers and malls into e-commerce on the world wide web.

It would be wrong to assume that retailers are reacting to this trend. In actual fact, this trend is driven by retailers who’re aware of the many benefits of e-commerce for business, reducing overheads and increasing profits as a result. This article presents the multiple benefits of having your own online store – or relocating your physical one into the virtual world of commerce. In brief, the benefits include:

  • Greater access to markets
  • A huge decrease in overheads
  • Better-equipped to run deals and promotions
  • Better able to provide product information
  • Open and trading non-stop
  • Aligns with digital marketing techniques
  • Consumers find the product they’re looking for faster

Access New Markets

A huge challenge for retailers until the advent of the internet was how exactly to access new markets, demographics, and customers who’d ordinarily never pass by and walk into their physical store. 

Naturally, online stores operate beyond the limitations put in place by location – they’re cross-border and accessible from any smartphone, tablet or computer. With the advent of cheap and efficient international shipping and payments, you can sell your products or services worldwide through e-commerce sites – an incredible advantage over traditional commerce.

Far Lower Overheads

It’s incredible to consider if you’re just setting up your first e-commerce site, the level of time and cash investment you’d need to apply to open a physical store. Not only that: the overheads remain there, in terms of rent, staff wages, bills and other accumulated costs. Nearly all of these are entirely wiped out when you sell online.

Of course, you will still likely have staff, and a warehouse of you’re selling goods – but it’s a far cry cheaper than maintaining a store in expensive rental areas. You’ll encounter your own digital costs– like those paid to your partners in payments processing and web design – but they’re incredibly low, compared to physical stores. Shopify experts can help you keep costs low when setting up an e-commerce store so that you get to enjoy the highest ROI possible when you begin trading.

Easier to Run Deals

Everyone’s seen those dazzling red posters in storefronts claiming a certain percentage off the marked price of items sold within. The truth is that these promotions are selective of those products it makes sense to discount – and the consumer can be left feeling a little hoodwinked on finding this out.

Online, it’s far easier to run promotions on specific items – even grouping them together in a ‘sales’ category. More than that, you can reward repeat customers with money-off codes, or send these same codes to your existing email base to entice them back to your store. It’s in that sense that e-commerce platforms are so successful in customer retention – a huge benefit for the retail industry if it’s done right. Again, find a Shopify website developer to help you start issuing promotions and deals.

Information Provision

Sometime before e-commerce really kicked off – especially in the realm of fashion and lifestyle goods – retail experts were confident that consumers would always favor shopping in a physical store, where they get to feel and try on outfits or get a feel for other lifestyle items. Their predictions were wrong – and that’s because the internet can support a whole host of information to help consumers make up their minds and part with their cash.

The better your web design, the more you’ll be able to do to sell your products or services. Multimedia content helps give consumers different perspectives on your product. Product specification listings (sizes, measurements, colors, etc.) are actually far easier to deliver online than in-store. The effect is more sales online, and increased consumer confidence in the quality of what you’re selling.

Open Around the Clock, Around the World

Let’s say your average physical store is open from 9am to 6pm. That’s a 9-hour trading window – in a 24-hour day. It’s not the most efficient way of going about retail – but until the rise of e-commerce is was accepted as a kind of global standard.

Fast-forward into the present day, where e-commerce continues to steadily rise in profitability and popularity, and the ability to keep a store open for 24 hours seems a huge advantage – and of course, it is. Not only that, but you’ll be in peak trading hours somewhere in the world at all times, which means that the more successful your store, the more revenue you’ll be generating around the clock, and around the world.

Marketing and Targeting

Online marketing is experiencing the same kind of rise as e-commerce, and that’s because it’s also a good deal more efficient than its physical-world predecessors. Nowadays, you can target the specific web profile of an internet user who’s most likely to be interested in your products, through programmatic marketing. 

Moreover, you can use cookies and other data-collection methods to know your customers better, which will help in your future marketing campaigns. So, while you’re trading at all hours to all locations, you’re also simultaneously able to target those international demographics that are most likely to engage with your brand.

Eases Consumer Searches

Search engines provide e-commerce businesses with the perfect platform for consumers to find their ideal products. Where in the past, someone looking for a specific antique chair might have to spend days on end in search, the same product can be found online in a matter of seconds.

Such is the power of Google searches – and you will be able to make the most of this capability by partnering with Shopifyexpertswho are on hand to drive your search engine optimization so that consumers actively looking for your products or services are guided neatly to your page.

Sit Back and Watch the Trading

With so many benefits to e-commerce trading, it’s no surprise that virtually every retailer has moved online, with many closing their physical stores. With a designated website up and running, you need merely sit back and see an increase in traffic and sales through your own profitable corner of the internet.

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Once again, thank you for keeping up to date with our Insider Blog @ Blackbelt Commerce. Be sure to check out our portfolio and our other great services.

Furthermore, we also have other terrific blog articles such as Which are the Best E-Commerce Website Designs? and Which Social Media Network is Right for Your Brand?. — We are Blackbelt Commerce, a TOP Shopify & BigCommerce developer.

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