This is a guest blog post from Whistl.
We all know how the power of the internet and growth of technology has enabled businesses to reach a wider audience instantaneously, however with this continuous growth, businesses must work harder to stay up to date with the latest technology.
Communication is key to reaching your target audience, whether it’s through direct mail, email, online or social media channels, as these all keep you in the forefront of your audience’s minds.
The advancements in technology has meant that communication is now much more accessible for many people, but without a strong online presence and strategy you could be at risk of losing out on potential buyers.
Consumers across the globe shop online for many different reasons, but as stated in PwC's Total Retail Survey, the two main influencers for buying online are convenience and price.
With convenience being the slightly bigger influencer of the two, it clearly shows that there is more to value than price. With this in mind, your customer's online shopping experience, from purchase to delivery, should be a key focus in your business's online strategy.
If they cannot navigate around your site on any device without ease, then why would they want to shop with you? Making their experience more pleasurable means there is more chance of repeat orders in the future.
So, what should you implement into your online strategy? There are three key stages, and here are the ways you can prevent losing out:
1. Under-performing online store
Broken links, untidy pages, messy layout and incorrect information (stock counts and price) will prevent people from completing a purchase.
Ensure you have the most robust intuitive online platform for your audience, whether it is managed internally or externally, it is your shop window to encourage visitors.
2. Difficult ordering process
Long-winded processes and requests for unnecessary information puts customers off submitting their details and committing to that purchase.
For this reason, ensure you are only collecting mandatory payment and delivery address details.
When they come into your shop, it's a case of taking the item to the till and paying for it - easy. With online purchases, information is required in order to proceed, but that doesn't mean this should be long and unnecessary. The quicker the process, the happier the consumer.
Just as the customer-facing ordering process needs to be simple and streamlined, so too should your backend order fulfilment. The faster and more accurate that you can shop your orders, the happier your customers will be. It's a win-win.
Unreasonable delivery costs and time, as well as poor quality and destination unavailability, can mean that your customers won't return to you again.
If they have had to pay for their items to be delivered within an expected time frame and it arrives late in a poor state, will result in you ruining your customer's final experience of the process.
Social media has means that the voice of the consumer is louder. That, coupled with their thirst for information, means that a good delivery experience starts before the parcel arrives at their door. Being informed of this progress is imperative, and working with a reputable delivery partner can ensure you are providing the best options to your customers.
At Whistl, we understand the importance of providing a successful customer experience.
A strong online interface for your customers and an efficient delivery service can encourage repeat business. By integrating with your inventory and order management system, as well as arranging fulfilment and managing your deliveries in the UK or abroad, our despatch manager and tracked services allows you to choose your item destination, delivery time and carrier, all in one easy solution.