The eCommerce industry continues to grow at an astonishing rate, however, this advancement has been accompanied by a few significant milestones. Many online business owners are faced with different eCommerce challenges to solve and are constantly grappling with emerging technologies, all in a bid to remain competitive in the ever-evolving online market.
Therefore as an eCommerce business owner, the obstacles you might have to scale through will most assuredly be different from regular shop owners. To help prepare you for the versatile online business market, we compiled a list of some of the major eCommerce problems and their respective solutions.
Top 10 eCommerce Challenges and Solutions
1. Technological Advancement
Adapting to technological advancements can be quite difficult for entrepreneurs, making it one of the toughest eCommerce website challenges.
This is mostly because many entrepreneurs tend to become accustomed to traditional marketing methods and refuse to embrace change which is crucial for their long-term survival.
An open-minded approach is all that’s needed to tackle this problem. What you need to do is consider what your e-commerce business stands to gain from the upgrade and whether or not it’s worth your money and effort.
Naturally, change is accompanied by pros and cons, therefore it’s in your best interest to weigh out both elements critically before making a decision.
2. Formulating Growth Strategies for Online Businesses
Devising a success-driven strategy is also high on the list of e-commerce challenges many businesses are struggling with. It’s difficult enough to identify areas of growth. Moreso, figuring out the right tactic that would give your business an edge over its competition can be more challenging.
If you have a small business, you’re going to have to put in twice the effort when creating a business model and managing daily operations.
The easiest way to handle this issue is by becoming a part of any notable marketing forum. A good place to find the answers you need is Reddit or Quora.
In these informative platforms, you’ll come across tons of eye-opening content and information about what other online business owners are doing and what business strategy they found to be most efficient.
3. High Customer Expectations
Being able to meet up with what customers expect is an extremely difficult aspect of running eCommerce companies. As your business website gains recognition, it becomes even more important for you to evaluate the needs of your customers and optimize the user experience.
For you to stand a chance at meeting up with the rising expectations of your customers you must find out what it is exactly that draws people to your brand. Once you’re able to figure this out, channel all your efforts into doubling down on your strongest points. Also, focus on creating an omnichannel strategy that helps you serve your customers exactly where they want.
Learn how to create a customer-centric strategy for your small business to help you discover what needs to be changed and what needs to be improved to ensure maximum customer loyalty and satisfaction.
4. Stiff Competition
It’s not always easy for regular brick-and-mortar stores to stay afloat, with e-commerce companies, it is even more challenging. There are many factors at play that can have a huge influence on customer decisions such as price, supply chain operation, shipping, return and refund policy, and so on.
Acquiring and maintaining your customer base is no trivial matter when running an eCommerce business since there are countless other businesses out there offering the same kind of products you sell and constantly striving to outshine other businesses, including yours.
For instance, one of your many competitors might decide to partner up with a delivery business, which will most likely lead to an increase in their market share. This will most certainly pose a problem for your business even if your product happens to be much better than theirs or more affordable.
The solution to stiff competition is to research rigorously into your competitors’ marketing practices and the online market itself, doing this will help you develop a digital marketing strategy for your business that would be twice as effective. Also, consider Investing in promotional offers which assist in boosting brand recognition.
5. Data Capitalization for eCommerce Businesses
The integration of a company’s e-commerce marketing tactics into its hierarchical structure is non-negotiable and for this to happen the business needs to adopt data-based solutions. This is of utmost necessity for online retailers when tracking retail sales and average order value on more than one channel.
To capture and apply the data to arrive at the appropriate results, a setup is required. This will assist you in making informed and rational long-term decisions for your online business.
One method that has proven to be quite effective is by making use of a POS system that is compatible with your e-commerce platform. This allows you to analyze performance and track every single payment from multiple channels accurately.
6. Fleeting Customer Loyalty
It’s practically impossible for online retailers to thrive without building customer trust and brand loyalty. Earning and maintaining customer loyalty requires an even greater effort than what it takes to find them in the first place.
The major reason why online businesses find it difficult to gain the trust and loyalty of their customers is due to the lack of good customer service and face-to-face interaction between online shoppers and online sellers.
To retain customers a lot of time and effort is required. The first step is to eliminate any red flags that might make your customers wary about dealing with your business a second time.
Ensure that your business has great customer service, a convenient ordering process, and fast shipping. Make sure that there’s no room for error, as this is the best shot you have at building a trusting and long-lasting relationship with your ideal customers.
7. The Price and Shipping Struggle
While many online merchants consider customer experience as a priority, they do, however, frequently compete with each other on price setting and shipping costs as well. This is especially true with small e-commerce businesses since larger eCommerce brands have the luxury of offering their products at reduced prices.
For instance, titans like Walmart and Amazon typically have shipping amenities all over the country and they have warehouses at almost every point, which means all orders can easily be shipped to the nearest facility.
Therefore, the cost of distribution is way lesser than that of an average company and the orders will most likely arrive at their destination quicker.
It’s hard to stand out in a competitive market, but this doesn’t imply that there aren’t other ways of distributing inventory. You can also decide to deal in unique products that aren’t readily available to consumers elsewhere.
When running an online business, there’s no way for global eCommerce sales to go up or to ramp up your eCommerce website visits if people aren’t able to find your site. This is a major element of e-commerce that can either put your business on the map or make it obsolete.
Regardless of the quality or price of your products, if your company’s website doesn’t turn up on the first page of search results, chances are, potential customers will shop online from any of the eCommerce businesses they come across first – in other words, your competitors.
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To put your business on the radar and generate leads to your website, the best thing to do is invest in search engine optimization (SEO). You can hire a content specialist to implement on-page SEO practices, conduct thorough research on keywords and build high authority links for your eCommerce site.
If you carry out each of these steps properly, it can result in an optimized lead generation with higher search visibility for your company’s website.
9. Customers Abandoning Shopping Carts
Customers changing their minds about going through with a purchase can put a business out of commission faster than a court order of foreclosure. Even the most renowned eCommerce giants are sometimes faced with shopping cart abandonment.
The majority of customers faced with a tedious checkout process will abandon the purchase in an instant and aren’t likely to become returning customers of that particular eCommerce store.
We have created an extensive and interesting article on how to reduce the cart abandonment rate in your eCommerce store. Check that out and watch sales improve.
To keep customers from bailing on their orders and facilitate customer retention, consider redesigning your shopping cart and checking for bugs.
To boost sales, you can as well try improving your eCommerce function by using visual tools that will help guide your customers whenever they come across queries during the checkout process.
10. The Need to Overhaul Sales Tactics
A pressing issue in e-commerce is the need to adapt sales tactics to customer expectations. When it comes to understanding customer behavior and buying patterns, many companies are at a loss.
Every successful business owner realizes the importance of having some insight as to the behavioral patterns of their target market and so should you if you hope to drive up sales for your eCommerce business.
To be in the know about what your customers want, consider creating special segments for recording visitor data, as this will help you identify and communicate with each customer based on their previous purchases and browsing patterns.
What is the Most Common eCommerce Business Problem?
Some might argue that data security is the greatest eCommerce challenge small businesses encounter. eCommerce sites need to guard their confidential data at all times to prevent hackers from gaining access to sensitive information.
Try running online identity verification or install security plugins and other software solutions to protect your online store and social media platforms from intruders.
Challenging as they may be, eCommerce problems can be seen as opportunities for improvement. Always be on your toes and ready to address any of the aforementioned problems should the need arise and focus on creating a customer-centric environment and culture.
By doing so, you’ll be able to tell what makes your customers behave a certain way and know the best ways to improve their online shopping experience.
You can improve your eCommerce business sales by up to 10x today. Send Milia Marketing a message today and we will help you experience maximum growth and success in your eCommerce store.