Noteworthy Advancements in eCommerce
Think you can drive traffic to your site and boost sales the instant you launch your online store? Think again. The online marketplace is flooded with eCommerce sites all biding for the attention of consumers. To gain an edge over the competition, you must stay on top of the latest trends in eCommerce and provide a top-of-the-line customer experience. Below, we explain three major eCommerce advancements that you should take advantage of to update your online store.
Online B2B Boom
One of the greatest changes in eCommerce in recent years is the surge of online business-to-business (B2B) transactions. Don’t expect this trend to slow down—Forrester projects U.S. B2B eCommerce to reach $1.8 trillion by 2023. This makes eCommerce software a must, not just for retailers, but also for manufacturers and distributors.
However, there are some special considerations you must make to leverage your online store for optimal B2B experiences. B2B transactions are far more complex than B2C, often involving multiple decision makers and different pricing models. That’s why you must select an eCommerce platform that facilitates processes unique to B2B environments.
Despite its tremendous growth, B2B eCommerce experiences still fall far behind B2C. That’s because B2B industries struggle to generate and leverage data to fuel their online performance, often because data is spread across multiple disjointed systems. A tightly integrated ERP and eCommerce platform serves as the perfect solution for eradicating data silos.
Connecting your front and back-office systems enables your site’s visitors to gain an up-to-date view of their order status, delivery dates and product availability. An integration also streamlines order processing, as your back-office system immediately receives eCommerce orders. Epicor Commerce Connect (ECC), an eCommerce solution that is fully integrated with Epicor ERP, provides a 360-degree view of your processes and customers to enhance online B2B experiences.
Personalized Customer Experiences
Whether they’re B2B buyers or individual consumers, your customers are savvier than ever. They’re not just searching for the best deal or quality; they crave personalized experiences. With a robust eCommerce solution, you can make product recommendations for different consumer groups, provide individualized pricing and offer consistency at every stage of the customer journey.
By unleashing the potential of your data, you can take your shopping experience to the next level. Take for example the online shopping cart. Cart abandonment rates remain stubbornly high at about 75%. But don’t be deterred by abandoned purchases. Instead, enable your website to keep track of shopping carts so you can alert customers via email or targeted social media advertising to complete their transactions or show related products.
Two other data points you can track include search queries and geographic location. By tracking search queries, you can recommend products to individual customers based on their keywords. Localization enables you to alter site content based on the visitor’s IP address, so you can suggest products relevant to the customer’s climate or other local features.
As technology continues to advance, other tools such as artificial intelligence (AI) and business intelligence (BI) will become critical to personalizing online customer journeys and optimizing your targeting methods. The digital landscape constantly advances to deliver more insight from your data—to keep up with the competition, you have to implement an eCommerce solution that can keep up with these trends.
Conversion Rate Optimization
A technique generating a lot of buzz in the eCommerce sphere is conversion rate optimization (CRO). CRO refers to methods of increasing the percentage of visitors who take a desired action, such as making a purchase, filling out a form or downloading collateral. Some of these methods include conducting tests, analyzing data and improving search engine optimization (SEO).
A/B testing is commonly used to test conversion methods. In A/B tests, you modify and create a second version of a web page, showing half of your traffic the original version of the page and showing the other half the altered version. Then, you compare the performance of both pages, determining if the changes improved traffic or conversions. By testing one variable at a time, you can identify which factors influence your visitors’ behavior. To conduct tests to analyze your site performance, put in place a clear methodology to ensure that time and resources are properly allocated.
In addition, thoroughly follow SEO guidelines to drive traffic and conversions. Though paying for social media and Google advertisements can boost your online presence, organic (or unpaid) traffic still accounts for the most conversions. Content marketing serves as one of the most effective methods to improve SEO.
When you provide thoughtful, relevant content, visitors are more likely to trust your authority—as well as your products. Use Google Analytics and other tools to discover the most useful keywords. Create landing pages and blog posts that center on a particular keyword, inserting it in the page URL, title, header and throughout the body of your content. Include calls to action on each page to encourage visitors to make purchases and perform other actions.
The digital marketplace never slows down, and your eCommerce system must always keep up with the latest trends. Epicor Commerce Connect offers comprehensive, user-friendly tools to help you quickly develop your online store. Built from Magento's advanced platform, ECC gives businesses the flexibility to design sites that align with their unique brand and customer needs. Plus, it's integrated with Epicor ERP or Prophet 21 to increase efficiency and improve visibility.
An Epicor Gold Partner and eCommerce expert, Datix has helped manufacturers and distributors implement reliable software solutions for over 20 years. We keep up with the latest trends and simplify software projects, so your company can leverage leading technology to optimize customer experiences and boost sales. A one-stop shop for premier solutions and services, Datix works with clients from start to finish to transform their business with software.
Don’t fall behind the latest business trends—or your competition. Get in touch with the expert consultants at Datix today!