Grasp the importance of the quality of online shopping experience you’re giving customers.
Know the latest social media shopping stats as this trend continues to grow.
Discover the reason behind consumers’ online shopping purchases.
Equip yourself with some practical tips for improving your customer’s online shopping experience so you can sell more and grow your customer base.
Today, online shopping takes on many forms, from shopping directly on a retailer’s website to browsing products on a retailer’s social media page. As eCommerce continues to evolve, it’s important for eStore owners to keep several things in mind to improve their brand’s visibility and impact in the context of changing consumer trends. Join us as we dive into the present state of ecommerce and how social shopping should impact how you market your products on your website and eStore.
Creating an Explorative and Playful Online Shopping Experience
In today’s dynamic eCommerce landscape, ensuring a successful transaction is just the beginning. As an eStore owner, your bigger goal should be to craft a unique shopping experience for your visitors. Reflect for a moment: How often do your customers type in general terms like “earrings”, rather than specific requests such as “gold hoop earrings by David Yurman”? This trend is a window into their desire for exploration and discovery.
By integrating interactive website features that allow your customers to customize or play, you not only enhance their engagement but also leave a lasting impression. Remember, it’s not solely about what someone purchases, but how they feel throughout their shopping adventure.
As you look to the future of your online store, recognizing and leveraging these nuanced behaviors is key. When you infuse the spirit of discovery into your platform, you’re not just selling products — you’re offering an enriching experience, setting your brand apart in an ever-competitive marketplace.
An Extension of eCommerce: Social Media Shopping
In the modern eCommerce world, online shopping has expanded to take on a variety of forms. While it’s still common for consumers to visit their favorite online store to purchase a product, it’s becoming increasingly popular to make purchases via social media. Per Statista, 96.9 million people in the U.S. shop on social media. Facebook currently dominates as the channel of choice when it comes to social media shopping. Approximately 51% of survey respondents stated that they use Facebook for online purchases, as Statista confirms.
Selling on social media offers customers a more personalized approach to online browsing and buying. It fosters interactive dialogues, allowing you to showcase products with images and directly market them to consumers. This approach has three immediate benefits to your ecommerce business: 1) It streamlines the buying process, 2) It amplifies your brand’s presence, and 3) It strengthens customer ties.
Another aspect of social shopping is that consumers can share their purchases with their networks on platforms including Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. A Shopify app called Social Share Cart is one tool that lets shoppers show off recent buys to their friends and acquaintances. Think of it as a special type of referral that helps increase your customer base simply by giving your products more visibility on social channels.
The “Why” Behind What People Buy
When it comes to eCommerce, it’s important to consider not just what people buy, but why they buy it. Purchasing is a purpose-driven behavior. That need may be deadly serious, completely frivolous, or somewhere in between.
Consumer needs fall into two main categories – low involvement and high involvement. Low involvement purchases are the sort of items people buy on auto-pilot, like a repeat DoorDash order or pet food delivery. There’s no real thought required. High involvement purchases are generally much more expensive – think electronics, fine jewelry, cars – which means website visitors spend more time delving into product details, comparing options, reading reviews, and researching.
Implications for Your eCommerce Website
So what does this mean for your eStore? Sometimes your customers want to shop, and sometimes they want to buy. Your challenge is to deliver both experiences via your online shop.
This is frankly where things fall apart for a lot of businesses. The most commonly available eCommerce platforms prioritize the buying experience over the shopping experience. That’s why you can search for a blue suit but not for “what to wear as a wedding guest”.
Smart web design means you can go beyond the traditional eCommerce experience. It’s essential to make it easy for your customers to buy. Appealing to your shoppers means bringing your merchandising expertise online. Here are some practical ways you can do that with your online shop.
- Create and use imagery with the same care you devote to in-store displays and incorporate key product information that you want customers to know about certain items. Per Google, 85% of shoppers say product information and pictures are important to them when deciding which brand or retailer to go with.
- Show off your products and explain how to use or wear them by incorporating video clips on your website.
- Take advantage of blogs and sliders to present curated collections, which are the next best thing to personal recommendations.
- Make sure your live chat feature has the capacity to connect a shopper with a knowledgeable team member for personalized shopping advice and guidance.
- Make sure your website is optimized for mobile. Per Google, 59% of shoppers say that being able to shop on mobile is important when deciding which brand or retailer to buy from. (If you’re not sure your website is responsive, it might be time to talk to the pros for a web upgrade.)
- Use AI to personalize your customers’ experiences when they shop online.
The best way to evaluate your customer’s experience on your ecommerce website is to test it out yourself. We encourage you to carve out time to shop your website. Spend time on it the way a customer would, browsing without any definite purchase plans in mind. Is it an enjoyable experience? Are you having fun? If the answer is “no,” it’s time to start thinking about how you can improve the customer experience by upgrading your website. Perhaps it’s time to expand your staff’s skillset or outsource some web tweaks to a trusted marketing firm like Technology Therapy® Group.
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