Top 10 eCommerce Myths & Facts
Whether you’re just starting or already in the middle of operations, people will share a lot of their opinions about eCommerce with you. Or maybe you, yourself, have some ideas as to how an online retail business is run. However, the chances are that most of them are wrong. But don’t worry, we’re here to help and guide you through.
Let’s take a look at some of the myths and misconceptions about eCommerce! We’ll explain why you should not be paying any attention to them.
Myth #1: eCommerce is easy
A majority of people seem to think that it’s pretty straightforward to operate an online retail business. You open up an online store, then the customers just rush in, right? Well, no. To reference the famous words of Tolkien, one does not simply start an eCommerce business.
There’re so many things to consider and take care of! Just to name a few, you need to think of your supplier(s), logistics, delivery options, payment options, taxes, technical issues that might arise during any of these activities, etc.
Another essential to consider is what you will be selling. In what colour options? Will you have more than one model of one product? Who are your target customers? What about segmentation? How will you market your products/services to them?
Most probably, there’re even more things to consider when starting an eCommerce business. But you don’t need to be discouraged by this list. You simply need to clear your head and draw a road map for your business. Start with a simple to-do list and add more details to it as you go along. Find people who know what they’re doing to help you along the way. Remember, nothing in life is ever easy. You just need a good plan!
Myth #2: My focus should be on selling globally from day one
Enthusiasm is good and appreciated, but you also need to be clever. One of the many benefits of eCommerce indeed is that your products/services can be marketed to any part of the world. But it’s probably best to focus on and gain experience in the local market in the beginning. You can choose to evaluate your options for new markets after you’ve established yourself locally. Plus, local SEO is a lot easier to attain!
Myth #3: Product photographs are not important
We can’t stress this enough: Visuals are vital. It’s only natural for your customers to want to see how a product looks from different angles. For example, if it’s a piece of clothing, they’ll want to see it on a model. Nowadays, using videos to showcase your products is expected as well. In fact, ASOS has taken this one step further by showing clothes on models of different heights and sizes.
Myth #4: Personalisation is unnecessary
Every customer has different shopping preferences and habits. If you want customer loyalty, you need to recognise these differences and offer a catered experience.
eCommerce is a highly competitive industry. Therefore, understanding your customers’ needs and offering them an online experience accordingly is crucial. That’s how you make a difference. Using real-time analytics and personalisation together increases customer satisfaction and leads to more sales, which, in turn, increase conversion rates! Personalisation affects the decision-making process of consumers by 86%! Segmentify Personalised Recommendations analyses the past behaviour and preferences of the visitors on your website to match them with the right products by using the most intelligent machine learning technology.
Myth #5: Email marketing is useless
Everyone is all about social media marketing today, but that doesn’t mean that email is dead. On the contrary, you can’t go wrong with a classic! Email marketing is still one of the most effective ways of communicating with your customers. Think about it: There’s no algorithm deciding whether your post is worthy of showing up at the top of someone’s timeline. Plus, it gives room for personalised and targeted emails! Just make sure you don’t abuse emails and send too many at too close intervals.
Myth #6: The only metric I should track is revenue
You’re doing a business to make profits, but revenue should not be the only metric you care about. There are other important metrics to track: conversion rate, bounce rate, churn rate, etc. They can tell you so much about what’s right and what needs improvement on your website! These metrics are essential to understand whether your marketing efforts are effective or not.
Myth #7: The only way to sell more is to lower the prices
Prices are important, but they are not the only thing that customers care about. They care about your website design and whether it’s easy to navigate, quality of your products, reviews and your reliability, etc.
If your product is truly unique, why would you sell it below its true value? Plus, consumers are willing to pay more for products/services that they deem more valuable. We, humans, love to think that we’re unique and special. Therefore, we believe we deserve the most unique and exclusive product and treatment. If a product offers physical, logical, and emotional benefits, its perceived value will be higher. As a result, the customer will be willing to pay more for it.
Myth #8: I’m already making sales, so I don’t need to change anything
Technology changes fast. Trends change even faster. What people rush to buy this month will be different next month. If you wish to attain new customers and keep those you already have, you need to listen to them and find out their pain points.
However, it’s not just about the problems online shoppers might have. The old saying “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” doesn’t work in eCommerce. Instead, always be on the lookout for how you can improve certain aspects of your business: How can you offer your customers a smoother online experience? Do you need a different and better shopping cart? Are there new payment methods that you should provide? What are your competitors doing?
Be one step ahead of everyone else!
Myth #9: I just need to open the online store, and the customers will come
How will they find your store though? How will they know about your products? This is one of the biggest misconceptions about eCommerce. It’s seldom understood how difficult it is to appear on search engines. There are probably hundreds or maybe thousands of online retail businesses like yours on the Internet, each of them having the same goal: Appear at the top of the list on a Google search.
Therefore, you need help from professionals who understand SEO practices. However, beware that SEO algorithms change constantly! You will have to monitor these changes and adjust your SEO strategies accordingly constantly. SEO is not a one-time play. It’s a marketing tool that needs constant attention.
Myth #10: Packaging is not important
We’ve already mentioned once that visuals are critical. Packaging is a part of that as well. It doesn’t have to be anything too fancy. However, customers always appreciate something that shows you care and that you’ve put thought into. Maybe they’ll share a picture on Instagram, and someone will get curious and check out your website!
Plus, it’s not just about visuals! Consumers are becoming more and more environmentally conscious. They don’t want plastic packaging. They are also willing to wait a bit longer for multiple products to be collected and sent within the same package to lower their carbon footprint.
Don’t let eCommerce myths mislead you
Launching and leading an eCommerce business may seem confusing at times. Don’t let these eCommerce myths and misconceptions mislead you. The most important thing to do is research. Consult with professionals who can offer valuable advice. Don’t follow the opinions of others blindly.