Don’t Make These Four Mistakes

Setting up an online store may seem easy, considering there are fewer barriers to entry than traditional retail: no store footprint to lease or buy, no retail staff to hire and pay, no utilities to owe, and no set hours to operate. But with fewer barriers comes greater competition, and an underprepared ecommerce retailer does not last long in today’s market! With that in mind, we’ll share four major mistakes that many failed ecommerce merchants have made with the hopes that you won’t make the same ones!

Not Embracing M-Commerce

Mobile is the most popular way to shop, beating out desktop computers a few years ago. In fact, shoppers use their smartphones to compare and research while shopping in-store, serving as an excellent entry point for an online retailer to steal a customer from a brick-and-mortar competitor. If your ecommerce site doesn’t have a mobile-optimized version compatible with smartphones, you’re missing out on a lot of potential sales. Some might still shop with you, but if it’s easier to click to another site or buy the product sitting in from of them on the shelf, many customers will take the easy route.

Failing To Train Your Customer Service Team

The contact center is often the one point of human contact your customer has with your business. Your staff, whether outsourced or in-house, needs to know everything about your operations and your products inside and out. They need access to more information about your products and know where to look for it. Your team should be trained in problem resolution and be empowered to handle angry customers without needing to escalate every situation. They also need to speak in your “brand voice,” keeping everything they say in line with the tone, vocabulary, and promises you make on your ecommerce site. Long wait times on the phone, transferring calls incessantly from one department to another, and slow response times are indicators of an ill-trained contact center. You’ll never stop improving if you view your customer service staff as the gateway to real conversations with your customers!

Not Setting KPIs

It’s not enough to sell your inventory – you need to know what’s going on inside your warehouse and your contact center, how you’re executing, and where your strengths and weaknesses lie. The only way you can truly gauge your performance is to set up some KPIs (key performance indicators) and measure against them. It is a quantifiable point to check whether you are reaching your goals. Select a few data points- specific indicators which impact your business, not just arbitrary tasks that don’t mean anything – and use those KPIs to track growth and improvement. If they decline, you can identify methods to counteract it before the problem gets too big to handle.

If You Build It, They Will Come

A great store with good products, beautiful photography, speedy fulfillment, and a responsive contact center is not enough. You’ll never get a sale if customers can’t find you!! Building a great site is just the beginning, but getting the word out and marketing your brand where your potential customers are is one of the most crucial points in ecommerce. Set up social media presences that make sense, create an enticing email marketing program that encourages customers to sign up, and identify paid advertising opportunities such as search ads, social ads, and influencer partnerships that will get you in front of buyers. If you don’t, you’ll waste your time – and money!