E-commerce is the process of buying and selling goods and services online, and then processing the payments via the web.
The benefit of e-commerce is that it provides access to a broad customer base of web users and shoppers all over the world who are willing to purchase goods from your online store. A profitable e-commerce business will comprise of brilliant customer service and excellent sales facilities.
Trust is extremely important when it comes to delivering a quality online shopping experience. If customers find your website a challenge to use or your site provides a poor experience, their visits are unlikely to be converted into sales. A trustworthy website is one that is accompanied by good customer service and a simple sales process.
The web is the new high street
Your website is your new storefront. A successful online store is functional, easy to navigate, quick-loading, professional and complete (with no missing pages). If your website is difficult to navigate, has many “under construction” pages, or has a payment gateway that doesn’t function properly, your competitors will immediately benefit from your lost sales.
It is also a good idea to invest in a web developer instead of using a free template. A developer can ensure your website will meet all of the aforementioned requirements and ensure you capitalise on online conversions.
Quality customer service
Ever thought about what makes good customer service?
Some of the biggest websites are the easiest to use and, after a customer has made a purchase, allow the customer to track goods, talk to a sales person, ask a question and even leave a review. All of these features contribute to a customer’s peace of mind and a satisfactory shopping experience.
How do you ensure good quality customer service?
Your website should show up-to-date and complete contact information in easy-to-spot places. At the very minimum, you should provide an email address and phone number. Very successful e-commerce websites provide live web chats, free telephone support and the knowledge that someone will be available very quickly if anything goes wrong.
Don’t let your customers forget you
Customer Relationship Management is a very important consideration in the e-commerce industry—especially for small businesses that are trying to create a large customer base.
CRM can help you develop innovative ways to inform customers about new products by providing valuable data, so that you offer customers useful information without littering their inbox with what could look like spam.
Your e-commerce site should support the incorporation of CRM tools and solutions, and support various methods of outbound communication, both with your existing customers and new customers.
Make your website trustworthy
One of the most effective ways to make your e-commerce site trustworthy is by making the payment gateway as reliable as possible. Putting your online customers at ease with a professional, reliable and secure service will ensure that they’ll return again and again.
It is essential that your web host has an SSL Certificate before credit card information is transferred online to your merchant account. An SSL Certificate creates an encrypted connection between a client and web host to ensure that no-one else can decrypt an intercepted transaction.
As an alternative to using an SSL Certificate on your e-commerce site, you can use other types of payment gateways, such as PayPal, Internet secure and authorize.net to provide a safe payment process for your customers.