The COVID-19 pandemic has stirred the economic market, forced businesses to shut down, and companies to review their operations. Even though these are dark times for businesses, the silver lining seems to be shining brightly for e-commerce.
With people stuck in their homes and cautious about going out, online retail stores are now the new shopping malls for both basic and luxury items. It could be the opportunity you’ve been waiting for. The question is, are you prepared to take advantage of the situation and get a jump on your competitors? Here are a few tips that can get you to the top.
1.Update Your Website
Everything at the moment is touch and go. Customers are jittery, and businesses are unstable. Your priority is providing customers with vital information about the current state of your business.
Updating your website to make it easier for customers to find clear, concise, and real-time information, such as whether your store is open, and if there are any changes to your delivery system, brings you that much closer to earning their trust and completing the sale.
There are several ways to provide such valuable information on your website. You can use dedicated pages or FAQs that clients can quickly and conveniently peruse.
You can also use your website to provide safety advice as well as the latest government directives on self-isolation and social distancing as well as pass on tips to first-time online shoppers and how to make the most out of the experience.
2.Optimize Mobile Website
According to a Global Web Index study, between March 16 and March 20, 2020, 70% of users access the internet using a smartphone while Gen Z make up 80% of smartphone users. Since the number of smartphone users is high, building a responsive and mobile-friendly website is both practical and strategic. Below are a few tips to consider to ensure you provide your customers with an excellent mobile browsing experience:
Slim down bulky headings and images and remove non-essential content, especially in the prime areas.
Place the most important Call-to-Action within the ‘thumb zone,’ for your user, making it easy to reach and more clickable.
Pin elements like the search bar and the ‘add to cart’ functionalities to the top of the mobile browser to make shopping much easier and dramatically improve sales.
3.Leverage Social Media to Build Engagement
It’s almost impossible to fathom running an online retail business without leveraging the benefits of social media. Right now is the best time to bring your community of followers together. Engaging on social media is a great way to keep your brand lingering in many minds with the promise of delivering value to your customers.
There are tons of ways you can boost engagement on social media. You can share recipes, or perform a live showcase with your new product lineup. Even asking your followers how they are doing or posting challenges can have a significant effect on your brand.
4. Consider Working with a 3PL Fulfillment Partner.
Despite the pandemic turning the world on its head, your online store can come out on top if you make the right choices and partner with the right people, one of them being a 3PL partner. Outsourcing your logistics and warehousing provides several important benefits:
Flexibility and scalability – Setting up your own logistics division can be expensive. It can also lock down capital that you could use to expand and grow the business rapidly. With a logistics partner, you have the flexibility to start small and scale up as demand, and your customer base grows without making a substantial investment in warehouses and shipping.
Efficiency and specialization – You can leverage your logistics partner’s experience and infrastructure to reduce the cost of shipping while you focus on marketing and sales.
Your logistics partner can give you access to “best in class” strategies for your industry based on their experience in the industry.
Common Services Offered by Logistics Partners:
Supply chain management –You need an efficient supply chain to propel your e-commerce business. Your partner can help you streamline your inbound freight deliveries so they are handled efficiently and effectively.
Warehousing –A good 3PL company will invest in space and technology to run the warehouse efficiently. Despite the state-of-the-art systems and technology, the service is cost-efficient because the operating costs are spread across multiple clients.
Consolidation — You can save money on the consolidation service because of lower shipping charges. This could mean higher profits for your business or better prices for your customers or both.
Order fulfillment — The responsibility of a third party logistics company is not complete until the orders are fulfilled. The deliveries should not only be timely but accurate. The right goods must reach the right customers on time.
Returns Processing –Returns processing is just as crucial as sales. Returns can frustrate customers and damage your online brand credibility. With a reliable partner, you can make the returns just as easy and smooth as the sales.
When you need to focus on growing your business and reaching out to new potential customers, the 3PL company will be behind the scenes and help you honor your promise for a flawless customer experience.
5. Change Your Subscription Model
Since Covid-19 came into play, user behaviors have changed drastically. This is the perfect opportunity to switch things up a bit and show new users the benefit of your application or online store.
Some subscription changes you make can include free shipping for first-time buyers, discount codes, free trials, and samples as well as free goodies for successful purchases.
By rethinking your subscription model, you can entice a new set of users who’ve become comfortable with online shopping but are skeptical about going all the way. The goal is to earn your customers’ trust and then make them purchase.
While other businesses face tough times, this could be the defining moment for your e-commerce business. But, it will depend on the changes and improvements you make to your business.
While you work on the storefront, you need a professional 3PL company to manage your supply chain and deliver on to the promises you make to your customers. Today, you can contact Symbia’s team of warehousing experts to enhance your business processes and deliver on what you’re good at.