E-Commerce consumers have higher expectations than those that are shopping at a brick-and-mortar location. They expect fast and easy shopping experiences with no issues. Since there are so many e-commerce sites in today’s world, it could potentially take one minor issue to send a potential customer right into your competitor’s hands.
Avoiding some of the most common e-commerce pain points for both your business and for your current and future customers is a great way to differentiate you from your competition. Educating yourself on some of the common mistakes that other sellers make can be the difference between maximizing your sales and scaling your business up, or losing potential revenue.
What are the Most Common E-commerce Pain Points
Being on the Wrong Platform
Opening an e-commerce store on a marketplace or seller platform is relatively inexpensive and can create a boundless potential for sales and ROI. Of course, you will want to save money wherever you can when you are first starting out, but choosing a lower-cost platform will be your first mistake. Typically, the less expensive platforms tend to be limited in terms of promotion, support, and opportunities to scale up. You are going to want a platform that can grow with your business and that will work for your needs long term while offering your potential customers the best possible sales experience from start to finish.
Relying on a platform that cannot support your growth, in the hopes that a lower overhead will translate to larger profits, will backfire. This will result in slower processing, possible delayed shipping, and will most likely make a frustrating customer experience even worse. These sites can also deliver e-commerce pain points by handling a larger number of SKUs added to the catalog, adding new forms of content such as videos, or keeping up with shipping needs on the logistics and fulfillment side of things.
This will negatively impact your seller rating, as well as get you a large number of negative customer reviews, which affects your visibility on the site. If you want your customers to have the best experience possible, the platform is the best place to start investing. Especially today, with online sales being up 45% from a pre-covid world, there is a lot of competition.
Considering that Asia-Pacific has forecasted an e-commerce growth of USD 2.27 trillion this year, it’s important to get this right. This region also makes up more than 60% of e-commerce spending worldwide. While some of the most popular sites in Asia-Pacific do come with significant fees (storage fees, monthly fees, postage fees, etc…) it’s important to know that they’re worth the cost, especially if you’re relying on a trusted marketplace such as Lazada, Shopee, and Shopify.
Each site has its own benefits and drawbacks, so it is important to do your research beforehand. For instance, Shopee has over 4 million users, which could be an incentive for a partnership to some but you must also take into consideration their 2% (+VAT) commission fee. It all comes down to your businesses’ priorities and long-term goals for the E-Commerce site. In order to make sure you are choosing the right platform, ask yourself a few key questions before getting started:
- How big is your company?
- What are your plans for growth?
- What are your shipping and fulfillment requirements?
- How involved will you be with the development of the site and future modifications?
Negative Customer Experience
In today’s social media-driven world it is impossible not to be influenced by others’ opinions and reviews. Whether it is a blog post, TikTok video, Instagram post, or YouTube video we are constantly bombarded with information about various products and services. On a global average, users spend 2+ hours on social media per day. In the Asia Pacific, there are some of the most active social media users in the world, spending over 10 hours a day online. This is why creating a positive customer experience and leveraging your social media is one of the best tactics for free marketing.
Customers want to feel that they can trust you and that their concerns are being addressed promptly and respectfully. They are also much more likely to post complaints online when things don’t go the way they planned. If you are hard to reach or do not uphold promises stated on your site, the customer will take to social media to get your attention.
More often than not, customers will not be upset about a shipping delay or a mistake with their order as long as it is addressed quickly. It is when these issues take time and effort from the customer to get resolved that negative feelings towards the business arise. Once they feel like they are not being respected as a consumer they will want to share their experience and warn others.
In order to avoid facing this e-commerce pain point by having negative feedback about your business and deterring potential customers from using your site, make sure your customer service is top-notch.
Some services/actions to consider:
- 24/7 support.
- An easy to navigate website with quick and intuitive checkout options.
- Free returns.
- Direct messaging with customer service representatives.
- Having a phone number listed on your site.
- Discount codes or other perks.
- Responding to all reviews and messages on social media.
Lacking Real-Time Visibility
Having greater shipping flexibility and easy return options are a large incentive to consumers. However, 84% of e-commerce sellers cannot provide these services because they do not have real-time visibility of their inventory and other key performance indicators (KPI). Having more extensive analytical capabilities will benefit your business in a variety of ways and help you manage this e-commerce pain point.
However, analytical software can be overwhelming to those that aren’t especially tech-savvy. Luckily, there are companies that can create an easy-to-use dashboard for your site that shows everything you need to know to avoid this e-commerce pain point. LOCAD’s Control Tower Dashboard shows your inventory levels, stock movements, analytics, and other KPI’s so you are always up to date on what products need to be re-ordered or cycled out.
Having Expensive Shipping Fees
The cart conversion rate is the most important aspect of an e-commerce website’s analytics. This is the percentage of people that are actually going through with the sale and not just browsing the site. Typically, when a consumer gets to the last stage of the buying process they stop the sale because of expensive shipping rates and fees.
It is important to be upfront about shipping costs from the beginning of the buyer’s journey so they are not surprised when they go to check out. Today, customers are expecting free shipping because that is what they see on large shopping platforms like Amazon and Alibaba. If that is not feasible for your business, be transparent about shipping costs. Also, always try to have free shipping over a certain price threshold.
One way to shorten delivery times, bring down shipping costs, and simplify your inventory management is by integrating your sales channels with a fulfillment partner that understands that you might be selling across multi-channel, and need support and insight into best practices and customer-friendly shipping rates.
LOCAD, for example, can help you sell across multiple channels from one consolidated inventory pool, across a localized fulfillment network, with partner shipping rates that we’ve negotiated. By running a distribution fulfillment network we can bring your stock closer to your customers. Shortening the last mile creates the opportunity for cheaper shipping costs and faster delivery times.
Avoid E-commerce Pain Points With LOCAD
Managing so many aspects of your e-commerce business can be challenging, but we are here to help. LOCAD offers a supply chain platform as a service for multi-channel fulfillment, on-demand warehousing, and distribution. Our product is an easy-to-use technology platform to manage your infrastructure and help mitigate some of your greatest e-commerce pain points.
We work across all aspects of your business in order to assess and consolidate inventory so that you have access to everything in real-time; sales, inventory, and KPIs. As well, we offer a robust on-demand fulfillment network, you can expand or reduce your business with seasonality, growth, or a restructuring of your key business.
Let us help you achieve your most profitable and effective business, and take away some of the more stressful elements. After years of experience with e-commerce sellers, entrepreneurs, and Enterprise level clients, we have developed a highly scalable, easy-to-use solution for your business needs. We also offer:
- Supply and Demand Planning.
- LOCAD’s Control Tower Dashboard for real-time visibility into inventory.
- Flexible terms and variable fulfillment pricing with no lock-in commitments.
- Workflow Automation.
- A distributed fulfillment network to bring stock closer to consumers, shortening the last mile, and making delivery faster and more cost-efficient.
- Integration with the platform or marketplace of your choice.
- Contracted rates with many courier companies (saving you money).
- Sales, inventory, and KPI analytics to flag non-moving stock and give you access to real-time statistics
Contact us to learn more about consolidating your key performance indicators into one convenient dashboard to avoid common mistakes and let you focus on growing your business.