Today’s consumer is extremely astute to the benefits that e-commerce websites can provide. No longer are shoppers relegated to products that can only be found in their local area. Online stores and e-commerce companies have found ways to make themselves household names by offering a wide array of advantages when shopping for goods. Perks such as free shipping, secure payment options, and low prices due to reduced overhead are in-demand in 2018. The expectation of “more, better, and faster” will only increase in the coming years.
If a company wants to succeed in this day and age, they must adapt and evolve to meet the expectations of the modern customer.
Secure and Convenient Payment Options
Convenience is an aspect of the digital payment process every customer appreciates, even if they don’t realize it at the moment. Being able to easily enter their credit card billing information is critical in ensuring that a consumer doesn’t abandon their purchase. It’s therefore no surprise premium payment services like BlueSnap payment processing make it their mission to optimize this stage of e-commerce by providing online merchants with a reliable and easy-to-use all-in-one application.
When a customer has their shopping cart full and is ready to checkout in an online store, nothing is as important to them at that moment than a secure and convenient payment system. Secure payments are of utmost importance due to the prevalence of data breaches and identity theft. No product purchased online is worth the time, money, and hassle it takes to repair an identity, so a secure gateway is key to a secure e-commerce business plan.
Furthermore, e-commerce websites should always be encrypted and secured with an SSL certificate. If the customer does not see the reassuring “https://” in front of a URL, they are very unlikely to enter in their personal information on the website. This is good practice, and it is up to the online business owner to ensure that their shopping cart and checkout pages meet stringent security standards.
High shipping costs can derail an e-commerce business faster than poor product selection and lackluster marketing combined. Low prices are of no use if the shipping charges negate any potential savings. Customers have come to expect free shipping on most items. Larger online businesses have come to realize this, and have arranged competitive pricing structures with delivery companies; their large volume of shipments enable them to do this. This can be difficult for smaller businesses to overcome, but it does not change the reality that this is what the consumer desires. Look to drop shipping options in order to provide customers with the low prices they desire.
Low Prices Due to Reduced Overhead
Online retailers typically have lower prices than many physical stores, and this is due to reduced overhead costs. E-commerce businesses do not have to pay for a building, utilities, or land just to operate. However, this does not mean that they have free reign to charge the same price for a product as a brick-and-mortar store would and then keeping the extra profits for themselves. Consumers are too smart for this. They have come to expect lower prices as they know e-commerce stores have more flexibility built into their pricing structure by virtue of residing in cyberspace. Online businesses do often have drop-shipping or warehouse costs, but they almost never rise to the expense of operating a physical location. Passing these savings on to the customer base makes financial sense if the e-commerce business is future-oriented.
Modern consumers are price-savvy, intelligent, and have come to expect much from e-commerce retailers. Secure payments and low prices are indispensable; free or reduced-cost shipping is becoming standard as well. For years, customers have had high demands when shopping at brick-and-mortar locations; these same expectations and more have been placed on e-commerce retailers presently and will continue to be in the future.