As the year is slowly drawing to a close, marketers, entrepreneurs, and business leaders are starting to plan for a successful transition into 2019. However, the E-commerce arena might undergo the most dramatic shift of all, as the value of the industry continues to soar relentlessly and new online stores keep popping up all across the digital realm. The need to adapt, innovate, and meet the ever-changing demands of the consumer market becomes paramount.
Aside from improving your SEO game for better brand awareness and positioning in the SERPS, you will need to rethink the whole concept of customer experience and what it entails and adapt your approach for the 2019 audience. With that in mind, here are the five ways you can make your E-commerce store stand out just as the clock strikes midnight.
There is no replacing customer support
Customer support is an essential part of the overall customer experience, and it should come as no surprise that stellar customer support has the power to completely reshape the perception of your brand. In a competitive marketplace such as E-commerce, investing in customer support in order to elevate the shopping experience should become one of your priorities.
While it is true that AI and AI-driven chatbots are the way of the future, and that you should definitely invest in technology in 2019, you shouldn’t forgo interpersonal communication altogether. In fact, chatbots should serve as frontline customer support tools that will try to resolve simple problems without the need for human intervention. However, when it comes to complex issues, you will need a devoted staff of professionals who know your brand and know how to portray its values in the right way. Remember, a good customer support agent can mean the difference between a bad review and a surge of referrals.
Invest in augmented reality
Augmented reality is the way of the future, and it is quickly weaving itself into every industry in the governmental and civilian sectors. From expediting the diagnosing process in the medical industry, to boosting the shopping experience for the tech-savvy customer, augmented reality is here to stay. When it comes to E-commerce, it has the potential to transform customer experience as a whole.
As the industry gains in market value and experiences a surge of new business ventures hailing from every corner of the globe, the race for brand recognition and customer retention becomes a matter of innovation and offering a better service to the customer.
One of these services is augmented reality shopping. Put simply, this means mirroring the firsthand experience of shopping in a physical store, and using augmented technology to allow shoppers to try your products on before putting them in their carts. This technology is far from widespread right now, but soon it will be dominating the E-commerce universe.
Boost customer experience with amazing store design
Customer experience is the name of the E-commerce game, and the overall design and optimization of your online store will have the greatest effect in shaping that experience. This is why your Shopify agency should work on minimizing your bounce rate, leading your customers on an inspirational shopping journey, all the while presenting a polished, performance-driven website.
Needless to say, these and many other features of your website require careful planning and meticulous implementation. You can start by optimizing the visuals of your store, making sure you scale the concept down to a transparent, simple design that portrays your brand visuals in the best possible light.
Next, focus on speed and loading times by cutting extraneous elements out and scaling photos to their ideal sizes. Every page on your website should be optimized for easy navigation and complete user control, so be sure to introduce UX features such as hover-over effects, real-time chat, shipping details and estimations, and more.
Offer same-day and free shipping
Speaking of shipping, there is no denying that the store that offers free or same-day delivery is going to take home the 1st prize. Modern customers are impatient, and perhaps even a little bit spoiled, and thus they would love nothing more if the product they just ordered were to appear on their doorstep before they turn in. This might be an impossible task, but what you can strive to achieve is to expedite the shipping process as much as possible.
Okay, expedited shipping costs a lot of money, and you can’t possibly expect to cover the costs of sending a package abroad yourself. However, you can offer same-day delivery for your region, and lower-cost expedited delivery in your country. This will require careful financial planning as well, in order to figure out the best way to offer these perks to your customers without falling into a financial pit you won’t be able to climb out of – if you manage to pull it off, though, you will help your brand gain the traction it deserves.
Enrich your website with stellar content
Every marketer worth their salt knows that search engines and people love websites that publish stellar content on a regular basis. Quite simply, content is and is likely to remain king in the online world, and just because your main focus is on selling products doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have a content strategy to spread the word of your brand across the digital realm.
Brand dissemination is one of the key marketing tactics that will help you put your store in front of the eyes and ears of your demographic, but in order for it to bear the right fruit, you will need to optimize it for search engines and readers. Start by researching the relevant keywords for your niche and business, and then implement them into every piece of content you put out.
Next, make sure your writers put an emphasis on compelling storytelling, on giving something of true value and substance to the readers. Rather than using content marketing as a way to blatantly promote your products, use it to educate your audience, and inspire potential customers to become a part of your brand. In turn, you will have gained a loyal following that will follow you through thick and thin in 2019.
As the year slowly comes to an end, there is a need to rethink your marketing strategy and create a sound growth plan for the upcoming season. You can start by implementing these tips into your strategy in order to pave the road to yet another successful year in the competitive E-commerce arena.
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