No doubt about it, e-commerce continues to grow and while it represents a burgeoning share of total retail sales, there are still significant hurdles to overcome.
“We’re in the midst of a profound structural shift from physical to digital retail,” noted Jeff Jordan of venture capital firm Andreesen Horowitz.
eMarketer reported, for instance, that e-commerce growth by quarter was about five times that of store locations in 2013 and 2014.
Yet there are headwinds.
Market research firm Market Track said companies that want to succeed in e-commerce must operate successfully amidst these risk areas that could undermine snaring and retaining customers:
• Volatility – Prices changing with increasing frequency and predictability;
• Non-compliance – Pricing and promoting brands and products outside established guidelines;
• Illegal/illicit activity – Counterfeiting and unauthorized resale;
• Size/scope – More retailers, resellers and products available online than ever before.
JDA Software Group also conducted a survey of more than a thousand online U.S. - based shoppers last year. Of the approximately 35% who bought online and elected to pick up their purchases at a store, about 50% experienced problems in initially getting their purchases. Wayne Usie, a JDA senior VP, said it may suggest that retailers might find it challenging expanding their e-commerce... Read more
Today, websites are “must haves” for businesses of any size. Large organizations, of course, generally have the resources to invest in developing robust websites. But, on the other hand, smaller organizations and entrepreneurs are often extremely budget-conscious. With tools like WordPress, Wix and other do-it-yourself options so readily available these days, it’s not uncommon for many of these smaller, cash-strapped businesses to attempt to create a website themselves.
In most cases, the decision to create your own website is a mistake. In fact, the only real benefit to building your own website is that you are likely to save money in the process. Unfortunately, it’s money that could have been invested to generate better outcomes for your small business, such as better brand awareness, a vibrant identity, and strong lead and sale generation.
The example below demonstrates the risks of a “do-it-yourself” approach. This website was built on Wix, and as you can see, it looks outdated and is unattractive to the browsing audience.
It takes a lot of time to build a website. The process requires a lot of strategy up front to ensure that the site will meet business needs. “Depending on your skills in web design, the finished design... Read more
We're all spoiled brats. Think about it for a moment. It used to be normal to search through fifty pounds of books to figure out if it was ok to serve pinot blanc with brie. It was either that or pick up the phone and call that one uncle you haven't talked to in eight years. Oh how the world has changed! If I get a Yahoo Answers reply that's over 500 words, I cry TL;DR and move on.
Now I'm not saying that our streamlining of knowledge acquisition technology and the concurrent adjustment of expectations is necessarily a bad thing. I'm saying that we, as marketers and content creators, need to acknowledge that there is a new standard that we need to meet. It isn't good enough to have the right information. It needs to be presented in a way that is easy to read and easy to understand.
Our solution has been infographics. A properly built infographic is by far the best way to organize useful information in an appealing way. That isn't to say that there aren't drawbacks. Infographics are images, so Google's web crawlers can't see the content. This can make the whole post look like there is... Read more