5 Keys To maximising Your E-Commerce Profits

Is your customers E-Commerce experience building your business or holding you back?

In the world of online shopping, customer satisfaction does not end with the click of a mouse or swipe of a finger.  There are several factors that can influence consumers while on your website and there needs to be a seamless transaction all the way from online research through final delivery. Here are five key factors that heavily influence customer satisfaction that need to be considered if you are an online retailer:

  1. Accuracy (Right Product): Receiving the right product plays a pivotal role in determining customer satisfaction.  In a recent survey by Voxware, approximately one out of every three respondents (29%) said that they would abandon shopping altogether with a retailer if they received one incorrect delivery.  This equates not only to one lost customer for life, but combined with the impact of social media and word of mouth, this could seriously impact brand image and performance.  Therefore, it is immeasurably important to run multiple accuracy checks, run by multiple employees to reduce the risk of errors.
  2. On Time Delivery:  According to a survey from Comscore, 42% of shoppers have ABANDONED an online shopping cart because of the delivery date.  Communication of the expected delivery date of the order is critical to setting the correct expectation of the consumer. Conversely, 41% of shoppers RECOMMENDED a retailer when they received their product when expected which can lead to increased loyalty and new customers. Speed is crucial to e-commerce operations.  The ability to turnaround orders within the same or next day is highly recommended.
  3. Order Tracking:  has in recent years become a necessity for online retailers with 75% of customers believing it is a service that every retailer should offer. These primarily include email notifications containing a unique tracking number as well as having the ability to check directly on the retailer’s website for the tracking information whether it is pending, en route or arrived
  4. Speed: As an e-commerce retailer it is crucially important to “under promise and over deliver”.  Consumer expectations for speed have been raised by services like Amazon so it’s no surprise that (according to Voxware) 48% of respondents  expect their deliveries in less than 4 days at little or no cost to them.  Additionally, 17% of respondents will abandon shopping with a retailer altogether after receiving just one late delivery and this number increases to 55% if it happens for a second or third time.  Retailers and e-commerce traders that are doing their own order fulfillment can find it difficult to meet these expectations in a cost efficient way as they don’t have the infrastructure to support both speed and economies of scale.  Operating multiple distribution centres or outsourcing fulfillment to a third party can not only increase speed of delivery but also save dramatically on shipping costs.
  5. Free Delivery:  Many consumers today expect free delivery for orders of a specified value and this can highly influence customer loyalty. According to Comscore, 65% of respondents have recommended a retailer due to the availability of free or discounted delivery. Retailers should clearly state their free shipping policies on their website so it’s clear to the consumer before they get to checkout.  If it is not feasible for you to offer free shipping to customers due to the complexity and cost of your current organization, then it may be a good time to consider how an outsourced fulfillment provider can help.

Being an e-commerce retailer can be a challenging endeavour, but by clearly having some information available to consumers up front, along with a seamless operations and delivery infrastructure will make all the difference when it comes to customer satisfaction.   When the last mile of delivery is as effective as front end operations, retailers have the winning formula to increase customer loyalty and profitability.