The pandemic teaches us how to behave in response to volatile conditions and shows how consumer behavior is changing in fast motion.
Retailers are investing in online business to gain flexibility. The number of online sales went up sharply in 2020 – and it’s here to stay.
A recent Deloitte study on Covid-19 impact on consumer behavior shows that more consumers did not necessarily switch to “online shopping” but relied on their existing and good shopping channels.
Success criterion shopping experience & user habits
At this point, it is important to point out market leader Amazon. Many platforms and stores have a lot of catching up to do in terms of shopping experience and usability – and not just in terms of (marketing) technology. Consumer expectations are based on standards and these are constantly increasing, e.g. in customer service.
Fast, friendly and competent information about products via chat or telephone and uncomplicated processing of a return are examples where there is often still a lot of potential. Don’t make it easy for me with the AI chatbot, which often seems impersonal. Contact info should be easy to find and available. It makes itself felt when you actually do not want to be reached and adequate contact information is not easy to find.
In addition to your own store solution, you should also be present on marketplaces that correspond to your target group. There is a customer potential there, which will move away from the already familiar “environment” only with difficulty.
Conversely, relying only on “Amazon” is unwise. As a retailer, you stand on shaky ground, e.g. your own account can be closed by Amazon at any time. Amazon is an advertising platform and price war machine without customer loyalty possibility for you as a dealer.
If you are a brand producer, you should protect your brand and your products at least in terms of presentation on Amazon, otherwise you will suffer a loss. How do your own brand products get onto Amazon if you do not sell anything there yourself? Naturally, through retailers and people who sell their brand there independently.
Omnichannel as a success criterion
Omnichannel once again calls up a significant sales potential for you.
Omnichannel means having several channels (retail store + marketplaces, etc.) in focus and managing all relevant processes centrally. It is best to understand omnichannel not only on the customer side, but internally as a way of linking to software systems, suppliers and “storefronts”.
The omnichannel effect then starts as far back as possible at a point with full automation effect and at the same time still economically controllable.
Multifunctional systems are becoming more and more standard in successful small and medium-sized enterprises and give entrepreneurs tremendous flexibility to ideally handle their markets.
Customer loyalty as a success criterion
Customer loyalty is one of the most decisive factors for online sales growth in 2021 and makes your life easier, as it means that you are not only dependent on new acquisitions.
Generate customer loyalty. Easy ways:
Follow-up products, upsales feature, discount feature, birthday coupon, stock info by mail to well-designed customer loyalty program.
There are quite a few more marketing ideas to keep customers loyal – “loyalty” is the magic word with up to 70% sales increases Q3 2020 compared to 2019 according to a recent Deloitte study.
It certainly makes sense to creatively put oneself in the position of the customer and to think about what the customer would expect from one’s own point of view – in order to then consistently implement what has been recognized.
Using well-known dates such as Black Friday, Christmas, Easter, Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day should be standard and not forgotten (112% increase in sales according to study). The store portfolio should also be expanded continuously and sensibly.
Bulletpoint’s 2021 strategic success in terms of your online sales:
- Understand what your customer really needs
- Develop a viable omnichannel strategy
- Implement ongoing creative marketing ideas (popups) as immediate operational actions
- Continually learn and adapt lessons learned to new realities
Sustainable omnichannel ideas:
- Instashopping (in our current newsletter)
- Build customer loyalty program
(Lightport Newsletter – Magazine February 2o21 issue)
- Communicating long-term benefits of your products
(Lightport issue – magazine March 2021)
| DI Stefan Spindler|