Recent Australian research shows that pure-play retailers still represent 70% of consumer spending online. But retailers are catching on – and with sophisticated omnichannel strategies (and a big budget for marketing and systems development) – they’re the ones that are showing real growth in online sales.
Online sales in Australia represented $14.1 billion in the last year, representing 6.3% of total retail spend. And this is growing.
Strong online sales growth is all about creating an amazing experience online. And it's paying off for Australia's top-rated online retailers.
How to Create a Great Online Shopping Experience
As online ecommerce sites dominate the retail landscape, here's how you can create an amazing online experience to keep your customers coming back to your brand:
- Impress them before they visit you
- Delight your customers with the experience
- Be consistent
- Make the decision to buy with you an easy one
- Remember the customer, always
1. Impress them before they visit you
More than 70% of purchases (in-store and online) include online research prior to purchase. Your reviews, your social and your brand’s search engine experience all amount to them choosing to land on your home page.
2. Delight your customers with the experience
It’s not enough to just receive your parcel in the mail any more. It’s about delighting your customer with the entire shopping experience. There are a multitude of ways that you can do this – through express delivery, parcel tracking, rewards programs, and offers. Think out of the box, and create something unexpectedly fabulous. (But remember, once you do it once, they’ll expect it… refer to point 3.)
3. Be consistent
Creating a seamless product offering and experience between in-store and online will create familiarity and consistency for your brand. Continuity of service offering, promotional offers and rewards, or messaging across your media channels, will create trust, comfort, and desire to shop with you.
If you have a physical store, make sure that the stock and the pricing are the same in each of your two environments.
Note: if your online strategy is to differentiate completely from your in-store experience and offering, then this needs to be clear to your customers from the onset.
4. Make the decision to buy with you an easy one
Eliminate the purchase barriers – make your shopping cart checkout experience as easy as possible; recognize your existing customers, and make it easy for them to buy again – remind them you’re there with a great communication strategy, and tailor it to their purchasing behavior.
5. Remember the customer, always
Ultimately, you’re building your online experience for the customer. They’ll let you know if it’s not working – through their behavior, your conversion, and your feedback. Understand how they think, and what they want from their experience with you, and you’ll keep them coming back.