The ways in which the retail industry has evolved can be attributed to the introduction and growth of online shopping. As a result of this growth, online shopping has been able to provide customers with the safest and most convenient shopping experience throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Customers are able to browse a company’s entire inventory of products from the safety of their homes and in some cases can gain access to exclusive online promotions and deals. Even prior to the pandemic, in 2019, the frequency of online shopping was rising globally. Nearly $3.5 trillion dollars were spent worldwide from a contributing two billion online shoppers.
There are certainly some online shopping powerhouses in the industry. Amazon being atop the hierarchy. As one of the companies responsible for the sharp rise in online shopping popularity, this isn’t very surprising. Their nearly 200 million monthly users have a selection of over 12 million different products at their fingertips. While this is great for Amazon, it certainly creates a standard that other smaller online retailers won’t be able to meet. Not only does Amazon triumph over these retailers in product variety, but they also have much more developed shipping capabilities such as free two-day shipping. This isn’t as easily accomplished by smaller online retailers.
How can these businesses responsible for competing with Amazon keep up? Sure, customers love accelerated shipping, but that’s not all they love. Smaller online retailers have to prioritize developing strategies to keep their customers happy despite their slower than average shipping times. Most organizations begin by creating a branded tracking page to track their packages. While this won’t speed up delivery by any margin, it will allow customers to rest easy knowing their package is being tracked every step of the delivery process and they can check in whenever they’re curious of its status. Branded tracking pages are a great start for businesses as they can increase brand recognition and improve countless customers’ experiences.
Other ways that these competing online retailers can try and keep up is through a revamping of their website. The changes retailers should prioritize are elements of a website that will simplify the user interface making a more convenient experience. Another way in which these retailers can improve their website is through user accounts. When customers visit a retailer’s website, they should be prompted to create an account prior to purchasing any items. These customers would then be able to save their shipping and payment information for future purchases. Not only that, retailers can program product recommendations based on prior purchases for their online customers. Including promotions exclusive to online can also encourage more customers to visit a retailer’s online store as well. Even if these smaller retailers can’t match Amazon’s shipping speeds, they can provide a customer experience that is considerate of their time and money.
Navigating the online retailing space can be difficult. For more information on how to improve your online businesses’ shipping capabilities, be sure to check out the infographic featured alongside this post.