A blog post shared by RMB and written by Aluwani Thenga highlights that in reaction to a significant shift in customer behavior as well as changing expectations brought about by this year’s exceptional events, the value of e-commerce transactions in South Africa is predicted to increase by 150 percent to R225 billion by 2025.
What is E-commerce?
E-commerce refers to the electronic purchase and sale of goods using online services via the Internet. Thanks to COVID, this industry has now awakened something huge in South Africa. We now have access to a mobile application that promises to deliver groceries to us in 60 minutes with little to no contact with other people. Purchasing goods or services on your mobile phone has become second nature to so many consumers, and with the unfortunate increase in petrol prices, buying online has proved to be more cost-effective, giving businesses even more reason to switch to an e-commerce store.
Tips on how to successfully move your business to an e-commerce store?
E-commerce stores, like company websites, must be straightforward and intuitive. Remember to keep it simple and nail the fundamentals in your effort to provide a superior online retail experience. Make the consumer journey as simple as possible and avoid over complicating the online purchasing procedure. Customers want to get in and out as quickly as possible while shopping online, so make the e-commerce transaction as efficient as feasible.
Collaborate with reputable partners and online professionals.
Because e-commerce sites might receive a lot of traffic, you need to make sure that your site is constantly up and running. Seek advice from companies that have worked on eCommerce platforms before and look for dependable Internet service providers who can satisfy your expectations and demands.
Make a choice about which online platform to use.
If you want to manage an online e-commerce business, you’ll need online e-commerce platforms. The correct e-commerce platform will enable you to execute complicated business tasks online, whether you’re a B2C or B2B traditional brick-and-mortar organization. Not only will you be able to speed up the process of interacting with your prospects, but you will also be able to reduce human interference and remove human errors.
However, choosing an online channel is not as simple as it appears – it is highly dependent on the goods you plan to offer as well as your target demographic. As a result, the ideal e-commerce system is one that suits your company’s needs and specifications.
Link your brick-and-mortar store to your online store.
Integrating a brick-and-mortar store with e-commerce creates a lot of potential for your company. Furthermore, today’s buyers prefer to shop through many platforms. They may try things, pick up orders in-store, and quickly return items, if necessary, in a brick-and-mortar store. Not only can it help you increase sales and conversions, but the actual experience will also help you establish customer loyalty. As you can see, tying your physical and online stores together is a good idea.
Before merging an online store with a physical store, consider the following suggestions:
Pick up in-store: Customers may shop for all their favorite styles and fits from the comfort of their own homes, place orders online, and pick up the same day or after the item is transported to the physical store.
Endless aisles: You can supply in-store kiosks or touchscreens to your customers. Customers can use them to look for and order products or items that aren’t available in the physical store. Furthermore, clients have the option of ordering shipment to their home or picking up their item in-store. As a result, you can not only profit from customer intent, but you also won’t have to stock inventory for each item or product in all your physical locations.
Promote your goods and services.
Make sure your items and services are well-represented on an online store. Make sure your website is search engine optimized (so that it appears on Google) and consider what your ideal consumer will type into the search field. Put your best products or services at the top of your website and hire a professional photographer to picture them in their best light.
Even if the need is only apparent, South African customers prefer to buy things that fulfill it. Make sure your offerings have clear descriptions and that the buyer understands why it is useful or beneficial to them.
If making the switch to eCommerce seems frightening, keep in mind that your previous experience and knowledge will provide you a tremendous advantage. This understanding will aid you in creating a user experience that is shaped by your expertise. Then, as you continue to figure out what works best, learn from your successes and failures. Most importantly, keep in mind that being online allows you to make a difference for more clients than ever before.