U.S. companies have taken their eyes off the consumer and the result is worse customer experience, according to a new report.
The Forrester study found CX, which hit all-time rating highs last year, is now back down to pre-pandemic levels. The overall CX Index score fell from 72 in 2021 to 71.3 in 2022 on a 100-point scale. The company says that while this may seem small, it is “statistically significant and meaningful in the real world because [it reflects] changes in CX quality for large numbers of customers.”
The cost. According to Forrester research, a one-point improvement in CX Index score can be worth $22.5 billion more in assets under management for the average investment firm and $1.2 billion in revenue for the average mass-market auto manufacturer.
Across the board problems. The 2022 U.S. Customer Experience Benchmark report examined 13 business sectors. The average score dropped in 10 industries and rose for only three. That’s a reversal from last year, when three fell and nine rose. These industry-level losses leave nine industries with average scores lower than or essentially equal to their 2020 levels.
Who fell the furthest. Not surprisingly, two industries hit the hardest by labor shortages did the worst. The hotel industry average was 74.5 in 2020, now it’s 71.2. Similarly, the airline industry had a not-great 67.5 score in 2020 and is down 2.3 points this year.
The report also found:
- CX quality fell for 19% of brands this year, about twice as many as the 10% of brands that gained points. Further, this year’s brand-level losses were larger than the gains: The average loss was 3.8 points, the average gain was 3.1 points. Six brands lost between 5 and 10 points, while no brand gained 5 or more points.
- Digital-only CX has gotten worse, dropping 0.4 points from 2021 to 69.3. As a result the quality of digital-only CX now trails physical-only CX by 2.5 points. Digital-only CX worsened for 10 industries; for six industries, this is the second loss in two years. The mass-market auto manufacturer industry had the biggest digital-only drop, going from 71.7 in 2021 to 69.2 this year.
- Customers’ perception that a given brands’ values align with their own has fallen to pre-2020 levels. This year only 45% of customers across the 12 verticals studied perceived value alignment, a 4-percentage-point drop from 2021. What’s more, every vertical peaked in 2021 and backslid in 2022.
- Experiences are neither easier nor more effective. On average, 70% of customers said their experiences with brands were either easy or effective, 1% lower than the year before.
Why we care. Best case scenario is that CX peaked in a year when most consumers were behaving the same way. Last year saw people working from home and ordering on-line. Now, for some reason, businesses want workers back in the office (where multiple studies show they are less productive) and people are back to behaving in many different ways. Forrester says its because businesses lost their customer focus. Might be both, actually.
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8 Effective Ways to Ensure Ecommerce Business Success
It is a known fact that the global consumers are favoring ecommerce, and the reasons for ecommerce business success are many.
According to a Statista forecast, the retail ecommerce revenue in the US is expected to cross 1.3 trillion dollars by the end of 2025.
Image via Statista
While brick-and-mortar stores are gradually losing their dominance, the digital marketplace is blazing. More and more ecommerce brands, big and small, are coming up and gaining a foothold in this ever-expanding landscape.
If you are one such ecommerce business striving to taste success, you know how demanding and competitive things can be. And you only beat the fierce competition with aggressive ecommerce marketing strategies like digital advertising, content marketing, social media marketing, etc.
In this post, I will be sharing 8 key factors you need to focus on to ensure your ecommerce business success and sustainable business growth.
Let’s get started.
8 Key Factors for Ecommerce Business Success in 2022
The future of ecommerce is bright and the small businesses that jump on the bandwagon early will reap great benefits. But what does it take to taste this success?
Here are the 8 key success factors for ecommerce businesses.
1. Target a Niche Audience
The secret to ecommerce business success lies in understanding your target audience and focusing all your efforts on engaging them. Instead of trying to attract a broad audience on the search engines, select a niche audience specific to your small business, understand their pain points and interests, and position your brand to meet their needs. An SEO tool like Semrush or Ahrefs can help you with your research to build a strong marketing strategy based on real insights.
The goal is to make your product unique and market it to a relevant audience that is more likely to make a purchase. This strategy can increase customer loyalty and win repeat customers for your small business. Therein lies the secret to your ecommerce business success.
2. Go Mobile-First
The pandemic has accelerated our shift to ecommerce and given rise to m-commerce. Insider Intelligence estimates that by 2025, m-commerce sales will account for 44.2% of total ecommerce sales in the US.
So it’s clear that the success of your ecommerce business relies on the mobile-friendliness of your site. Having a mobile-friendly online store can help you deliver a seamless online shopping experience to customers on the go.
You can begin by running Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test and building a progressive web application (PWA) for your online store. A responsive design for your website will help boost sales and pave the way for your ecommerce business success.
3. Choose the Right Distribution Channels
Your audiences are active on different channels and if want your products to be visible to them, you need to choose the right distribution channels.
If your business model focuses solely on your ecommerce website, you should broaden your perspective and consider other sales channels. There are several other options to sell your products like Amazon, eBay, social media, affiliate marketing, and so on. You can manage your sales process effectively with the help of sales CRM tools. These tools integrate your different sales channels and makes your sales process more efficient.
Conduct extensive research to figure out which of these channels are preferred by your target customers. Showcase your products in an attractive way to boost your ecommerce sales. This digital marketing strategy can contribute to your ecommerce business success.
4. Create Unique Content
You heard that right. To ensure that your ecommerce brand stands out in the crowd, you should invest in high-quality and diverse content.
Today internet users are flooded with content and to grab their attention you need to think out of the box and create content marketing strategies that truly grab their attention. Remember, video content is ruling the landscape delivering great results. You can use Premiere Pro Presets to create unique and impressive videos and stay ahead of the competition.
Gather insights from customer data analysis, see what your competitors are doing, and learn from your previous digital marketing campaigns to create a more targeted content marketing strategy for your small business.
5. Continually Update Your Email Marketing List
Marketers rely on email marketing to achieve diverse marketing goals. Emails can be used to generate leads, nurture them, build relationships with customers, ensure customer satisfaction and boost ecommerce sales.
But to leverage the power of email marketing, you need to be smart about your email lists and use the right email tools to manage them. There’s no point in sending a thousand emails when only a couple of hundreds of recipients are your target audience.
That’s why segmenting your email lists and keeping them updated is crucial to your ecommerce business success. An effective way to manage your email lists is to ask for the recipients’ feedback on your emails and the information they prefer to receive.
By analyzing the responses, you can make more strategic decisions and ensure the success of your ecommerce business.
6. Deliver a Great Shopping Experience
The expectation of customers in terms of customer experience has skyrocketed and that’s why you need to work towards improving customer satisfaction.
Personalized communication could be one of the biggest game-changers, be it in recommending products, reminding them of abandoned carts, or introducing them to your latest offerings. Creating user story maps can go a long way in making your personalization efforts more effective.
Right from the moment customers land on your page to when they make a purchase, you should strive to create a smooth customer experience. You can also consider incorporating an AI-powered chatbot into your website to take your customer service to the next level.
To make your customers happy, offer them special deals and discounts. Such moves will surely boost your ecommerce business success.
7. Invest in Social Media Marketing
Social media, can be immensely effective in creating brand awareness, extending customer service, and generating leads for your ecommerce business. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube are all marketers’ favorites to reach out to niche audiences and drive traffic for their sites.
Having said that, it is a crowded market, and winning big on social media isn’t easy. As an ecommerce brand, you need to use social media analytics to create digital marketing campaigns that not only generate engagement but also fill your sales funnel with quality leads.
Ecommerce brands should also leverage social selling as it is growing into a prominent trend. This shoppable post by Macy’s allows its Facebook followers to buy what they like instantly.
Image via Facebook
If invested strategically, selling on social media can act as a profitable sales channel for your business.
8. Leverage Ecommerce Tools
Your team need not struggle to ensure the success of your ecommerce business. A variety of advanced ecommerce tools are at your disposal to optimize your efforts.
Some of the must-use tools for you are:
- Website tools – to design, set up, and manage your ecommerce site
- Ecommerce marketing tools – to help strategize and execute your campaigns with ease
- Competitor analysis tools – to understand the gaps in your planning and improve it
- Analytics tools – to help you gauge the performance of your digital marketing campaigns
- Business tools – to help you manage daily operations, finances, logistics, inventory, and customer service
Choose the ones that can boost the success of your ecommerce business.
There you have it, a list of 8 key factors you need to work on to ensure the success of your ecommerce business. Gaining this success is hard work but it is worth it.
If you want to fuel your business growth, I strongly recommend building your ecommerce marketing strategy to enhance customer experience and build your brand identity. Go ahead and give them a try to beat the competition and establish a successful ecommerce business.
8 Effective Ways to Ensure Ecommerce Business Success
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