Being Responsive Is Key To Digital Retail Success

According to figures released by Parcel2Go.com in February, over the five years between 2008 and 2013 there was a 421% increase in the volume of parcels delivered at Christmas. This increase clearly reflects our changing consumer habits.

For centuries products have been bought and sold at markets or in shops with a direct person to person interaction. In the majority of cases, the buyer took away the purchased goods with them. You had access to the selection of goods that were on offer in your local town or city and were restricted to making your purchases within the opening hours of the retailer.

The internet and mobile technology has been the catalyst for a radical shift in our shopping habits and the way in which retailers market and sell their goods. Initially the cost to businesses of setting up e-commerce websites and consumer suspicions about online payments meant that online shopping took time to get established. There is now greater trust and more effective technology to support ecommerce and it is a rapidly advancing trend that looks likely to continue for the foreseeable future.

The convenience of being able to shop at any time means online purchases fit more easily into the other demands of our busy lives. We don’t need to dash to the shops in our lunch break or battle with the masses to pick up a bargain in the sales. We can complete our weekly grocery shop whilst on the train home from work, or select sales items from the sofa on Christmas Day. We are no longer restricted to the goods on sale in our local town, but can purchase products from anywhere in the world.

In order to remain competitive, businesses with products to sell need to embrace e-commerce. It is other businesses and not just consumers buying online, so to become part of the supply chain you too need a strong online presence. Selling online does bring your business into direct comparison with your competition and your online competition is likely to be much greater than you expect.

Consumers can easily click between one website and the next, so they can easily compare like for like and choose the best deal for them. Whilst cost is a primary factor in most consumer decisions, it isn’t the only criteria for selection. Convenience and delivery are two other factors that impact on the final purchase, so in order to gain orders; you need a good business courier.

When shopping online, you obviously don’t get the goods instantly, but consumers often want them as quickly as possible. Increasing numbers of online retailers are offering next day and even same day delivery options to minimise the time the buyer has to wait before receiving their goods. They are also providing options on where goods are delivered, so it could be to the home or workplace of the consumer, or to a local shop for collection.

In order to provide maximum convenience, any online retailer needs to invest in the services of a reliable delivery company. The most effective business couriers need to offer flexibility with collection times, the option of storage, packing and despatch services and a good network that will allow for swift delivery.

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