Advantages and disadvantages of E-commerce
What Are the Advantages of Ecommerce?
You came to learn what are the advantages of having an online business. Top of the list of advantages of e-commerce is low financial cost but other pros include selling internationally, retargeting customers, personalization of the buying experience, etc. These advantages and disadvantages of E-commerce will help you determine if starting an online store is right for you.
1: Low Financial Cost
One of the e-commerce benefits is that it has a lower startup cost. Physical retail stores have to pay up to thousands of dollars to rent one of their store locations. They also have several upfront costs such as store signs, store design, buying inventory, sales equipment, and more. Physical retail stores also have to pay staff to work and run each location. They may also need to hire security staff depending on the product value in the store.
However, for a dropshipping store startup costs are estimated at $418 in 2019, and e-commerce stores only pay $3192 a year on Shopify at most for virtual ‘rent’. Shopify also includes an easy-to-use platform, hosting, free Shopify themes, great apps like Oberlo, and lots of other great perks. Depending on what type of e-commerce business you run, you may only need to hire employees when you grow to a certain level. As your online store is online these employees can work remotely, making it easier to find staff that will suit your company.
If you choose to dropship online, you won’t need to buy bulk inventory saving you a lot of money. Your store logo is often more affordable than a store sign. Your business expenses are generally much lower in e-commerce. This is one of the most attractive benefits for new entrepreneurs looking to keep their costs low.
2: 24/7 Potential Income
Another advantage of e-commerce is that online stores are always open for business. With your Facebook ads, you can attract someone at 11 p.m. or 4 a.m. in any part of the world. Most physical location stores are open between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. By being available at all hours, you can attract people who would normally pick up a product in stores if the store were open.
Think about your audience who don’t work normal hours or who are too busy to pop into a shop to buy something. An e-commerce store allows you to attract those who may have odd work schedules or who don’t have time to shop in person. For a customer to order at night, you don’t need to have employees working the night shift to ensure all orders get processed. You’ll never need to hire a security guard! All you need to do is automate your ordering systems so that customers receive a confirmation email when they place their order to give them peace of mind.
3: Sell Internationally
Next on the list of e-commerce benefits is that a new brand can sell to customers around the world easily. You have the ability to discover your audience whether they’re in the U.K., South America, or neighboring countries. If you choose to dropship from AliExpress, many products offer affordable ePacket shipping or free shipping. This allows you to price and ship your products competitively to a worldwide audience.
Selling worldwide is a great feat as it helps you build your brand a lot faster, broadens your marketplace exponentially, and allows you to see profit long before your local competitors.
4: Easy to Showcase Bestsellers
Ecommerce benefits like being able to easily display best-sellers make it easier to show off products to customers. While you can design a brick-and-mortar store to sway people to buy certain products, it’s easier for a customer to find the best-sellers in an online store.
The reason why you want customers to buy your best-sellers is that they’re proven. Other customers have already bought them and are happy with their purchase. If you want to showcase new products to customers you can include them in your upsell, email marketing, or retargeting ads. With an e-commerce store, you can include great product photography and product descriptions to sway the customer’s choice.
5: Personalized Online Experience
Website personalization, one of the online business advantages, can enhance the online shopping experience. Creating personalized landing pages for different audiences can entice them to buy from you without much extra work on your side. It is not like customers coming into a physical store who you need to nurture from the first minute. You can do all the hard work before you launch a campaign and then relax once you release the campaign to your customer base.
Try segmenting your email lists based on purchases made, location, or even how much money a customer spent. You can also retarget a customer who visited your online store showing them an ad for a product they added to their cart and forgot about. If your online business has a login feature, you can have a welcome message appear such as ‘Welcome back (name).’
Product bundles can help the customer buy more for a better price increasing average order value. You can also personalize upsells based on what the customer has looked at or what you think they might like based on their purchase behavior.
6: Affordable Employees
One of the benefits of e-commerce is that hiring employees is affordable and, as mentioned before, you can hire from anywhere in the world. You can choose to outsource work to virtual assistants in countries where the cost of living is much lower. You’ll need fewer employees in an online business than a retail location. A huge advantage of online businesses is you don’t need to hire employees at launch. You can start and run an e-commerce business all by yourself. Only when you start to grow or when you have the capital should you start to hire employees.
7: Easier to Encourage Impulse Buy
Another e-commerce benefit is that you can capitalize on impulse buying as online shoppers are more inclined to partake in this. If you have attractive product photography, with vibrant color or human emotion, you can create ads that drive impulse buys. You can also execute a range of scarcity tactics such as countdown timers or showcasing limited quantities.
8: Easy to Retarget or Remarket to Customer
It’s easy to create retargeting ads to reach out to customers in your area when running an online business making it one of the most profitable e-commerce benefits. You can create a Facebook pixel. You can use the Shoelace Shopify app to retarget the browsers who visit your store but don’t buy.
With e-commerce stores, you can retarget people who add products to the cart but don’t abandon and don’t buy or who visit a blog post and never buy. You can collect email addresses easily with an effective pop-up or lead magnet and continue marketing to your customers after you’ve made the sale.
9: Customers Get a Less Invasive Experience
Some people dread walking into a brick-and-mortar store as they’re forced to interact with the store’s employees. Whether learning about a sales promotion or being asked questions throughout the shopping experience, some may prefer online shopping as it can be a little less invasive making it one of the best benefits of e-commerce. If a customer wants to contact the store owner, they can click on a live chat feature, email, or send a Facebook message.
10: Gain Access to Customer Data Easily
One of the best e-commerce advantages is that you can easily gain access to data for analysis on your customer. Most people feel uncomfortable giving away email addresses or postal codes to physical retailers. In e-commerce, you can get your customer’s name, mailing address, e-mail address, and phone number. That means you have at least three different ways to communicate and build a relationship with them.
You can even have them fill out marketing surveys, share their birth date with you, and more. If you ask them to create an account, you can obtain even more information from them to better serve them. If your customers are based within Europe be careful of GDPR regulations when contact customers.
11: Able to Process a High Number of Orders
If you choose to dropship, you can process a high number of orders with ease. As your business continues to grow, you might choose to hire employees to help with order processing. Also with dropshipping, you don’t need to physically have the product in order to sell it to a customer, therefore you do not have to worry about stock control like physical stores have to
In retail stores, long queues can deter people from shopping. With e-commerce, there’s no waiting time. A customer can place orders on his or her own schedule with no delays allowing you to accept a high number of orders.
12: Can Scale Business Quickly
One of the benefits of e-commerce is that it’s easy to scale the business quickly. You can increase your ad budget when ads are performing well without having to worry too much about keeping up with the demand, especially if you dropship.
With brick and mortar stores, it can be hard to grow product lines or add more cashiers due to finite space. You’ll need to find a bigger space, renovate or wait for your lease to end in order to scale your business. If you create informational products, you run into a challenge again as it takes time to write ebooks, courses, and more.
With drop shipping, you can add new products to your store without having to worry about shipping products or holding inventory allowing you to grow quickly.
13: Grow Your Business Organically with Content
With e-commerce, you can grow organic traffic and sales with e-commerce blogging. From making videos to writing blog content, you’ll be able to optimize your store to drive traffic and sales without having to spend more money. With e-commerce, you’ll be able to not only get traffic organically through content creation, but you’ll also be able to monetize those customers with retargeting ads.
A brick-and-mortar retailer would need to market to their customers to encourage visits or ensure they’re located in a high-traffic area to get more shoppers.
Fascinated by e-commerce? Willing to give it a go? Check out these e-commerce terms before you start. They’ll help you better navigate the process of launching an e-commerce business.
What Are the Disadvantages of E-commerce?
1: No One Can Buy During a Site Crash
The most exceedingly awful of the web-based business impediments is the point at which nobody can purchase from your store if your website crashes. That is the reason it’s essential to guarantee your site is facilitated at the correct stage. For instance, in case you’re paying the base facilitating charge and get a flood in rush hour gridlock from a high changing over an advertisement or a TV yell out like Shark Tank, your site will probably crash.
Luckily, Shopify offers free facilitating in their month-to-month charge permitting you to have perhaps the best worker available. In ongoing memory, there was just one time where destinations were down. In any case, online business stores weren’t the lone locales influenced. Twitter, Spotify, Soundcloud, and more were influenced by this accident. The issue was settled that very day. However, site crashes on Shopify are uncommon to the point that it’s feasible not to mess up your business.
2: Customers Can’t Try Before They Buy
While this is presently an issue for some retailers, this will not be a drawn-out issue. With increased reality, more stores are beginning to add AR components to their store to permit clients to give items a shot.
Expanded reality internet business organizations offer answers for organizations to make a more intelligent involvement in your clients. On the off chance that you own a beautifying agents store, you can look at Sephora’s Virtual Artist application for an illustration of a delight retailer with an increased reality experience.
3: E-commerce Is Highly Competitive
Tracking down the correct specialty is another of the most exceedingly awful internet business burdens. The fact of the matter is the best specialties are regularly the most serious that is the reason individuals are attracted to them. The more serious a specialty is, the more costly advertisements for that specialty are.
There are a few different ways around this. To begin with, you can pursue an unexpected crowd in comparison to your rivals. On the off chance that every one of your clients is being focused on by contenders through Facebook advertisements, you may have a go at positioning naturally with SEO streamlining. In the event that every one of your rivals is utilizing Pinterest, you may attempt Instagram showcasing if your crowd are visual creatures.
Second, if your promotions are costly, you can send traffic to blog entries and retarget your clients who visit them to make cheaper advertisements. Dealing with CRO missions can assist you with being more effective than your clients.
4: Customers Can Be Impatient
On the off chance that a client has an inquiry in-store, a sales rep is on the floor prepared to respond to them. Notwithstanding, an online business disservice is that most organizations experience a deferral reaction to client requests. The fact of the matter is most clients expect a reaction from a business inside the hour via web-based media. On the off chance that you delay in reacting to their message, they can lose control and shop elsewhere all things considered. You should be an online day in and day out.
You can employ client support agents who are prepared to fulfill your clients through Upwork. Or on the other hand, you can work with a chatbot to help clients figure out their answers any time or night. However, the entirety of this actually doesn’t compare to an individual who can take care of every individual, face to face.
5: You Need to Ship Your Products
Clients believe transporting times to be one of the most noticeably awful web-based business impediments. At the point when a client shops face to face, she can take the item home immediately. Yet, with web-based shopping, most clients get their items in up to seven days. While Amazon offers same-day delivery, it was anything but a productive model until they made Amazon Prime.
It just became productive in light of the fact that they have a huge number of Prime individuals. The arrangement is to be straightforward with your client. Tell them when they can expect bundles when they put in a request.
6: Physical Retail Is Still More Popular Despite Decline
Despite the fact that one of the advantages of internet business is that it’s developing, actual retail actually possesses a large portion of the piece of the pie. In 2014, the retail business had gathered more than $22 trillion. However, online trade had just made $1.3 trillion around the world. Having an online business in the beginning phases permits you to turn into a pioneer in your specialty. However, most cash made is in actual retail locations making it an internet business drawback.
Henceforth, why Amazon, notwithstanding being the greatest online store, is currently making face-to-face stores. However, remember that $1.3 trillion in deals is definitely not a modest number. There’s still a ton of potential that online retailers can take advantage of. Also, this number continues to develop. (Advantage and disadvantage of E-commerce)
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