4 tips to grow your eCommerce business
Consumer spending habits have changed, with more customers than ever shifting to online channels. That’s why almost every business needs a strong eCommerce approach to thrive and grow. Read this article to hear our four tips to take advantage of this shift and help win the eCommerce battle.
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With ever more customers shifting to online channels during 2020 and likely to continue shopping digitally, almost every business needs a strong eCommerce approach to thrive and grow.
Research shows that over four in ten customers expect to shop more online in the future than they did before the coronavirus pandemic, with nearly a third buying items online that they had never purchased digitally before1. At the beginning of 2020, it was predicted that £5.3bn would be added to eCommerce sales in the year2.
1 Research by ChannelAdvisor, May 2020
2 Research by Ascential, June 2020
For growing businesses, eCommerce is likely to be key to your go-to-market strategy as a way of increasing your customer reach, boosting brand presence and driving sales.
The positive news is that our quarterly research shows mid-sized businesses have proven themselves resilient through the coronavirus period and optimism is tentatively returning. Our index score measuring overall positivity across a range of factors, including the sales pipeline, planned investment, finance raising, and business prospects, is higher among mid-sized businesses (£10m–£25m turnover) than with small or micro businesses.
But to convert this optimism into business growth, leveraging and maximising eCommerce channels will be key. Here are four tips focused on the critical areas to think about.
- Become fully customer-centric – This means thinking about the entire customer experience through their end-to-end journey in doing business with you. Can you recognise a customer so that they don’t have to enter their details every time they buy from you? Are you alerting them with relevant and tailored offers? Can you create a view of the customer’s preferences and habits from the transaction history you hold?
“To help retailers plan, we’re able to overlay consumer opinion, sentiment and spend behaviour, and the way shoppers are thinking about their finances, to customer data. And we can break that data down in many ways, including regionally, to see how shoppers are behaving depending on where they are in the UK.”
Kirsty Morris, Managing Director of Account Development, Barclaycard Business
- Provide a multi-channel environment – With the increasing movement online and to mobile/digital apps, you need to reflect this multi-channel, multi-touchpoint environment. Physical outlets, as well as mail order/telephone order (MOTO), remain important and part of the mix, but it’s crucial that customers can interact with you online too. Systems can be linked up so that customers don’t have to re-enter information on each channel. Accounts should update based on their history with you. That way, you can build in more personalisation and loyalty offers – something that customers increasingly expect. It’s about making everything as seamless, easy and personalised for the customer as possible.
- Power change through payments - Clunky payment systems deter customers: research shows that 58% of customers will stop a purchase altogether if the checkout process is complicated3. You need quick, effective payment systems that are safe, secure and reliable, that can cope with alternative payment methods too (which are growing all the time). That’s why we’ve launched Smartpay Fuse, a new payments system that easily integrates with your services to create a smooth customer experience.
- Make security a top priority – Security should be a prime concern for any business, as it is for customers. There are many current and upcoming regulatory standards that systems must comply with, including the Payment Services Directive 2 (PSD2), Strong Customer Authentication (SCA)* and 3-D Secure. Our Smartpay Fuse gateway is fully compliant with all of these, incorporating sophisticated encryption and tokenisation (converting customer card numbers to ‘tokens’ for extra security). You can have peace of mind knowing that Barclaycard Business works hard to keep the service regularly updated to meet the highest security standards and evolve to meet any new regulatory requirements.
3 PPRO, April 2020
*The EEA (European Economic Area) SCA deadline is 31 December 2020 and the UK SCA deadline is 14 September 2021.
Quite often, the most vulnerable businesses are smaller organisations that have moved online for the first time. We can make it really simple and easy to protect against data security risks with ‘plug and play’ packages
What’s your eCommerce strategy?
Are you in a position to win the eCommerce battle against your competitors?
With the surge in online shopping due to add £5.3bn to UK eCommerce in 2020, read our whitepaper to find out more about how to offer customers seamless digital interactions and payment journeys4.
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4 Research by Ascential, June 2020