In 2013, ecommerce grew by a record 13% to $262 billion, with expected continued annual growth of 10% through 2017.
Equally important, ecommerce is picking up a larger share of total retail sales each year. In 2012, ecommerce accounted for 5.3% of total retail, but that figure will increase to 10.3% by 2017.
Growth in online sales will come from a combination of factors, notably seasoned sellers expanding to mobile markets and newcomers building their first ecommerce sites to take advantage of this growing market.
Not all ecommerce ventures succeed. In fact, according to the Small Business Administration, about 70% fail within ten years of their start. Some fail due to insufficient financing, but most hit the skids because they go to market with sites that simply don’t work.
To buck this trend, both veterans and newcomers need ecommerce sites that give their customers what they’re looking for online, and that means ecommerce specialists who will take the time to understand the needs of your business and can meet those needs with best practice strategies and customized solutions.
How the Right Development Team Can Increase the Odds of Success
Experienced software architects who specialize in customized ecommerce solutions will understand both your business and the ecommerce marketplace. They will work with you to customize strategies that work for your business.
Here are 4 ways the right development team can help your business:
- Creating a platform that works: Newcomers to ecommerce have a wide variety of pre-packaged web development platforms from which to choose. Picking the right one can be confusing, and picking the wrong one can be a costly mistake. An expert development team will examine your business and create a platform which is the right size, can grow along with your business, and has the features to meet your customers’ needs.
- Building a mobile-optimized ecommerce site: Sales of mobile devices outpaced those of PCs for the first time in 2011. Increasingly, succeeding at ecommerce means having a site that’s equally friendly for mobile shoppers. Your web development team will help you create a website that makes it as easy for online shoppers to buy your products from a smartphone or tablet as from their PC.
- Closing sales with user-friendly shopping carts: About 70% of online shoppers leave shopping carts before they hit the submit button and make their purchases. Some abandon the shopping cart because of the spike in price from unexpected charges for shipping and taxes; others leave because of concerns about security or the lack of available options for payment or shipping. An experienced team of developers will help you incorporate a shopping cart that minimizes cart abandonment. They can also provide you with strategies, like providing discounts and coupons for subsequent purchases, not only to facilitate the first sale but also to bring customers back for subsequent purchases in the future.
- Giving online shoppers valuable content: Online shoppers who view a product video are 144% more likely to buy your products than those who don’t. That’s because shoppers will trust sellers who give them the information they need to make their purchase. Your site developers will show you how to create a platform that enables custom content, including video, blogs and webinars, and how to give shoppers valuable information to build trust and credibility, and to boost sales.
- Understanding your analytics: Having a team that understands the analytics available for your site and how to use them to your advantage can make a huge difference. For example, they'll understand bounce rates, conversion rates, where most of your traffic is coming from and which pages are creating the most sales. When it's time to make adjustments and further optimize your site, they'll be able to understand what changes need to be made.
The growth in ecommerce sales represents an unprecedented opportunity for business to increase sales. But taking advantage of this growing market means working with a team of experienced software architects who will take the time to understand the nature of your business, and provide customized solutions to help you create a site that makes it simple for shoppers to buy your products online.