Only once thorough insight has been gathered will online retail companies be able to align their business plan with a coherent e-marketing strategy
With the economy continuing to struggle and the risk of another potential recession remaining apparent, online retailers must ensure a robust business offering to achieve market success in the e-commerce sector. Having a full understanding of the wants and opinions of their target market is a vital step in doing so, according to market research tools provider, Cint.
To combat the cost of increasing overhead, some retailers are instead taking to the virtual marketplace and swapping brick and mortar businesses for e-commerce stores. The popularity of internet shopping has increased dramatically over the last five years with online retail giants prospering while shopping mall stores continue to struggle. However, a vital factor that online retailers must always bear in mind is the importance of knowing and understanding the needs, attitudes and habits of online shoppers and how they differ with mall shoppers. This is why any company that sells its products online should always carry out consumer research prior to the launch of a site, whether they believe they already have an understanding of the retail market or not.
Attracting a customer to a store in a shopping mall can be dependent on an interesting window display, however, guiding customers to a website is less direct. Companies looking to embark on e-commerce sales must have a clear understanding of online shopping trends and know what it takes to (1) gain visitors to the website and (2) convert those visitors to sales.
Bo Mattsson, CEO of Cint, comments: “Retail companies must always gather market intelligence before establishing an e-commerce business in order to better understand the opinions of their target audience and ensure they will see a valuable return on investment. Knowing the shopping habits of a target audience – spending routines, the times of the day in which they visit the site, the length of time they spend shopping online, their delivery requirements – are all factors that must be reviewed before taking that e-commerce step, and this level of insight can only be achieved by carrying out market research.
“Only once thorough insight has been gathered will online retail companies be able to align their business plan with a coherent e-marketing strategy via social media channels, digital advertising, PR or by carrying out a voucher or discount code promotion to attract online users to their site. Knowing the opinions of customers will mean they are better placed to understand the wants and needs of their prospective customers – which in this treacherous marketplace is a definite must.”
For further information on the market research tools available please visit www.cint.com.
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