Amazon may have started as an online bookstore, but it’s grown into a behemoth that has caused concern for several other industries. Grocery stores and food delivery, tech stores like Best Buy and clothing retailers, are among the industries to have felt the Amazon crunch.
But there are other businesses and organizations of all sizes who have grown despite, or even because of, the growth of Amazon.
Here are some tips for successful e-commerce in the Amazon era.
Have a Killer Design
Amazon has a specific look: list heavy (it’s huge, after all), and based on searching and filtering. In recent years they’ve focused on more photography and suggestions (or sponsored) links.
Your e-commerce site does not need to look like Amazon. In fact, having minimalist menus, high-end-looking photography and video are some popular features that can make your site truly stand out. Your branding can also include your story, since savvy consumers often like to connect with the company or brand they are selecting.
So make your site about your branding, not just what you are selling, and you’ll have a leg up.
Streamline the Shopping Experience
From smart inventory management to brilliant marketing, an e-commerce business that makes the shopping experience delightful will have more (and repeat) customers. Points to consider include:
- Search engine optimization - Make your site easy to find and visible to potential customers.
- Smart analytics - Gather data on keywords searched, visitor details, unique visitors, click-throughs on emails and more to manage marketing tactics and make smart decisions.
- Great search tools - Fast, easy, sortable site searches, with intuitive filters make it easier for customers to find exactly what they need, as well as fueling additional sales with similar suggestions.
- Easy payment - Taking credit cards, PayPal, gift certificates, and allowing rapid checkout can make the shopping experience swift and easy.
- Online support and simple returns - Offering the customer care and support customers want keeps them coming back.
- Be upfront about shipping costs - Having shipping costs known upfront is an important part of closing a deal, for many customers. Filling a cart and then discovering unexpectedly high shipping costs can cause some consumers to close that cart and turn to a site offering free (or more straight-forward) shipping costs.
- Make B2B appealing - If you sell B2B, it can still be an attractive interface and a great experience. Give customers specialized pricing, the ability to generate purchase orders (which convert to orders and invoices), and more with NetSuite.
If the entire shopping experience feels smooth, with smart recommendations/upsells, great follow-through (without annoyance), and easy to complete, visits turn into sales and sales into referrals.
Embrace Online Sales Options
While for many e-commerce businesses, the ideal scenario would be that customers would deal directly with your site and your business, interfacing with another vendor (such as eBay or Amazon) is also a possibility.
NetSuite integrates seamlessly with eBay (in the United States), tracking auctions right in NetSuite, and even automatically reducing inventory when an item sells.
With certain available applications, it is also possible to integrate NetSuite and Amazon. So, if your e-commerce business includes eBay, Amazon, or other 3rd-party sales sites, NetSuite provides the platform from which to operate.
SCS Cloud Partners in E-Commerce Success
At SCS Cloud we have worked with many e-commerce businesses to successfully launch into the cloud-- streamlining ERP and CRM functions, reducing time spent on repetitive or mundane tasks, and expanding like never before.
Let us partner with you to not only survive in the Amazon era, but thrive. Contact us to speak to an experienced professional.