Strategy

Posts Categorized: Strategy

customer knowledge

The Customer Knowledge Revolution

Since the advent of Amazon in 1995, online shopping hasn’t changed all that much. The customer takes the time to find a particular product, puts it in their cart, and pays.  Most online services change dramatically over the course of a few years, months even. For one of the most widespread services, eCommerce, to go on like this for 19 years, it’s just mind-boggling.

 

For too long, businesses have treated customer expectations as a secondary concern, being more interested in supporting their own culture and brand name. Yet at the same time, consumers have become more and more demanding in what they expect from their online service providers, whether that is more privacy, more options, or more emotional involvement. Consumers want a more real-life interaction in their online spaces. They want an experience that caters to them as valued customers, rather than numbers on an executive’s chart.

 

One factor that separates consumers from this experience and the products they really want is expert knowledge. Today, when surfing the variety of choices on Amazon, eBay or Alibaba, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Take cameras for example. A cursory glance can reveal a huge amount of similar looking cameras at wildly different price points.

How can a customer, searching for their first digital camera, make the right choice for them without wasting hours of their time and going through a number of different sites. If the customer was in a brick and mortar store, they would have a sales representative, providing expert knowledge. This is what is and has been lacking in the online shopping experience.

 

Those websites that do have a knowledge base generally make it available to their customers through a basic search bar. This doesn’t take full advantage of your knowledge base, as the customer often doesn’t yet know what he or she wants. Why not open up your knowledge base in an intuitive and accessible way? Letting your customers leverage your expertise will make the shopping experience more fun for them, keeping them on your website longer, and ultimately making the decision to buy from you. In short, increase customer knowledge to increase conversion. Luckily there are platforms to help retailers do just this.

BestMatch provides your customers with straightforward questions, help text every step of the way, and rich media. All of which combine to make a positive shopping experience. Let us help you bring expert knowledge to the people, and let them make the best decision for themselves: shopping on your site.

 


Online Retail

Brick and Mortar vs. Online Retail

December 2013 was retail’s biggest month of the year, for obvious holiday-related reasons. Brick and mortar stores saw a surge in sales compared to November, with shopper traffic increasing by 35%. However, in comparison to December 2012, sales took a serious hit, with traffic dropping nearly 18%.

Some of this decline can be blamed on the shortened holiday season and Hanukkah’s early arrival. Worth mentioning is the inclement weather and convenience that drove customers to shop online.

 

While online retail grows at an increasing rate every year, it still accounts for a very small percentage of all retail sales. Sales from online shopping have grown 300 percent since the beginning of 2004, yet these sales are only some 6% of all retail.

 

A recent Pew Research Center poll found that, although the vast majority of teens shop online, over 75% prefer to do their shopping in-store. Teen trends are seen as a sign of things to come, so what can we learn about the future of retail?

 

Online retail’s continued growth depends on bringing the in-store experience to the digital frontier. People continue flocking to physical stores despite the convenience of online shopping for the human interaction and personalized experience. How can one create this environment in the impersonal space of online retail?

 

BestMatch, the digital salesperson, provides an answer. By listening to customer input, combined with product expertise, BestMatch’s sales applications provide a personalized and interactive experience. Customers get the best of both worlds, the convenience of shopping from home, with the personal touch of shopping at a brick and mortar store.