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Category Archives: future of ecommerce

What’s Projected for Online Sales Growth in the Next Five Years?

Pure-Ecommerce-Projected-Growth-of-Ecommerce-Blog

By: Catherine Perry

Ecommerce continues to grow by leaps and bounds!

There are many statistics substantiating the fact that ecommerce is gaining momentum quickly in being the preferred shopping method in the U.S. and globally. Through the internet you can find statistics for ecommerce by retail sectors, demographics, digital methods, and countries—each giving you specific information on everything ecommerce. But the statistic we believe is the most important of all is the one that shows the strength and growth, both current and projected, of the ecommerce market as a whole. Our research tells us that online sales growth is projected to increase annually 9.32% over the next five years.
An increase in online sales growth annually of 9.32% is a very strong number. Regardless of the benefits of owning your own business, being able to work from virtually anywhere on the planet, being your own boss, calling the shots, having flexibility—the benefit of being in an industry that is growing is the biggest benefit of them all! No one wants to be in a dying industry. Before becoming ecommerce owners, many of our clients had worked in industries that ended, like manufacturing. So, when embarking on their next chapter our clients were all looking for something that was on an upswing and projected to keep going up! And, guess what…ecommerce is that industry.
According to Forrester Research in their report titled “U.S. Cross-Channel Retail Forecast, 2015 To 2020,” online sales are predicted to grow by an average annual rate of 9.32% over the next five years. The report goes on to say that online sales in the United States are expected to reach $523 billion in the next five years, which will be an increase of 56% from $335 billion in 2015! These statistics should excite anyone who is currently a part of the ecommerce retail industry, as well as, entice  anyone who is thinking about this industry as their next career.
Based on data released this past February, 2016 from the U.S. Commerce Department, InternetRetail.com showed online sales accounted for more than a third of total retail sales growth in 2015. Below is a chart showing the growth of web sales for the last 10 years (2005 – 2015).

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Within this umbrella of tremendous growth of the ecommerce retail industry, there are other statistics that are important for ecommerce owners to note as you grow your business.

Increase in the Use of Mobile Devices for Shopping

According to PFS Web, in their blog article on the 5 key trends in ecommerce for 2016 (http://www.pfsweb.com/blog/5-key-2016-ecommerce-trends/), “In 2016 an estimated 37.5 million people in the U.S. (19% of smartphone users) will transact with their phones at the point of sale, which equates to an approximate 61% year-over-year increase.” Moreover, the technology research firm Gartner predicts that, “by 2017, U.S. mobile commerce will have increased so much in popularity that it will account for 50% of U.S. total digital commerce revenue.”

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The Importance of the Customer Experience

All shoppers are focusing on their experience right now, including the online shopper. Just as a shopper expects good, if not great, service in a brick-and-mortar store, the online shopper demands the same and even more so. Because digital shopping does not have the benefit of seeing the product up close and touching it, the entire experience is more heightened in whether it is good, mediocre, or bad.

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In the marketing firm Invesp’s blog article “The Importance of Providing a Great Customer Experience,” we found these statistics that provide an insight into the importance of the online shopping experience:
  • 55% of consumers would pay more for a better customer experience
  • A customer is 4 times more likely to buy from a competitor after experiencing a service-related issue, as opposed to a price or product-related issue.
  • A 10% increase in customer retention levels results in a 30% increase in perceived company value

Social Media Draws Traffic

There is no doubt that today’s digital world has embraced social media. Social media is an integral part of life. And, ecommerce must engage in this form of communication to grow and thrive. In an article written in 2013 by Jill Schmidt for InfoTrust titled “The Importance of Social Media in Ecommerce,” she cites Hubspot’s research that social media use in the United States has increased 356% in the last seven years.” Additionally, she quotes from Hubspot that “as of 2012, 52% of businesses had acquired a customer via Facebook and 44% had acquired a customer via Twitter. Nielson “reported that nearly 70% of adults who partake in social media buy products or services digitally.” These statistics were from 2013! The numbers have only gotten larger in the last 3 years. So, it is extremely important for ecommerce retailers to have a voice in social media for branding, relationship-building, driving traffic, and increasing sales.

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By the year 2016, TrueShip says, “Online sales driven from social media will grow 93% per year.”  In your social media platforms, it’s okay to promote your brand once in a while, but it’s better to connect with your customers all the time. Consumers aged 18 to 29 use a brand’s social media site for customer service interactions (43%) than for marketing (23%). (J.D. Power and Associates Social Media Benchmark Study). Social media should make a customer’s experience better, but it is not the core of their shopping experience. Keep this in mind as you want to provide easy access to support and information on your website while offering exceptional customer service with a friendly shopping experience!
We hope this article, with all of its facts and figures, has given you some specific data to show that the ecommerce industry is strong now and only gaining strength in the foreseeable future, as well as 3 important areas that need to be at the top of your priority list. It is truly an exciting time to be in ecommerce!

5 Reasons To Have A Responsive Design Website

5 Reasons to Have A Responsive Design Website
If you are considering starting your own online business then you’ve probably heard the term “responsive design website”. Since smartphones, tablets and other handheld devices have become all the craze to search and shop on the internet, the immersion of responsive design websites are becoming must-have for any ecommerce entrepreneur. I would like to explain further what a responsive design website is and the five reason to have one when owning or starting an online business.

What’s a Responsive Design Website?

A responsive design website allows the content, images and structure of the website to remain the same on any type of device. Whether an online shopper is using their smartphone, tablet or personal computer they are able to have a user-friendly shopping experience. It allows the user to have easy reading and navigation with minimum resizing, panning and scrolling across a wide range of devices.
Therefore, with a responsive website design, you will not have to worry about having different websites for various devices or making sure that your site runs properly on a mobile device.

Reason #1: Mobile Usage is Increasing Mobile Usage Is On The Rise!

In the article, “How Important Is Responsive Design” on HuffingtonPost.com, John Rampton shares some interesting data on how mobile usage has increased in the past couple of years. He included the following statistics:
  • More than 20 percent of Google searches are now being performed on some sort of mobile device.
  • 25 percent of Internet users only access the internet via a mobile device in the United States.
  • Out of the 4 billion mobile phones in the world, 1.08 billion are smartphones and 3.05 are SMS enabled.
 The future of mobile usage shows it slowing down no time soon! Here’s some additional interesting stats for you….
  • InternetRetailer.com report in June, in the first quarter of 2015, personal computers accounted for 66% of e-commerce orders worldwide, down 10% year over year while tablets accounted for 16%, up 3% year over year and mobile phones accounted for 18%, up 59% compared with the first quarter of 2014.
  • Statistica documented the rapid rise of Mcommerce in saying “Sales will grow by up to 87 billion dollars by 2016.”
  • Tablets will play an increasingly important role as worldwide consumer spending via mobile jumps from $204 billion in 2014 to $626 billion in 2018, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc. 

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Reason #2: Google Recommended

When Google speaks, online business owners need to listen since they occupy 67% search market share! Google introduced Mobilegeddon in April 2015, which was their statement that responsive web design is its recommended mobile configuration, and even goes so far as to refer to responsive web design as the industry best practice. It is recommended because there is one URL and the same HTML, regardless of device, which makes it easier and more efficient for Google to crawl, index, and organize content. Plus, Google is placing high value on user-experience when they are ranking sites; therefore, it is vital to take this into account in regards to search engine optimization.
Reason #3: Fluidity & Flexibility
Responsive web design sites are fluid! What does this mean exactly? Well, it means the content on the website can move freely across any screen resolution and any type of device. The grids and the images are fluid. Think of it like this, when you spill liquid onto a surface it begins to spread around the size of the surface. Well, it’s the same instance as responsive web design’s fluidity achieves the same result with website content on a device screen while retaining its appearance. Whether online shoppers are searching for their next purchase from the smartphone, tablet or personal computer – their results will fit their screen to give them the optimal shopping experience!Responsive Design Website - Pure-Ecommerce

Reason #4: Increase in Conversion Rates

Of course, you want to make your customers happy along with the search engines, but it would also be great to increase your online business’ conversion rates. Right? Think about it, if your website is not working on a mobile or tablet device then the shopper is not converting. They would need to do more “work” to have the same shopping experience as if they were shopping from a responsive design website business. They may have to resize the font, the screen, scroll more, etc. This can become very frustrating for someone who is limited on time while trying to make a purchase online. If a customer becomes frustrated by their experience they are going to leave the site and most likely note return. Remember: high bounce rates will ultimately leave to low conversion rates!
This leads me to the final reason to have a responsive design website…..

Good Service - Responsive Design WebsiteReason #5: Better For User & Online Business Owner

Your goal as an online business owner is to create a pleasurable shopping experience for your customers. It’s not just an eye popping design, having a memorable domain name, offering a great collection of products or even awesome deals – it’s ultimately about the ease of use when someone comes onto your site. You want your customers to not only enjoy their first shopping experience on your website, but return to online store to become a repeat customer.
A responsive design website is better for the user and the online business owner! I know I keep harping on offering a “better user experience”, but it’s true. You really want that to be your focus, you can have the best products in the world and offer outstanding customer service; but if your customer is not able to browse your website effectively they are going to move on. This is why having a responsive design website is SO important!
As the business owner you will also want your website to be easy to manage. When you have two separate platforms for your desktop and mobile sites, you will need to manage your content/SEO in two places. This can lead to you not updating or managing it properly. Therefore, being able to manage it in one place, but work on different platforms is simply awesome!
When starting an online business you need to do your research to find the right platform, which will be the best not only for you, but also for your customers! To find out more about starting your own responsive design website business go to www.pure-ecommerce.com. While there review the new responsive website features to capture the attention of shoppers in the online marketplace.

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