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01 September 2021 • Resources

Top 7 functions of ecommerce + essential features for your online store

Top 7 functions of ecommerce + essential features for your online store

The importance of ecommerce today has grown exponentially from just 10 years ago. While ecommerce has both advantages and disadvantages, launching an online business has the potential to bring you tons of success as an entrepreneur.

In the ever-evolving landscape of digital commerce, understanding the multifaceted functions of ecommerce is key to unlocking business success.

In this article, we delve into the varied roles that ecommerce plays, from enabling global reach to enhancing customer interactions, shedding light on the intricate mechanisms driving modern online trade. We'll also take a look at some of the most important features you'll want your ecommerce website to have to boost your chances of success!

What is ecommerce? Definition 

Ecommerce, short for electronic commerce, refers to the buying and selling of goods and services over the internet. It involves online transactions conducted through websites, mobile apps, or other digital platforms.

There are several types of ecommerce, encompassing various business models, such as business-to-consumer (B2C), where businesses sell directly to consumers, and business-to-business (B2B), involving transactions between companies. This kind of commerce also includes aspects like online payments, digital marketing, inventory management, and customer service.

Ecommerce has revolutionized the way businesses operate, providing a global reach, convenience for consumers, and opportunities for entrepreneurs to establish online stores, market products, and reach a broader base of shoppers beyond traditional brick-and-mortar boundaries.

Top functions or advantages of electronic commerce

In the realm of modern business, ecommerce stands as a dynamic force reshaping the way transactions occur. This section delves into the pivotal functions that make ecommerce a driving engine for global trade.

1. Internationalize your business

Ecommerce offers a powerful avenue for going global with your venture by breaking down geographical barriers and enabling global reach. Through online platforms, you can showcase your products or services to a worldwide audience, transcending physical limitations. International shipping options and logistics partnerships facilitate efficient product delivery across borders.

Language and currency customization tools make it possible for you to tailor the shopping experience to diverse markets. Digital marketing strategies, including social media advertising and search engine optimization, allow businesses like yours to target specific international audiences.

The benefits are manifold: increased market reach, revenue diversification, and reduced dependency on local economies. Being able to sell on the internet allows you to tap into emerging markets and capitalize on cultural and regional nuances through targeted marketing efforts.

Internationalization fosters brand recognition on a global scale, enhancing credibility and competitiveness. It also provides opportunities to optimize supply chains, source products more cost-effectively, and foster innovation by engaging with diverse consumer preferences. 

2. Offer your products 24/7

While you're limited to selling during traditional business hours with physical commerce, ecommerce enables you to offer your products and services 24/7. Online stores operate continuously, allowing customers to browse, shop, and make purchases at any moment. This accessibility caters to the convenience and preferences of modern consumers who expect immediate access to products.

Being able to offer your products around the clock means that you can capture sales from different time zones and regions, maximizing revenue potential. Customers appreciate the flexibility to shop whenever suits them, enhancing their experience and loyalty.

Furthermore, an always-open web presence can lead to increased brand exposure and shopper engagement. Offering products 24/7 can be particularly advantageous if you have international customers, as it accommodates diverse schedules and ensures consistent service. 

3. Get started with a small budget

Ecommerce offers a cost-effective pathway for individuals and businesses to get started even with modest budgets. Creating an online store requires less initial investment compared to establishing a brick-and-mortar counterpart. A top-notch platform should provide accessible options to set up virtual storefronts without extensive technical expertise.

Lower upfront costs reduce financial risk, allowing entrepreneurs like yourself to test business ideas and markets without committing significant resources. Digital marketing tools offer affordable avenues to reach target audiences, enabling precise targeting within budget constraints. This democratization of commerce fosters entrepreneurship, enabling small businesses to compete with larger entities on a more level playing field.

In a rapidly evolving business landscape, the ability to start and operate an ecommerce venture on a small budget empowers innovation, encourages creativity, and amplifies entrepreneurial opportunities for a diverse range of individuals and enterprises.

4. Take advantage of analytics to obtain customer insights

With ecommerce, you have the ability to leverage powerful analytics tools to gain deep insights into customer behavior, preferences, and interactions. Through tracking website visits, purchase patterns, click-through rates, and more, you can obtain valuable data about your customers' actions and preferences.

Taking advantage of analytics makes it possible for you to tailor your marketing strategies and product offerings based on real-time data, enhancing shoppers' satisfaction and engagement. Personalized recommendations and targeted promotions can be implemented, increasing conversion rates and sales for your business. Analytics also provide the opportunity to identify pain points in the user experience and make data-driven improvements to your website.

Moreover, tracking and analyzing your buyers' data allows for the segmentation of audiences, enabling more effective marketing campaigns and better strategies for retaining customers. The ability to harness analytics in ecommerce empowers businesses to make informed decisions, optimize processes, and create a customer-centric experience that ultimately drives growth and success.

5. Provide better customer service

As the number of online stores continues to grow and shoppers have a greater variety of choices at their fingertips, the future of ecommerce is likely to bring an increased consumer demand for personalization, including for customer service.

Ecommerce revolutionizes customer service by offering efficient and personalized interactions. Internet businesses can provide 24/7 support through chatbots, live chat, and email, addressing shoppers' inquiries promptly. This accessibility enhances the user experience by providing immediate assistance at any time.

Moreover, as mentioned above, ecommerce enables you to gather and analyze your buyers' data, leading to improved understanding of individual preferences. This knowledge allows for personalized product recommendations, targeted marketing, and tailored communication, fostering stronger relationships with shoppers.

Satisfied customers are more likely to return for future purchases and recommend your brand to others. Seamless customer service experiences contribute to building a trustworthy brand image, which is vital in a competitive online marketplace.

6. Avail of remarketing techniques

Ecommerce provides a powerful platform for employing remarketing techniques, which involve targeting users who have previously interacted with a website or product but didn't complete a desired action, such as making a purchase. Through the use of cookies and tracking pixels, you can identify these users and strategically present them with relevant ads across various channels on the internet.

Availing of remarketing helps re-engage potential customers, reminding them of their initial interest and encouraging them to return and complete their desired action. This tactic can significantly improve conversion rates and ROI on advertising campaigns. Remarketing also enhances brand recall and visibility, as ads are shown to users across different platforms, reinforcing brand recognition and trust.

By capitalizing on previous user interactions, your company can leverage remarketing to capture lost opportunities, drive conversions, and maintain a consistent presence in the minds of potential customers, ultimately boosting sales and maximizing your marketing efforts.

7. Encourage impulse purchases

Ecommerce provides a conducive environment for encouraging impulse purchases, which are spontaneous buying decisions triggered by factors like attractive visuals, limited-time offers, and easy checkout processes. With the use of strategic design elements, compelling product imagery, and prominent placement of discounted or trending items, you can better capture the attention of shoppers visiting your online store.

Fostering impulse purchases can lead to increased sales revenue, as visitors are more likely to add additional items to their cart when tempted by impulse deals. Such purchases can help clear excess inventory, enhance average order value, and boost overall profitability. In addition, leveraging impulse buying can aid in creating a sense of urgency and excitement, enhancing the overall shopping experience and engagement.

However, while encouraging impulse purchases can yield benefits, it's important to strike a balance between offering tempting deals and maintaining transparency and consumer trust. Thoughtful implementation of impulse purchasing strategies can enhance your company's bottom line while providing customers with an enjoyable and satisfying shopping journey.

What makes a good ecommerce website? Basic, must-have features 

When your online store is properly established, it’ll run like a well-oiled machine. Until that day, though, you may be faced with one headache after another.

The issues that can be prevented or diminished with the proper setup in place are potentially serious enough to affect your efforts for digital commerce and ecommerce alike and have an impact on your profitability and longevity.

With a variety of leading ecommerce platforms available to you, it’s important to know what services they offer and what they’re capable of.

To ensure that you’re on the right track, here are some of the crucial features that your online store needs to achieve success.

Content management

Content management is a critical part of your marketing and sales strategies.

Managing content covers your website’s pages, banners, navigation bars, blog posts, images, and more. This is a time-consuming yet essential job, so support services via your ecommerce platform are essential.

When you join forces with WiziShop to make your entrepreneurial dreams a reality, building your website and managing its content are super simple!

We offer an intuitive interface and an extensive variety of design templates so that you can create an online store that truly reflects you and your brand. Our easy-to-use WiziBlocks system, based on the drag-and-drop method, allows you to build a great-looking homepage in the blink of an eye.

In addition, we’re all about freedom. We’ll give you access to your site’s HTML and CSS files so that you can customize the look and content of your shop however you’d like!

Whether you want to add a third-party feature, change up your graphics, or link your web inventory to that of your physical store, it’s all possible with our API.

You'll also be able to use WiziShop's powerful artificial intelligence to generate different kinds of high-quality texts in just a few seconds. Blog posts, product descriptions, translations, titles and meta descriptions, and more... creating content for your online store has never been easier. 

Customer management

While the history of ecommerce has seen all kinds of changes since it began, one thing that remains as important as ever is the relationship with the customer.

An ecommerce business’s relationship with its customers begins with the marketing messages that are conveyed. However, the relationship continues through its ability to provide personalized attention and deliver an overall excellent experience.

Your business should have an easy process in place for managing customer records. This includes creating and deleting accounts, resetting passwords, and even adding special notes to a specific account.

To better serve the people making purchases from your business, you should be able to easily and quickly find a customer’s account via a name search. This account should ideally show you the full details on current and previous orders.

Making adjustments for shoppers quickly couldn’t be simpler with WiziShop’s store-revolutionizing innovation, Speedy Change. It allows you to edit multiple items simultaneously, giving you more time to focus on product development and marketing!

Email management

Leading ecommerce systems support all of your business’s emailing needs. This includes the creation of email template designs and the automation of messages based on triggers.

These triggers may be after a visitor creates an account, a shopper makes a purchase, or somebody leaves a blog comment or product review.

Fortunately, taking care of email-related tasks is a breeze with WiziShop’s complete emailing tool, Auto-Mail Booster. With this helpful functionality, you can customize email content, track the results of your email campaigns live, and more.

You can even program automatic email follow-ups for situations such as abandoned carts, new customers, etc. All you’ll need to do is choose the subject, create the email, and select which subscribers in your email address list will receive the message. That’s it!

Order management

The most basic function of your ecommerce site is to process purchase transactions. On your end, you should be able to view, search, and sort your orders as needed.

In addition to having a fully functional interface to browse through and to manage numerous records, you also need to have access to individual orders. For individual records, you should easily be able to locate customer details, product pricing and features, tax info, special notes, and other essential data.

Your website should be sophisticated enough to create new orders automatically and to dispatch an order confirmation email to each shopper immediately after the purchase is made.

You can do all the above and more with WiziShop! Also...remember WiziShop’s Speedy Change tool mentioned earlier for customer management?

Guess what? The Speedy Change functionality can be used to make order-related edits as well!

Promotion and sales management

Promotions and sales are essential components to retail marketing campaigns. For this reason, your shop must be well equipped to help you manage your web promotions. Discount codes are commonly used on the internet to apply savings when shoppers make a purchase.

Your website should be able to create and manage those codes. This includes defining active and inactive dates, establishing applicable products, and even monitoring how many times the code has been used.

While many discount codes are tied to savings on the purchase of a product, others provide free shipping or offer other types of promotions. The ecommerce solution that you select should be versatile enough to accommodate all of your promotion needs.

Not to worry when you’re working with WiziShop, though! Managing your promo codes can easily be done in your site’s administration area.

You’ll have access to a promo code creation tool with three sections that allow you to change various parameters. Here, you’ll be able to adjust the code’s common options, its configuration, and its main information.

Payment management

Your site should have both front-end and back-end features for managing payments.

On the front end, site visitors need a simplified checkout procedure that’s secure. You should be able to accept the types of payments that your target market prefers to use.

On the back end, you should be able to track which payment methods are being used. You also should have easy control over the payment types that are accepted through a convenient activation and deactivation feature.

WiziShop’s Smart Check-Out ordering process makes finalizing purchases effortless for your customers. In fact, it allows them to place an order three times as quickly as they could with another shop not created with WiziShop!

How is this possible? It’s all due to the many optimizations that we’ve put into place.

These include things like letting people check out as guests, helping them with filling out address forms, allowing them to save their carts for 30 days, and much more.

Shoppers will love how quick and easy it is to order from you!

Tax and shipping management

Your business may serve customers across the country and maybe even around the world. Tracking tax rates and shipping costs for all areas manually is an extensive chore, and making adjustments on a per-order basis is simply not practical.

Furthermore, with your ecommerce solution, you should also be able to manage which countries you ship to. The activation and deactivation procedure for different countries should be streamlined and easy.

Likewise, your website needs to allow you to keep up with changes to tax rates, shipping costs to different zones, and more.

Note that with WiziShop, you’ll be able to set up your tax and shipping information with just a few clicks of your mouse. Besides that, with a plethora of delivery options already integrated, you won’t have to deal with any complicated installations!

Want to expand your business internationally? Not a problem with our MultiShop feature!

You’ll be able to set up multiple stores in just a few minutes, with each one featuring that particular country’s language and tax information.

SEO management

Both the design of your website and its content directly impact search engine optimization (SEO) and your site’s ranking on search engine results pages. Optimizing for search engines involves working on your product descriptions, page titles, meta descriptions, alt text, and more. 

Keep in mind that SEO is tied to page load speeds as well. The templates and themes that are available through different platforms can impact how fast pages load. Other factors, such as image file size, video file size, and other details, must also be considered.

When you choose WiziShop as your ecommerce solution, we’ll handle all the technical parts of SEO for your site! We’ll optimize all of your images and ensure that your site follows all the SEO best practices.

Furthermore, we’re always on the lookout for new, exciting features or methods to further improve our SEO efforts for our clients! We do A LOT of monitoring to make sure that our clients’ websites are as up to date as possible.

Reporting tools

To run your business effectively, you need access to analytics for everything from inventory and sales to details about where new leads are coming from, cart abandonment rates and more. While you may rely on external reporting as well, your platform should provide you with a full range of stats.

Through most of the leading platforms, you can access data via a dashboard that can be customized to fit your needs. In addition, reports and charts may be created and exported with ease.

With WiziShop’s all-in-one solution, you won’t need to worry about installing any outside tools to check out your shop’s important stats. We’ve got you covered!

WiziShop: The perfect ecommerce software for your business

Are you preparing to launch a new online store? As you can see, there's no doubt that the ecommerce solution you select can play an important role in your ability to run your business, serve your customers well, and make savvy decisions.

Or perhaps you're a current seller struggling to manage your established web store with the mediocre functionalities that your current system offers? Know that it doesn’t have to be like that!

Whether you’re starting a new ecommerce business or using an outdated solution that doesn’t meet your needs, WiziShop is the best option for taking your online store to the next level of success.

Furthermore, when you sign up with our platform, you can take advantage of a 3-day free trial, so you really can’t go wrong!

Try WiziShop free for 3 days

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