E-commerce enables new and existing businesses to venture into the market and reach potential customer without the need for physical presence. This way, business organisations can create products, avail them on their websites and other electronic portals and make sales through online transactions, a move that is only possible through e-commerce. All in all, the importance of e-commerce in the marketplace cannot be overstated, as it has revolutionised the way of doing business.
There is a reason why eCommerce has demonstrated such explosive growth in the past couple of years. Indeed, with the internet becoming an essential requirement of everyday life, businesses are learning to take advantage of the numerous benefits of e-commerce.
Global market. A physical store will always be limited by a geographical area it can serve. An online store, or any other type of eCommerce business for that matter, has the whole world as its market. Going from a local customer base to a global market at no additional cost is really one of the greatest advantages of trading online. In 2018, 11.9% of global retail sales came from online purchases and this is only set to increase year on year.
Around-the-clock availability. Another great benefit of running an online business is that it is always open. For a merchant, it’s a dramatic increase in sales opportunities; for a customer, it’s a convenient and immediately available option. Unrestricted by the working hours, e-commerce businesses can serve customers 24/7/365.
Reduced costs. e-commerce businesses benefit from significantly lower running costs. As there’s no need to hire sales staff or maintain a physical storefront, the major e-commerce costs go to warehousing and product storage. And those running a drop-shipping business enjoy even lower upfront investment requirements. As merchants are able to save on operational costs, they can offer better deals and discounts to their customers.
Inventory control. e-commerce businesses can automate their inventory management by using electronic tools to accelerate ordering, delivery and payment procedures. It’s saving businesses billions in operational and inventory costs.
Targeted marketing. With access to such a wealth of customer data and an opportunity to keep an eye on customer buying habits as well as the emerging industry trends, e-commerce businesses can stay agile and shape their marketing efforts to provide a better-tailored experience and find more new customers. Just consider for a moment that you have a chance to address thousands of your customers by their first name; that is something already.
Serving niche markets. Running a niche brick-and-mortar business can be tough. Scaling a niche product to become popular is effortful. By tapping into a global market, on the other hand, e-commerce retailers can build a highly profitable niche business without any further investment. Using online search capabilities, customers from any corner of the world can find and purchase your products.
Working from anywhere. Often, running an e-commerce business means that you don’t need to sit in an office from 9 to 5 or suffer through a commute day-in and day-out. A laptop and a good internet connection is all it takes to manage your business from anywhere in the world.