Getting Ahead of Competition in E-Commerce
Let’s talk about your competition. You know, the one that has more active Instagram followers or the one who might have been in the game longer than you. You know who they are!
We all know how there are countless more opportunities to be found on the internet than ever before. More companies are going digital and more startups are setting up their businesses online. Ecommerce industries are booming and there are no reasons for anyone to think that things are going to slow down any time soon. But while there appear to be more opportunities to make money on the web, the competition seems to get steeper every day.
If you are facing this problem right now and feeling the competitive weight, try to keep in mind that competition isn’t necessarily a bad thing for you. This is because you’re going to have every opportunity to do better than your competitors, especially when you find yourself in an ecommerce business where you are willing to give your very best in!
Many successful businesses have been in your place right now and all of them have employed methods that helped them get ahead. The worst you can do is shy away and give up.
So what can you do to improve your business and the quality of your services so that your target audience will prefer shopping with you?
In this article, we are going to address those questions by sharing with you some tips on how to get ahead and stay on top of the competition. We’ll let you in on some simple things you can do for your online store and some changes you can make to beat your competitors in the game!
Let’s get started.
Know Your Competitors
We cannot stress how important this one is, and this is why we are tackling this one from the start.
First of all, you can’t go about the business of beating your competitors if you haven’t taken some time to study them, and the best place to do this is to peruse their ecommerce website and their social media pages.
While you are at it, try to observe your competitor's strengths and weaknesses very carefully. The objective here is to identify their strategies, see what they are doing right and to see what mistakes they are committing.
If you see some ideas that you feel may work for you and your ecommerce business, it’s not a bad thing to take some notes and maybe think about implementing an identical strategy. Weaknesses are also important to note because it means that you can do better!
Offer Better Services
What are you offering your consumers that make you better than your competition?
Many ecommerce businesses think that offering better products or cheaper prices will help you get ahead of the competition, but what you should also consider is the fact that customers are after businesses that can offer them a better service.
An example of an instance where a shopper may prefer to shop with you instead of with your competitor is if you offer a longer warranty period, better store policy, and faster shipping. Even if you are selling the same exact item and a slightly higher price, these perks may have a huge influence on your target customer’s purchase decision.
Service is all about what you are willing to give to your customers, and a willingness to treat them well. On your site, make sure to promote your services and let your customers know that they’ll be able to benefit greatly from doing business with you.
Offer Customers Incentives
Give your customers incentives to shop with you and stay loyal to your shop by implementing a rewards system. Implementing a great rewards system or loyalty program not only entices customers to shop with you, but it also drives them to keep coming back to your online shop!
So what is a loyalty program?
When you implement the use of a loyalty program in your store, you are setting up a reward program that offers your customers rewards, coupons, discounts, merchandise, etc.
One great arrangement your store can try is a simple point system where your customers can earn points every time they complete an action on your site or whenever they make a purchase. Point systems are a super-effective way of getting your customers to keep coming back to your store as increasing their points is an incentive in of itself.
Points can correspond to currency that customers can redeem to get a discount, freebies, or VIP benefits.
Connect Through Content Marketing
Aim to have a deeper engagement with your customers through content marketing. Today, customers of online stores are often shopping online in a transactional manner. Meaning customers are shopping online only to seek out the lowest prices. Ecommerce businesses are forced to reduce their prices just to get ahead of their competition and attract customers.
If you wish to enjoy a relationship with your consumers that go beyond the usual transactional route, then we suggest leveraging the use of content marketing.
When you engage in content marketing, you must be focused on delivering relevant information at a consistent level to attract and retain your target audience. Creating great content around your marketing strategy is also considered a long term approach with the aim of building a strong connection with your target audience, because you are delivering something valuable and relevant to them, and not just mindlessly pushing your products.
For example, if you are running an online store dedicated to selling camping and survival gear, you might want to consider running a blog on survival topics. You can use your blog to attract people to your site from your social media pages and to create an active community of people who are enthusiasts of the outdoors and of survival skills.
If you can deliver this kind of value to your customers by providing insight and information on a shared passion that your shop is centered on, then you can be sure that you’ll be one-upping the competition.
Study Your Customers
When it comes to getting ahead of the competition, it pays to study customer buying behavior and habits. If you are familiar with your target consumer’s buying habits, you’ll be able to know which methods and angles work best when it comes to selling your products.
In order to be familiar with your customers’ buying habits, you must first define them. Who are your target customers? Are they new parents? Guys with beards? Ski Enthusiasts? Defining your target market may take some time, research, and objective consideration on your part, but it’s one of the first crucial steps in getting ahead of the ecommerce competition.
You’ll be able to find many consumer reports online, so do your research well. Take note of where your customers are searching for products, what they value, and what factors are impacting their buying decisions.
Use your findings to improve your store, its products, and services to better appeal to your potential consumers. For instance, if you find out from your research that your product descriptions are not the type that creates impact, then this is an indication to change it for the better.
Improve Your Store’s Visuals
Because you have competitors, this means that there are other ecommerce shops out there that are working with the same idea and selling the same or similar products as you. One of the best possible things for you to have against your competitors is to have better quality and more attractive product images.
Product images and store visuals are of paramount importance. Human beings—being visual creatures, have a natural tendency to gravitate towards what looks pleasing and good on the eyes. When shoppers are surfing the net and doing their research for a particular product that they are interested in, they tend to compare products from different stores. When faced with identical products and with identical prices, the majority tend to favor the ecommerce site that has quality, professional product photographs, simply because it looks better.
Investing in high-quality product images is a must for any ecommerce shop because quality images and graphics help to do the selling for you. If you are running an online store with subpar images, then it’s time to step up your game and beat the competition to the punch with vibrant and informative images and better store graphics!
Back To You
Getting ahead of the competition in ecommerce can be a tough game to play, but everything is worth it once you start getting more traction in the business. Your ultimate goal in beating the competition is to do and be better than them by finding ways to make your store more attractive to your customers.
Studying your customers’ buying habits is also important, and finding ways to offer them better deals, better content, and services than your competitors is key.
Now it’s time to ask yourself what you can do better than your competitors in order to get ahead.
Get In Touch
What’s your take on the best methods of getting ahead of your ecommerce competition? Are you working on finding the best ways to crush your competitors? If you are, and you’ve got a project in mind, please feel free to contact Ecommerce Pro Today! We love to discuss the future plans of online business ventures and to share practical solutions to help you meet your ecommerce and dropshipping business goals.
The E-Commerce Checklist
We have listed down the best practices in a checklist to ensure that your online business is ready for launching.