The modern consumer has access to many devices to use for shopping online including smartphones, tablets, and/or computers. These consumers are also always connected and may choose to shop at any time during the day. This 24/7/365 Internet access makes it easy for consumers to do price comparisons or read reviews in order to make a highly informed purchase decision. To compete in today’s market, businesses are challenged with delivering the strongest online user experience possible in order to stand out against their competition.
Since today’s consumer is device-driven, ensuring a web store functions seamlessly across devices is a top priority in order to deliver a strong user experience. The best way to execute this is through an eCommerce website built using responsive web design, a technology that takes all the content across a website – text, images, navigation – and resizes and reorganizes it to best fit the screen size of the device a consumer is using.
In addition to delivering a strong user experience across devices, there are certain features consumers have come to demand of a web store as eCommerce has become more widely accepted and used. For starters, web stores must now be easy to use and navigate. They must also deliver all the content a consumer might want in order to make a purchase decision, such as images with zoom, videos, product reviews, product comparison tools, social sharing tools and detailed text descriptions. The web store must further make it easy to add items to a shopping cart and pricing, including shipping and sales tax estimates, must be transparent. All these features are what consumers shopping in the retail space (B2C) have become acquainted with.
Not dissimilar are dealer (B2B) eCommerce sites. Since the B2B customer is also likely a B2C customer, it is recommended that B2B organizations mirror B2C websites in order to deliver the same type of experience today’s consumer has grown accustomed to. However, B2B orders online are often more complex than B2C orders. With that, B2B organizations are not only challenged to deliver a B2C eCommerce experience, but also unique logins per customer paired with custom catalogs and pricing. B2B customers may also have recurring orders or need to purchase a large number of SKUs that vary month-to-month. Therefore, another modern B2B eCommerce feature consumer demand is quick order entry with the ability to place orders by uploading a spreadsheet or by selecting from past orders.
Whether your organization follows a B2C or B2B selling model, eCommerce provides the convenience and self-service tools today’s modern consumer has come to expect. But, it’s more than just having a web store; businesses are challenged to deliver the modern features today’s consumer demands in order to standout against their competition.