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Ecommerce customer survey report: combatting the industry challenges

What challenges impact the ecommerce industry and how can you overcome them according to your customers?

With advancements in technology, the ecommerce industry has become an intensely competitive space.

As an ecommerce business, you are bound to face competition from not just industry giants but also from nascent brands that are coming up as we speak. As a result, you are in for a tough ride, especially when it comes to attracting and engaging buyers and reducing cart abandonment rates.

We interviewed 1,000 online consumers from the US and the UK on their buying habits and their experiences with the current ecommerce enterprises.

This allowed us to understand the challenges that ecommerce enterprises face and how you can build strategies and tactics to counter these challenges.

You can download the full VWO eCommerce Consumer Survey Report 2017.

This ecommerce report addresses different challenges including:

  • Market expansion (omnichannel and international commerce)
  • Personalized customer experience
  • Mobile optimization
  • The power of reviews
  • Logistics (order fulfillment and multiple seller’s catalogue)

Expanding your ecommerce business

Expansion is the core of any eCommerce business. It is one of the most crucial pieces of the puzzle when it comes to shaping up a profitable business model for your venture. Various eCommerce businesses struggle with expanding and attracting relevant customers.

The report highlights the following major expansion tactics:

  • Omnichannel shopping experience is on the rise: 51% of consumers in the US and UK agree to the fact that their buying experience is a mixed bag of their offline and online activities. Hence, forging a closely knit omnichannel environment for your consumers plays an important role for expanding your business.
  • Consumers are open to buying from international stores online: 56% of consumers accepted the fact that they have bought from online markets overseas and another 31% are willing to give it a go.
  • Overseas ecommerce operations had led to the creation of new logistics channels altogether: As global expansion allows you to access a large and diverse group of untapped buyers, ecommerce businesses are focused toward tackling logistics pain points. This has led to increased investment toward creating affordable and effective logistical channels.

Tackling low conversion rates

In the past 2–4 years, the ecommerce industry has seen a shift in the conversion paradigm. Conversion is no more about product availability and incoming traffic. It has gradually shifted toward the quality of experience offered to your visitors and customers.

Personalization based on browsing history

The findings shared in our report have only reinforced the importance of customer experience in the eCommerce space.

  • Personalization is the first step to impeccable customer experience: Amazon credits user personalization and customer experience for bringing in 31% of revenue for its ecommerce arm. According to our survey, 36% visitors agree that it’s likely they would buy a product recommended based on their browsing history or previous purchases.
  • The consumer world has moved to a mobile-first paradigm: About 47% of consumers in our study agreed that their device-of-choice for buying products has been mobile devices. Therefore, optimizing your mobile presence is as important as your web presence.
  • Providing a hassle-free checkout process: When it comes to eCommerce, the highest customer drop-off point is the checkout page. Hence, ecommerce enterprises should build a hassle-free and smooth checkout process to boost their conversions.

The findings shared in our report have only reinforced the importance of customer experience in the eCommerce space. Personalization is the first step to impeccable customer experience: Amazon credits user personalization and customer experience for bringing in 31% of revenue for its ecommerce arm. According to our survey, 36% visitors agree that it’s likely they would buy a product recommended based on their browsing history or previous purchases. The consumer world has moved to a mobile-first paradigm: About 47% of consumers in our study agreed that their device-of-choice for buying products has been mobile devices. Therefore, optimizing your mobile presence is as important as your web presence. Providing a hassle-free checkout process: When it comes to eCommerce, the highest customer drop-off point is the checkout page. Hence, ecommerce enterprises should build a hassle-free and smooth checkout process to boost their conversions.

Striving toward Logistical Efficiency

A lot of ecommerce enterprises lose their customers due to lack of logistical capabilities. This has lately become an additional area for innovation in the ecommerce industry. The report also covers in depth how logistics impact conversions in the ecommerce industry.

  • 30% of respondents said a fixed date of delivery increases the likelihood of making a purchase
  • Almost all of respondents (95.78%) said they compare similar products from different sellers before buying

ecommerce logistics

In the Report

VWO’s eCommerce Consumer Survey report has been written keeping in mind the primary challenges that ecommerce enterprises are facing and the ways in which they are combating them.

This report provides in-depth insights on the challenges that the current ecommerce industry faces. The report also includes swift methods that can help you combat the challenges that come directly from seasoned ecommerce professionals.

The ecommerce Consumer Survey report intends to enable ecommerce practitioners with hands-on experience in managing and growing the ecommerce channel to add more to their skills.

Download the full report here.

By Carolanne Mangles

I am Smart Insights' Digital Marketing Executive and Blog Editor - I write on a range of topics - SEO, Analytics, Content Marketing and Digital Marketing Strategy and Planning - to bring you the best advice on all things new in Marketing. You'll also find me traveling and exploring new parts of the world when I'm not writing. Connect with me on LinkedIn or follow me on Twitter

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