Buying online is now a custom for many consumers, a concrete and effective alternative to the classic shopping in the physical point of sale. But until a few years ago, things were very different: very few consumers made use of this system.
Today many resistances deriving from the lack of confidence in the security of an online transaction have largely disappeared, but there are still many doubts about other aspects of e-commerce. At the same time, users understand that buying online offers benefits that the physical store cannot give. So let’s see the main advantages and disadvantages perceived by users in reference to e-commerce and internet purchases.
The advantages of buying online:
Shop open 24/7
One of the main benefits that consumers choose to shop online for is the ability to shop at any time of the day or night.
Ability to compare prices to choose the most convenient
When you buy online it is possible in a few clicks to visit different sites that sell the same desired product and choose the one that has the best price.
Physically going to a store can take a long time. Sometimes after all the effort, the product sought is not present or not convincing. Thanks to the online purchase you save time, because what you are looking for is just a click away.
Great variety of choice also of niche products
The network is full of virtual shops that can be ‘visited’ in a very simple way, offering the consumer the opportunity to really find exactly what they want. Even when it comes to products that are difficult to find or completely absent in your city, the web offers a way to find and buy them.
Avoid the crowds
Coping with the crowd is one of the downsides of buying from a brick and mortar store. The shopping malls are packed with people; long queues can be encountered at the checkouts.
Disadvantages of buying online
Inability to see and physically feel the object
One of the main disadvantages of buying online is the inability to see, touch, smell and physically try the item you want to buy.
Delivery times too long
Sometimes the couriers responsible for the delivery of products purchased online can take many days to deliver the item. This can create resistance from consumers in purchasing products online.
Need to buy a very valuable product
Products that are too valuable, such as engagement rings or cars, are generally not bought on the web. For these products, the purchase in the physical store is still preferred.
Difficulty of the return process of unsatisfactory goods
Consumers have reported feeling reluctant to purchase online due to the complicated process of returning newly bought merchandise. This barrier can be overcome by clarifying the return mechanism and offering continuous customer support.
Lack of trust in e-commerce systems
A portion of the consumers interviewed said they did not trust the security systems associated with e-commerce. Comparing this figure with the same one a few years ago, a sharp decline in the percentage is noted. If less than a decade ago one in two users admitted that they did not trust, today the rate has dropped to 13%.
Need to talk to a salesperson
Finally, some consumers have declared that they do not rely on online shopping systems because they feel the need to confront a salesperson before proceeding with the purchase. To overcome this problem, chat systems can be implemented in the company site that allow the prospective customer to have a safe guide in the conversion process.
Companies that want to successfully carry out e-commerce activities must take all these aspects into account, both in the creation of a functional and user-friendly site, and in the planning of specific marketing activities that serve to support sales and customer loyalty.
The mere creation of a site, however optimal it may be from a technological point of view, is not enough to obtain significant revenues from e-commerce. A number of strategic relationship activities with customers are needed in order to make them aware of the site and the products offered and induce them to buy thanks to effective commercial actions.
Among the most valid actions are those based on Social Media Marketing, which can lead a company to establish a strong, direct and lasting relationship with its current and potential customers. To acquire the skills that allow you to make the most of social media to grow the business of the company, it is very profitable to train some people in the company through valuable courses.