As an eCommerce business owner, understanding your customer's online behavior is key to creating a successful online retail experience. By observing and analyzing how shoppers browse, search for products, compare prices, and ultimately decide to purchase from you, you can use this data to optimize every step of their journey—ultimately increasing conversions on your website and boosting revenue. In this blog post, we'll provide some valuable techniques that can help you gain insights into customer preferences and strategies for leveraging what you learn about their behavior to improve their shopping experience and keep them coming back.
What Is Online Consumer Behavior?
Online consumer behavior studies how people interact with businesses and each other while shopping or considering a purchase online. The main focus is understanding why people buy what they buy and how they make decisions when shopping online.
Some factors that affect online consumer behavior include perceived risk, perceived value, trust in the brand or merchant, ease of use, social influences, and perceived needs. By understanding these factors, businesses can create a more compelling online strategy that will result in more sales and happier customers.
Online shoppers could have different requirements, and the sheer scale of access to online shopping emphasizes the need for evaluating online shopper behavior continuously. However, the new factors driving the behaviors of online consumers emphasize essential aspects such as affordable shipping, product availability, and delivery transparency. Most importantly, consumers seek convenience in their online shopping experiences, which plays a vital role in ensuring the loyalty of consumers to specific brands.
5 Online Behaviors
The different elements in consumers' online behavior can be confusing for businesses. How can you determine the critical factors of online shopping behavior which can help your business? For example, a survey has suggested that around 78% of consumers emphasize convenience as an essential value benefit in online shopping.
At the same time, around 81% of online consumers look for uninterrupted access to shopping platforms across multiple devices. Amidst consumers' evolving preferences, it is essential to identify distinct online behaviors such as the following.
1. Understand How Customers Behave When They're Shopping Online
One of the first aspects in identifying consumer behavior across online shopping platforms is that an online consumer differs from one visiting a physical store. The impact of consumer behavior on online shopping is evident in the availability of multiple alternatives. What do customers look for in an online shopping store? The essential highlights of the store include the design aesthetics and page layout.
Market research is an essential tool for learning about your customers. You can learn more about consumer behavior online through an evaluation of the demographics of your target audience. The other important aspect for understanding consumer behavior is the problems of consumers solved by your products or services.
2. Identify The Difference Between Impulse And Planned Purchases
Another critical detail in learning about consumer behavior for eCommerce shopping emphasizes the differences between types of online customers. You can broadly classify the types of online shoppers into two categories, i.e., impulse buyers and consumers buying with a plan. The primary difference between the customers depends on the product they focus on, such as trending products that can fetch impulse buyers easily.
Furthermore, impulsive shopping behaviors are primarily guided by emotions, and advertisements significantly impact such decisions. The emotional relevance of promotions for a specific product or service help in driving impulse purchases. On the other hand, planned purchase behavior emphasizes on evaluation of the necessity of a product before purchasing it. Planned purchase is an inevitable highlight for premium products such as electronic appliances and cars. Consumers are likely to spend more time researching products with planned purchase behavior.
3. Learn What Influences A Customer's Purchase Decision
The trickiest part of identifying online consumer behavior refers to online shoppers' evolving requirements and preferences. Consumers seek new value advantages in online shopping with a specific emphasis on better user experiences. What are the critical factors which influence user experiences and their decisions? While convenience and easy access to online shopping facilities across multiple devices are essential consumer needs, businesses need to reinvent customer support.
The resolution of customer queries, easy returns, and effective service delivery is essential for strengthening customer support. Businesses could also influence the online shopping behavior of consumers with seamless payment options. Another crucial factor influencing online consumers' purchase decisions is the assurance of fast and reliable delivery. Almost 95% of consumers believe speedier delivery options are mandatory for online shopping platforms.
4. Know Where To Find Your Target Audience
The next highlight in identifying consumer behavior on online shopping platforms is where you can find your target audience. The online landscape is a massive ground on which businesses can explore different platforms to find a target audience for their products and services. Social media channels are one of the biggest platforms for identifying consumer requirements and obtaining feedback. Businesses can explore the best way to determine the places to find their target audience with an overview of their consumer personas.
5. Track Customer Behavior So You Can Improve Your Ecommerce Store
Most businesses assume that the assessment of consumer behavior online is a one-time task. However, it is essential to monitor consumer behavior consistently to ensure that your eCommerce store grows along with customer expectations. Feedback and product recall are crucial factors that help track online customer behavior. In addition, other metrics, such as website traffic and conversions, can also help you monitor customer behavior with quantifiable results.
How To Meet Online Shopping Expectations
The assessment of the shopping behaviors of customers could help you determine a clear impression of consumer expectations. Online behavior of consumers can help you understand the complex and evolving trends fuelled by customers. Here are some of the proven recommendations for addressing the online shopping expectations of consumers.
Consumers expect convenient and transparent shipping options from all online shopping platforms. Any eCommerce store offering faster and cheaper delivery would be the priority of consumers.
Personalized Shopping Experiences
The next crucial factor affecting online shopper behavior is personalization. Customers should receive product recommendations tailored to their needs and previous purchases without having to search for hours. A cross-channel marketing platform could help offer the inputs for developing personalized shopping experiences for customers.
Selling on Multiple Platforms
The easiest way to increase the reach of your products or services among customers would be to sell on more platforms. Selling on multiple platforms offers the convenience buyers demand from online shopping platforms.
Simpler Return Processes
The customer journey continues after the purchase, and the quality of after-sales service and support are essential buyer expectations. One of the best ways to improve customer support and assistance is to focus on simpler return processes. Businesses can leverage fulfillment services to enable customers to create return shipping labels alongside tracking returns from a single dashboard.
Draw Attention to Reviews
All types of online shoppers search for product information and reviews before making the final purchase decision. Around 38% of customers believe that online reviews are critical for deciding whether to buy a product. Therefore, it is essential to place your thoughts in easily identifiable locations.
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Online Consumer Behavior FAQs
What motivates people to shop online?
There are a variety of reasons that people shop online, but some of the most common include convenience, price, and selection.
Convenience is a big draw for online shoppers, as it's often much easier to find what you're looking for and make your purchase from the comfort of your own home than it is to do so in a physical store. Additionally, many online retailers offer free shipping on orders over a certain amount or within a specific time frame, which can be another incentive to shop online.
Price is also frequently a factor in people's decisions to shop online. In many cases, online retailers offer lower prices on items than physical stores, especially when those items are not currently in stock. Additionally, many online retailers offer coupon codes and discounts that can be applied to purchases, which can help save even more money in the long run.
Finally, the selection is another significant factor for people when it comes to shopping online. Many online stores carry far more items than physical stores, making it easier to find exactly what you're looking for. Additionally, those stores may have things from all over the world that aren't available locally. As a result, shoppers can find unique items and products not found in their local area. These factors contribute to why so many people shop online rather than at physical stores.
How do online shoppers choose what to buy?
There are a few different factors that online shoppers consider when choosing what to buy:
- Price: Online shoppers typically compare prices across different websites to find the best deal.- Reviews: Online shoppers often read reviews before making a purchase. This helps them decide whether or not they want to buy the product.
- Availability: Online shoppers often choose products that are available in stock and can be shipped quickly.
- Selection: Online shoppers often prefer to shop from websites that offer a wide selection of products.
- Customer Service: Good customer service can be a deciding factor for online shoppers who want to feel supported throughout their purchase.
- Ease of Use: Online shoppers appreciate websites with an easy-to-navigate layout and clear instructions on making a purchase.
- Security: Customers are more likely to trust websites with robust security measures, such as encryption or secure payment methods.
What factors influence online consumer behavior?
There are a variety of factors that influence online consumer behavior, including:
-The perceived value of the product or service
-The quality of the product or service
-The price of the product or service
-The convenience of the purchase process
-The customer service experience
-word of mouth marketing
-User reviews and feedback
-The visibility of the product or service on search engines
-The use of promotional offers to encourage purchases
-The level of interactivity offered by the website.
How does the online shopping experience differ from in-store shopping?
There are a few main ways that online shopping differs from in-store shopping. For one, online shoppers can usually find a more comprehensive selection of products than what's available in the store. This is because online retailers typically have a more extensive inventory than brick-and-mortar stores.
Secondly, buying items online is often more convenient than going to physical stores since customers can shop from their homes without worrying about fighting through crowds or finding parking spots.
Thirdly, online prices are cheaper than retail prices since eCommerce companies don't have the exact overhead costs as brick-and-mortar stores (e.g., rent, employees, utilities). Additionally, online retailers often have sales and special offers that physical stores need to match.
Finally, many online shops offer free shipping or other incentives to entice customers to shop with them. This is something that brick-and-mortar stores need help to provide.
What are some common complaints about online shopping?
1. You can't touch or feel the product before you buy it.
2. Sometimes, the product doesn't look or feel like the one in the online photo.
3. You may not be able to return the product if you dislike it or it doesn't fit
4. It can be hard to find customer reviews of products before you buy them.
5. Shipping can be slow and expensive.
How do online retailers increase customer satisfaction?
Online retailers can increase customer satisfaction by tailoring their online shopping experience to the interests of consumers. Online businesses can meet the expectations of their consumers through different best practices, such as flexible payment options and personalized buying experiences. Other proven methods for meeting customer expectations include faster delivery, more straightforward returns, and flexibility for purchasing the retailer's products on multiple platforms.
What are some common scams associated with online shopping?
There are a few different types of scams that you should be aware of when shopping online:
The "bait and switch ."This is when a retailer advertises a low price for a product, but the price has been raised when you purchase the product.
The "free trial" offer. This is when a company offers you a free trial of their product, but once the trial period is over, they start charging you for the product.
The "phishing" scam. This is when you receive an email from a company asking for your personal information, such as your name, address, and credit card information. The email may look legitimate, but it is a scam to get your personal information.
The "advance fee" scam. This is when someone offers you an advance payment for something they promise to deliver later. However, once you pay them the money, they never deliver on their promises, leaving you with nothing.
The "pyramid scheme ."This is when a company lures people in by claiming they can make money quickly and easily by signing up for their program. However, these schemes only benefit the person at the top, and those who sign up often lose all of their money without ever seeing any returns.
How can online shoppers protect themselves from fraud?
There are a few things online shoppers can do to protect themselves from fraud:
-Only shop on websites that have a secure connection (look for the https:// in the URL) and that have been verified by a credible third party.
-Never enter your credit card information into a website you don't trust.
-Regularly check your credit card statements for fraudulent charges.
-Use a credit card instead of a debit card when making online purchases since you can dispute fraudulent charges with your credit card company.
-Make sure to keep your computer's security software up to date and be vigilant about phishing scams (emails or websites that trick you into revealing your personal information).
-In case of a fraudulent charge, contact your bank immediately to dispute the charge and report any suspicious activity.
-Only provide necessary information when making an online purchase, such as your name, address, phone number, and credit card information. Avoid providing unnecessary personal details online.
-Be sure to read reviews about the website or seller before making a purchase. Researching their reputation can help you avoid potential scams.
-If there is ever any doubt about the legitimacy of a website or seller, do not make any purchases from them. It's better to err on the side of caution than to take risks with your money or personal information.
To summarize, gaining insights into your customers' online behavior is critical for the success of your eCommerce business. By understanding how users interact with your store and their buying habits, you can make informed decisions to create a better user experience. Additionally, it's essential to stay ahead of the competition by offering innovative products that cater to current customer trends. By following the strategies outlined in this blog post, you'll be able to gain valuable insights into your customers and drive more revenue through targeted marketing campaigns. If you need help fulfilling orders for your eCommerce business, Simpl is here to help. We offer same-day shipping on various products so you can deliver them to your customers quickly and efficiently. Get in touch with us today to learn more about our services.
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