Did you know e-commerce sales grew by 18% in 2020?
The e-commerce industry is growing at a frantic pace, and you might want to get in on the action. However, before you launch your store, you might want to learn about the challenges people face in this industry.
Keep reading, and you’ll discover some of the common e-commerce challenges people run into. If you finish this post, you’ll understand how to avoid some of the common problems that affect most e-commerce businesses.
Dealing With Customer Support
One of the most challenging aspects of running an e-commerce store is dealing with customer support inquiries.
After all, people will be sending you questions all day and every day. If you don’t respond to these questions you might lose a sale, and you could even get a negative review!
Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to ensure the customer service side of your business doesn’t fall to pieces.
For one, you need to carve out some time in your day that’s dedicated to customer support inquiries. Doing things this way will ensure that customer support tickets don’t pile up.
Another way you can limit customer support issues is by making use of ‘chatbots.’
If you put a chatbot on your website, potential and existing customers can use it to solve their issues. This will then reduce the amount of ‘manual’ customer service work you need to do.
If you want to set up your chatbot properly, you will first need to identify some of the common issues customers have. Upon identifying these issues, you can then create chatbot sequences that aid people with these challenges.
This is just a small insight into the huge number of customer experience problems you may run into when running an e-commerce store.
If you want to learn more about the different kinds of e-commerce customer experience challenges you may encounter, read this post.
Managing Website Problems
Website problems are often one of the main things you’ll need to focus on in regards to e-commerce troubleshooting.
This is generally because your website is the main part of your business, and there are lots of things that can go wrong.
The most common issue you might have to deal with is slow loading times.
Fortunately, you can fix slow websites by using the PageSpeed Insights tool. This is a free tool created by Google that’ll provide you with some tips on how you can speed up your website.
If you own an e-commerce store, you also need to make sure your website works well on a mobile device.
Now, if you use a platform like Shopify, it shouldn’t be too hard to find a theme that works well on a mobile device.
One of the great advantages of using Shopify is that it has a wide collection of in-house apps and tools to help business owners optimize their stores and increase the sale of their products. Apps like Tada are designed specifically to increase your store’s subscribers by allowing your visitors to play a fun, engaging game to win a discount in exchange for their email address. With Tada’s Gamified and full-screen pop-ups, you can increase subscribers by 500% and sales by 135% instantly and it will also help in reducing the rate of shopping cart abandonment.
However, over time, you will need to make changes to your website.
No matter how big the change is, you should always check your website on a mobile device after making alterations.
That’s because even small changes can sometimes ‘break’ your website. If you just assume everything looks good, when it actually doesn’t, you might end up missing out on sales.
Dealing With Suppliers
When it comes to e-commerce issues, dealing with suppliers is another problem you will run into.
One of the main e-commerce problems you’ll face here is finding a supplier you can rely on.
Fortunately, if you use a platform like Alibaba, you can see the reviews of a supplier before you work with them. You can then use this information to sort the good suppliers from the bad.
A lot of e-commerce business owners also run into issues with stock shortages.
Dealing with stock shortages can be tricky, but there are a couple of ways you can tackle this challenge.
For one, a lot of people tend to order stock, only when their current supply has run out. This is understandable if you’re running a new e-commerce store with ‘untested products.’
However, if you’re dealing with a popular product, you might want to consider ordering stock before you need it.
After all, if the product is selling well, you shouldn’t run into too many issues if you stock up in advance.
You might also want to consider the option of working with a local supplier instead of an international one.
This is often a good idea because working with foreign suppliers means that you will have to deal with long shipping times.
If you work with a local supplier, though, products won’t have to travel that far, and thus shipping times will be faster.
A lot of e-commerce businesses also tend to run into cash flow issues.
There isn’t really a specific reason that causes businesses to run into this issue, and it can happen even if you’re careful with your finances.
Either way, if you find yourself in this position, you might not be able to order stock.
However, you might be able to address this problem by asking suppliers to agree to NET30 payment terms. If they agree to this, you will then have 30 days to pay your suppliers.
This will then help you order stock, even if you can’t pay for it at the present moment in time. This will help keep your business ticking along, even if you do hit some short-term cash flow problems.
Do You Know How to Deal With These Ecommerce Challenges?
This post has covered a list of common e-commerce challenges that you might run into when you launch a store.
This list isn’t exhaustive, and there’s a good chance you might run into something that isn’t mentioned here. Fortunately, though, there are lots of Facebook groups out there that offer e-commerce advice.
If you join one of these groups, you should be able to tackle your e-commerce issue, even if it is relatively obscure.
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