The key is to set realistic customer expectations and then not to just meet them but to exceed them. Preferably in an unexpected and helpful way! - Richard Branson
In today’s digitalized and highly competitive world, most brands know the winning battle of customer’s success that depends on providing exceptional customer experience which is comparatively known as a new type of endeavor called customer success. In the present scenario, companies have to stand out by providing the best possible customer experiences and also investing significantly in customer success platform. The term customer experience doesn’t end when the customer can successfully use a product but actually what are their experiences about the product as they start using the product. The success of your business is completely intertwined on your customer’s success, if your customer gets success while using your product then your business will automatically succeed and that what’s customer success process is all about securing that your customer will purely satisfied after using your product. Have you ever thought about how you can help your customer to succeed in using your product in the short-term as well as in the long-term?
Implementation of the innovative ideas time to time
Real-time visibility about customer’s interest
Give customers a new way of experience like never before
By leveraging these three aspects, a business takes a distinctive approach to ensure its customers that will surely get benefit from continual use of the product. Customer experience basically means how a customer can get a better experience from your product and how companies can understand that their customers are getting a better experience. Alternatively, customer success helps companies to better understand the customer experience when the customers are habitual of using your product and services. Customer success focuses on the ways in which customer is using your product or services in an efficient way. To retain customer success for the long term it is better to understand the concepts of customer’s perspective of
And reading the interest of the customer to ensure that it will keep using your products and services
Customer experience is all about interaction about the product
Customer experience is defined as the interaction about the product with the customer and the environments in which the customer experiences like in online mode or physical mode. Customer experience does not limit only to interact with the product or services; it also means how the customer felt when he or she used the product for the very first time or for the next time. Through this process, the business will get to know whether the customer interactions meet the expectations and this way it increases customer loyalty and satisfaction towards the product or services.
Customer success is all about the relationship between business and customers
Customer success is defined as the relationship between the customers and business with the intention to make the customer fortunate and successful with the product or service they are using as well as to increase the customer’s lifetime value of using that product or service. Customer success is all about maintaining a relationship with the customers, optimal use of the product and most important to increase the customer’s success ratio of using the product and implementing the impressive customer success strategy to get to know about the product success & customer health metric and applying this data in the most efficient way so that a business can identify ways in which customer can use the product or services in a more productive way.
Customer experience is proactive in nature
Customer experience is proactive in nature it means that you can aim to experience your product or service to every customer. It is an approach in which you create or control a situation if the customer experience is not satisfied after using your product or service. It aims to stay with customers as long as they are with your brand or thinking about your brand. It is not a one-time interaction with the customers, it always tracks how likely a customer is experiencing and recommending your product to others.
Customer success is reactive in nature
It means that if the customer is not satisfied with your product then the customer success ratio plunges. Customer will show or give a response about the product or service whether they have liked your product or not. By their success ratio, a company can know about the perception and interest of the customer and can work according to retain and increase their customer success ratio by implementing innovative ideas to their products or services.
Customer experience is tactical
Customer experience is tactical because it involves all types of interactions which a business has done to know more about its brand or product. A customer’s experience always depends on the customer experience strategy that company wants to implement and through those strategies or strategies, the company will get to know about the impact, the customer is experiencing with their product because their strategies are aligned with the customer’s experience.
Customer success is product focused
Customer success means the customer’s outcome which comes after using the product or services. For instance, if the customers are not buying your product that means their experiences are not well off in buying and more importantly they are buying experiences about the product or services and ultimately it leads to mere product’s success whether it is exponentially increasing or reducing drastically.
There are various other metrics you can consider when reviewing customer experiences as well as customer success such as customer loyalty, customer satisfaction, product quality and one of the most important is customer success certification it helps businesses in analyzing customer success ratio and provides a framework to ensure that the companies are fulfilling customer’s expectations and reaching towards their desired business outcomes. Through this certification, a business can work across a customer line of business and allow them to develop and implement an innovative approach towards the high growth of the business.
It is 2019 and the ubiquitous chatbots need no introduction nor praise. They are everywhere. Chatbots also known as BOTS are the top trending technology that has impacted every segment and industry in the digital era. Review any “trends to watch out for” list for the past couple of years, and you are sure to find AI and Chatbot technology as the top contenders.
And one area that is slowly waking up to this reality is digital marketing. Artificial Intelligence, chatbot and digital marketing complement each other very well. If you haven’t started using bots for your online marketing, then check out these ways in which BOTs are revolutionizing customer interactions, real-time support, and online shopping:
The cornerstone of good customer experience online is quick resolutions and prompt responses.
Unfortunately, many businesses suffer because of poor response times. According to one survey, 62% of companies don’t even respond to customer service emails or if they do respond the average response time is 12 hours and 10 minutes.
With AI-based chatbots, marketers can now leverage an automated tool that provides a human-like customer interaction in real-time.
Some of the advanced chatbots seem to use more “human-like” terms and address queries like a pro. In the fast-paced, digital world where time is everything and customers lack patience, response time can make a significant difference.
Answer a wide range of questions
Track and fulfill orders
Resolve simple issues
In short, chatbots are increasingly being used for customer service to allow for a faster, instant contact. Chatbots offer timely, friendly advice on your company’s products or services to the customer so he/she doesn’t have to wait for days to hear back. This not only reduces your customer response rate but also helps companies in cutting down significant costs.
Optimize internet marketing opportunities by using Chatbots on Messenger
Marketers have realized the potential of using online bots to their eCommerce website and using Facebook’ s messenger bot on their business page. Using new chatbot APIs and message automation companies reach their customers via chat and generate revenue quickly.
Apart from communicating with the customers, bots can now do a variety of things like display images and descriptions, make bookings and confirm purchases. For example, KLM uses Facebook messenger for sending boarding passes and flight updates in Facebook chat. The live chat enables customers to get quick answers to their queries and requests and is seen as a huge leap in terms of customer service.
Similarly, Uber can book your car rides over Facebook messenger and this service can also be used independently from the Uber app.
Travel search engine Skyscanner launched a Facebook messenger Bot to provide potential customers with flight details, suggestions, hotels, and car hire information.
In fact, there is so much you can do by combining messenger with bot service:
Send instant or scheduled promotions
Website updates and event messages
Notify customers of their abandoned shopping cart
Customize product preference by asking relevant questions during their shopping
Send back in stock alerts
Enable them to see their previous order history
Businesses have only begun to scratch the surface of the real application and potential of using a chatbot for customer service.
One of the biggest advantages is the 24/7 availability of a chatbot. Your live chat employees need sleep but your chatbot doesn’t. Customers’ needs are not predictable and often arise out of the confines of business hours. What is the best way to address their queries when your support staff are away or unavailable? A well-designed chatbot is not only available 24/7, but it will also offer the comfort of a human-like conversation.
Smoother content journey on website
Today, digital marketing is all about designing the most seamless buyer journeys. The definite advantage of chatbot is that they can pop up on any page to offer additional information, videos or discount codes to convert your lead to a customer. Chatbots can also guide your shopper through this journey starting from their payment method, cross-selling/upselling, shipment preferences, etc.
AI-empowered technology like chatbot allows you to constantly innovate and break the monotony or digital fatigue. This is very useful in attracting new customers and generating revenue. The true genius of a BOT is that it can be used to drive eCommerce growth, increase your CTR, use it on landing pages, Slack, Skype, apps and much more. You can read more about this here.
To sum it up
As an online business or marketer, you can leverage this low-cost technology to constantly innovate and drive more conversions. If you are not using a chatbot already, then it is about time you analyze your strategy and make use of this great tech to improve your operations, connect with customers and increase your revenue.
It is obviously a true fact that in today’s digital world many people prefer to purchase online as it saves plenty of time and provide you an ample number of choices to opt for. Engrossed in their busy schedules and families people are looking for the convenience at affordable prices. If you want to quickly grab the customer’s attention then you to think something different from the crowd. Nowadays customers seek numerous options before buying, compare which product gives more benefit, its features and number of vital things so it is must for business owners to check out all the key points and upgrade their store experience to attract more customers.
Here are some of the most powerful tactics which you can follow to upgrade your store experience and make your customer experience wonderful.
•Optimized your website speed: To increase visitors on your website it is important to optimize your website speed whether it’s for mobile or for a laptop. Always focus to maintain the load speed of your website to a minimum that is less than a few seconds or less. If your website loads very slowly then the customer’s interests rapidly switch over to the next supplier without thinking out for a second. The foremost thing is to take care of your customer then automatically they will take care of you. A good impression will always give you subtle results. In order to get wonderful results, the website should be optimized fully and gives guaranteed top-notch results.
•Improve customer experience: In today’s competitive world customer become more informative and they become more information seeker so they want the precise information at a single click of a mouse and the business owners have only milliseconds to grab the customers’ attention within this period of time and if they are successful in this process then customer is all yours. Giving the customer the best service and always need to feel them valued and acknowledged will boost sales and increase conversion rates.
•Use of chatbot messenger: With the help of chatbot messenger, you can update your website with the latest trends and help you to reach to your target audience. Through the help of chatbots, you can get relevant queries from the customers and persuade them to buy what they demand. It is one of the most efficient tools that can simplify your complex tasks and attract the audience towards your product. Conversation chatbots can handle multiple queries at a time whether you are dealing with a complex problem or an easy one it is one of the amazing tools that give a quick solution to all your queries.
•Know your customer well and create product accordingly: Research meticulously on the customers’ preferences, what their perception about your online store or about your product. Find the answers and tailor your customers’ requirement accordingly. Doing so will not only give you bonus points but also increase your rapport in the minds of the customers. We completely understand that it is herculean task to keep an eye to every shopper especially when you are dealing with thousands of customers so it is essential to know who your regular customer is, identify your frequent shopper and maintain sound customer management tool so that you can easily grab the attention of the other customers as well.
•Improve your quality framework: Give the pristine training to your employees so that they can handle their customers efficiently well. Identify the training requirement of your customer support team and work accordingly. Assess their quality of calls they are taking, how efficiently they are greeting the customers, how promptly they are solving their queries and giving the best satisfactory solution so tracking your team development is essential to entice more customers.
•Focus on customer reviews: Customer reviews are the most vital things to consider. If customer reviews are positive then it can increase your brand’s image and boost your sales accordingly because it is considered as the most essential resource for the new customers to when they decide to purchase. The rating and review options make it accessible to every customer and it can leave a positive image among the audience.
•Maximize your geographic reach: To upgrade your store experience it is essential to maximize your geographic reach. Create a virtual version of your store so that you can incredibly extend the shopping experience of your customers and even to the ones’ who are beyond your geographical reach. Walk with the latest technology, create optimize mobile apps that allow customers to browse the product online with ease. Through this way, it makes the customers more informative about the product and helps in their buying decision.
•Intensify the product experience: It is one of the vital points to consider as allowing the customers to see ins and outs of the product makes customers more confident in making a decision during the pre-purchase phase. There needs to be an efficient customer experience strategy in order to adhere to a satisfied and happy customer which is surely going to benefit you in the near future. Always ask your customers not only how much they like your product or services but also what they didn’t like about the product so that you can get a clear idea in which field you have to improve more. One of the prominent ways to achieve this is to conduct online surveys which are a reliable and time-saving technique to work closely and profoundly with your customers. These surveys tools are not meant to collect feedbacks but also generate quality of reports for analysis purpose.
These are some of the essential points to upgrade your store experience and improve customer experience incredibly. As of now, the customers become more informative, empowered and their expectations are higher than ever so it is vital to put extra efforts to allure the customers’ attention otherwise you will lag behind in the line of competitors.
According to the studies it has been seen that people are more online savvy than a few years back. Majority of the people shop online once or twice in a month as more varieties are available and it saves their plenty of time. This way, your eCommerce business is running in full swing with higher pace and wants higher growth expectations. To improve your eCommerce conversion rate with less cost investment can generate high revenue and gives you numerous benefits. It’s positive for a business to convert even their 2% of visitors so that they can achieve higher conversion rates with more sales. Here some of the important factors that define more manageable ways to address the areas that need more focus and improvement.
1. Do your website has live chat feature?: Live chat is one of the most substantial tools that helps in increasing your conversion rates and proffer you with the fastest rate of return on investment that you ever dreamed off. For any eCommerce website owner, live chat is a tool that can provide complete customer satisfaction as well as improve conversion rate. With the help of the live chat, you can easily know about customer’s preferences, manage their orders, and provide a timely response. Live chat gives you the option to reach to the buyer’s decision promptly and can build a rapport with your customers online.
2. Optimized your website speed and performance: It has been observed that the faster your website the better the conversion rate. Thousands of customers are seeing your website content and you are sharing substantial resources with them. To have a quality web hosting in your website will lead to boost up your sales and gives you a guaranteed speed increase.
3. Make your website home page impressive: Have you ever thought what your website home page defines? Every time a person lands on your website’s homepage it should define clear value proposition it means your homepage should be the index pillar which defines what your company does, how it does differently, and who does it. Today online customers are more demanding. To stick to your product they need reasons. By creating your home page responsive and video-centric gives you the opportunity to engage with your audience and achieve high conversions.
4. Create impressive videos: Creative videos have a great and long-lasting impact on the consumer’s mind. Nowadays customers’ preferences have switched from audios to videos they are more likely to see demanding videos which help them to make a decision before buying a product. To create videos is not at all expensive tasks even you can create with your mobiles and show it to the world. For any eCommerce website, it is necessary to publicize your product through videos so that it captivates the customers’ attention more quickly.
5. Make your eCommerce website responsive: In responsive websites, the designs and developments are made according to the user’s behavior and can be resized itself depending on the type of devices it is being viewed. If your website is responsive then it automatically adjusts according to your device and pictures can be seen easily and clearly to the customers and will not distort the layout.
6. Put good quality product image on your website page: Yes it is absolutely true that a subtle product image reflects your brand’s image and gives you Increase eCommerce Conversion. Your product image should be the one which says all about your product at once. This is one of the very important points to consider engaging your potential buyers to your product page.
7. Short and crispy product description: When the image quality is remarkable then the product description should also imposing it will create a huge impact on customers. The best way to write description is to write according to your customer’s preferences and then highlights the merits of the product and also focus on the features and how it will be benefited to end consumers.
8. Display your customer reviews on your website: Nowadays most of the people first see reviews about the product and then they make the decision of buying it. The genuine reviews about the product influence the buying decision of the new customers. According to the survey it has been noted that the more positive reviews on the website the more it will increase the level of trust of your business.
9. Design alluring schemes: We all know that everybody loves discounts and lucrative deals. Those companies which provide more discounts and promotions it has been seen that customers are comparably more loyal and also refer to their friends and family. A planned and sublime promotion deals proffer you with more loyal customers and boost your sales as well.
10. Stimulate your Thank You Pages: It is very essential for the website owner that creating Thank you Pages gives their business an opportunity to build their relationship more robust. After each purchase, there should something for the customer through which he or she feels amazing. Put your imagination and think out of the box and leave your customer with some stupendous surprises.
These are some of the ways through which you will get high eCommerce conversion rate with less cost investment. Implementing these ways will surely do a great job for you as increasing viewers on the website is not the only task to complete but also how to manage and pursue those viewers to engage with your product is an important job to accomplish. We know that your business is valuable and maintain the integrity of your brand is the utmost thing for you. No matter what approach you implement to make sure that your approach leads towards betterment and improve your e-commerce conversion rates efficiently and effectively. Once you have received high conversion rates move onto the areas of improvement in which you can do much better and keep on going until you have reached to the zenith of the success.
How many of you remember the American fugitive— Edward Snowden?
Edward Snowden— the whistleblower, the big-hearted informant, and the CIA employee— he stepped forward to save the humanity from NSA and the State authority’s surveillance.
Overnight, Edward turned into a villain for the significant populace of America, and the same night, he was revered for his heroics by the other parts of the world.
But what was all the fuss about?
Was it worth risking his life?
The answers vary according to the ideological priorities; however, the primary question which we need to answer is— are we willing to be tracked?
Even if we don’t know the answer, we have agreed to get tracked long back.
When we agree to step into the internet— the epitome of the public domain— we already leave our traces or digital footmarks.
I still have a fresh memory of how I tracked the timestamp, activation duration, login time, IP address, etc. of my clients when I made a college project.
Let’s not talk about the intention of tracing the details.
However, for the ones who call digital tracing as a breach of privacy, let me burst your bubble— you have realized it too late.
We have been clinging with micro-habits for tracing client-side details from our schooldays, and if you realize it now— you are too weak a rationalist.
Dissecting Google Tracking
So, when it comes to tracing your digital habits— nothing beats Google with Facebook at the distant second.
Think of scenario… You go to Google. You put your search query. “How to treat Ac..” Now you wait for the search engine to reflect possible query strings. After a few seconds, you pour your frustration because it doesn’t show the probable search queries. You curse Sundar Pichai and Larry Page for poor service, and you switch to Bing or Safari.
That’s how Google works without stashing your data.
Had it stored all the search queries, it would have displayed “How to treat acne or acid attack, or anything which matches the search result.”
And it is why it says “We want to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful.”
Google has more than 200 services, and you leave your symbol on each one of them.
The higher number of Google products you use, the more familiar it gets with you and your personality.
Let’s look at further details of how Google traces Ron— a writer who uses some of the basic but useful products from Google to simplify his day to day life.
● Scene 1
It’s four in the morning when Ron wakes up abruptly— disrupting his Circadian rhythm. His subconscious mind asks him to check the score of Roger Federer for the ongoing ATP tour. He pulls his android phone out of the drawer, pushes the Google Chrome button, and searches “Roger Federer Score” on the Google Search. He reads the score and other insightful news regarding the same until he comes across the phrase— “Roger Federer and his indomitable attitude.” The word “indomitable” attracts his diction and he presses the voice search by calling— “Hey Google, what is the meaning of indomitable?” He later dozes off. He wakes up by 07:12 am and drapes himself with the tennis gears (he also loves to play tennis). He turns on the Google Fit application and runs to the nearest tennis club where he has got zealous friends who equally admire tennis. They play, and by the end of the session, he decides to capture the moment by snapping a selfie with his friends. He returns to his home and leaves for his office the following afternoon. His office has co-writers who have different sets of belief. Ron is an atheist by choice whereas other colleagues hail from different “elite of faith.” Being politically and religiously sound, Ron indulges into political debates with co-workers. He supports the libertarian code of belief as he smears Hillary and Trump simultaneously with unbiased purview. He throws rational statistics by searching “how blockchain or gold standard supersedes the existing monetary system devised by the authority.” He quotes the concept of Utopian World described by George Orwell in his book. He finally seals the day by searching “best variety of Pizzas” on his phone.
What Google Tracks
Throughout the day, Ron uses multiple Google services.
Google Chrome— The browser for surfing and adding queries.
What it means: It stores the browsing history and displays the advertisement cookies.
Google Search Engine— For searching the score, pizza, political statistics.
What it means: The search engine stores everything you search. It knows your political alignment; it holds the detail about your religious practice; it acknowledges your personal choices.
Google Fit— For keeping the count of steps, calories burned, and other fitness goals.
What it means: Google knows how healthy are you. If you don’t use the application and search a lot about your health issues— it again knows how secure is your body defense system.
Google Photos: For snapping and storing the picture.
What it means: There’s a concept of labeling in Google Photos. It uses the AI-based photo-recognition technology to separate you from your friends and fellow humans.
Google Voice command— For strengthening the diction
What it means: As AI and ML are the pillars of Google, it saves your voice command to differentiate from others. Again, it is crucial especially when Voice-based applications have chipped-in real world.
● Scene 2
Ron is excited about the new cafe near his home. As he loves waffles, he thinks he’d eat them all every day. He goes to the cafe, gulps one and gets one packed for his office. He reaches his office, unpacks the other one and munches like an epicure. He repeats the same for the next three months until he realizes that his life has turned monotonous. It’s been three months since he hasn’t taken any vacation as he works like a programmed robot— every day. He’s living a pendulum life between office and home. As he sits quietly in the corner of his office, a sudden jolt of idea thwacks his head. He immediately plans a trip out to the European Union and searches for the suitable package. He sets up his itinerary and books his flight, hotel, and other traveling sources. He ultimately goes to bed with a satisfied mind frame. The next week he packs his bag and flies to Switzerland— his dream destination— credits to the Swiss Maestro— Roger Federer. He checks the beautifully sprawled Swiss mountains, Chillon Castle, Lake Geneva, Swiss National Park, etc. He also gives a glance to Federer’s glass mansion in the city.
What Google Tracks
For months, Ron has relied on several Google services.
Google Location Tracker— For locating geographical points like home and offices.
What it means: Google fortes in tracking the location of any person. When you use Google devices like Pixel and the operating system such as Android, you leave your geographical mark through location service. Google can determine your home and office by saving your location according to the time. The place where you spend your maximum day-time is got to be your office. Similarly, Google knows your home because that’s where you will spend your night and weekend. Personal devices like Android phones reveal much more about your location than laptops or lesser carried devices like Google Home.
Google place and preference tracker— For locating other places like the waffle cafe
What it means: Google is not restricted to measuring your home and office. It stores the places which you frequently visit. Based on your favorite cafe or theater, Google throws a coherent and catered advertisement.
Google Search Engine— For planning and booking the tour.
What it means: Google knows that you haven’t been to vacation in a long time. It also identifies your next trip. With Google Search Engine, you can let Google know about your dream destination.
Google location— For intercontinental reach.
What it means: Enough of your home, office, and cafes. Google also have information about your intercontinental traveling. Even before you start filling your travel diary, Google does it before you. It also knows where have you visited in other countries. The location service determines more information than you can imagine.
● Scene 3
Ron is waiting at the Zurich airport to return to his home, and he is about to seal his vacation. While he embraces the soft Dunlop of the sofa, he yanks out his phone, skims through his email and rolls his eyes through the contact list. He then composes a mail— “Hi, let’s catch tomorrow at the ‘meeting room 4’ by 10 am. The agenda of the meeting is to convert a few clients from the Swiss land. Thanks!”— and send it to his co-worker. He also sets up a reminder in the Google Calendar and places another group meeting by 2 pm on the Google Hangout. So, he is fresh and all geared-up to take professional challenges after the vacation. After setting up the quick meeting, he breathes out a sigh of relaxation and goes through the photo album. He labels and tags all the places on his phone until his flight departs from the location.
What Google Tracks
Amidst such a hectic tour, Ron still inputs his data on Google Services.
Gmail Contact List— For storing the list of all the connections
What it means: Gmail has been one of the oldest and most successful services of Google. It encapsulates all the information about the people with whom you interact. It also has details about your favorite person— the one with whom you communicate the most as they automatically segment down into the “frequently contacted” list. Gmail is more effective with Google devices like Android and Pixel. In such cases, the mailbox allows you to access the phone contact directly.
Google Calendar— For learning about the schedule, locating whereabouts, and reminding the meeting.
What it means: Google Calendar saves any information regarding your schedule. It hoards the data about the reminders, meetings, birthdays, anniversaries. Basically, whatever you want Google to remember for you. It uses the Google Location service to learn about your preferred meeting spots or particular birthday space.
Google Hangout— For being a connecting medium.
What it means: Akin to Gmail, Google Hangout knows who do you frequently contact. As it’s an active medium to connect, it reserves an enormous pile of conversation data which might include your whereabouts. There’s a belief that Google reads all the emails and chats. However, Google has committed not to read them and make wiser algorithms for targeting the specific audience.
Google Image Recognition and photo service— For tagging and recognizing all the places.
What it means: Although manual input helps Google to learn about a lot of places, Google image recognition algorithm is much more advanced than Google photo service. A lot of times Google suggests your face and name without explicit input. The basic working principle is— it maps the face and details with other applications like Picasa, Google plus, etc. and shows the result. With the way Google incorporates AI, it will surely recognize the background of the places you have visited without manual tagging.
● Scene 4
Ron is back to his usual and monotonously painted life. While working on his next project, he switches to Youtube to find a few things regarding the industry. Tempted by the movie trailer of “Once Upon A Time In Hollywood,” he binge-watches other Quentin Tarantino movies scenes and trailers and fritters away 45 minutes because YouTube shows a lot of interesting related videos. He somehow closes it and gets back to work. During the luncheon, he places his hand in his bag and pulls out the book— “The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand.” He is on the verge of completing the book, so he searches for the next Ayn Rand masterpiece on his Google Book. He assesses the price on the application and cross-verifies on Google Shopping. He finally decides to keep the soft copy of the book on Google Book. He then continues to finish the book and goes on to look for the recipe which he’d prepare for himself tonight. By the end of the day; he is a writer, a movie critic, and a fantastic chef— courtesy to YouTube. Also, Ron’s mother has a smartphone, but she doesn’t know how to operate YouTube. He asks her about what she wants to see on YouTube. She pronounces “Yoga Exercises” in a lilting voice. He inputs the string for yoga and hands over her phone. Now, when Ron is not around her, his mother doesn’t have to rely on Ron because YouTube understands her taste, and it shows the related videos which she just has to click without entering the input query.
What Google Tracks
Again, nothing is as involved as Google products in Ron’s life.
YouTube— For binge watching trailers, recipes, technical info, yoga exercises.
What it means: Although YouTube had no association with Google, Google ultimately bought it. YouTube records your search history and shows related videos. It prevents you from entering the search query as YouTube furnishes quick results of your interest and likings. It understands the music-genre you prefer, the taste of the films you like, and the cuisines you love.
Google Book— For predicting favorite writer
What it means: Google Book keeps track of all the books you have read and searched. It learns about your favorite artists and reflects the result which might interest you the next time you scroll through the book list. Instead of using Google Book, if you conduct your research on the search engine, Google is still aware of the choices you have and the decisions you make. It also tracks the kind of ads you press. By unifying all the data, it caters you the custom-book list.
Google Shopping— For assessing and comparing the price of the book.
What it means: Google shopping piles all the data related to your shopping query. It recognizes what you are looking for, and which product almost enticed you to make a purchase (by the click). When you use Google Shopping through the browser, it also understands your hand-picked retail brands.
Google Image Recognition and photo service— For tagging and recognizing all the places.
What it means: Although manual input helps Google to learn about a lot of places, Google image recognition algorithm is much more advanced than Google photo service. A lot of times Google suggests your face and name without explicit input. The basic working principle is— it maps the face and details with other applications like Picasa, Google plus, etc. and shows the result. With the way Google incorporates AI, it will surely recognize the background of the places you have visited without manual tagging.
● Scene 5
After cooking a delicious recipe the following morning, Ron hits his office. He unfolds his laptop, opens his personal blog space on the Wordpress, unlocks the Google Analytics, and rolls his eyeballs for scrutinizing the web traffic and other minute details such as bounce rates, average time spent, etc. related to the recently posted blog. As he goes through the analytics, a pop-up query informs him about the ad he placed about his company on the influencer’s page. He examines the query search and realizes that the potential customer is just under his nose. So, he tries hard to convert him. He connects with him personally and arranges a meeting at 4 pm in his office. He demands the address which he later searches on Google Map, and advances on to executing the meeting. He drives back home using the same Map and takes a satisfying sleep.
What Google Tracks
Well, Google is indirectly a vital entity in Ron’s Life.
Google Analytics— For scrutinizing the traffic and other details regarding the blog
What it means: With Google Analytics, Google fearlessly announces that “Yes, We collect data, and here’s all the data related to your website.” The ones who talk about breaching the privacy use Google Data Analytics at real-time to enhance the business. It tracks all the minor details of your customers and grants you extraordinary power to heighten your business.
Google Adsense— For targeting the audience.
What it means: Although Google Adsense empowers the website owner or YouTube page holders to allow the ads on their pages, it also read the trail of the queries and promotes it to the user.
Google Maps— For searching for the location and relocating oneself.
What it means: Google Maps have been one of the most utilized applications from Google. Based on what you scribble on the search bar, Google determines where you are heading, and what’s your mode of transportation. It also keeps an eye on when and where you’ve visited. As Google owns Waze— the offline GPS navigation software— it also keeps you in sight.
Isn’t it a great paradox that with whatever you search on Google, Google searches you?
With higher search queries, Google creates a distinct picture of you— the image which could give Google clearer insight for improving its services.
However, there is a belief that when the internet happened to the world, the entire network was the distributed network.
But with the ever-expanding rate and interminable data entry, the tech-giants like Google and Facebook have centralized the network.
The way data get dealt— it has become one of the necessary resources which you, I and our kind produce.
In today’s technological era the consumers have become more informative and technologically sound. With new advancements in technology, the consumers’ behavior patterns are changing. By a single click of the mouse button, one can get plenty of options available in front of them. Through this way, the emergence of technology has taken a new turn. It is substantial to know these technocrat customers’ preferences which are changing day by day and keep yourself updated and aware of all the ongoing developments in the market. How and why technology has changed consumer behavior in the digital era? Take a look at some of the few points which are vital to reviving your strategies to make a strong connection to your customers.
• Consumers’ needs have changed rapidly: Technology has completely changed the process of dealing in business the way it was a few years back. With the advancement of e-commerce and mobile phones or gadgets, customers can view the product anytime and anywhere. All these advancements have raised the customers’ expectation to a large extent. To be in the top list of business you have to keep running according to technological advancements and customers’ changed behavior or you will lag behind. Consumer behavior 2019 wants to get a prompt reply if they are purchasing something online and have a doubt regarding the product and if they do not get a reply then they even don’t give a second chance to change their perception and switch to the next supplier who is more active and understand customers’ behavior efficiently. A simple articulation of their dissatisfaction in social media will sway your business to the core.
• Shifting to new devices: The new era gadgets have given the customer the accessibility to access the information anytime and anywhere from their phones, tablets, and laptops. This means that your website should be updated from time to time and performs perfectly with each and every type of devices. Make sure that your website is optimized for viewing products online without any hassle and if it doesn’t load efficiently on phone then customers might avoid looking at other products too and switch their preference to other supplier or other websites. To create a responsive and optimized website will give you a number of leads and boost your business.
• Create sound communication channels: If we talk about the past channels they are not very effective like present days because they did not get the instant reply to their query and have to wait long for the emails but advancements in social media platforms brings innovative amendments like live chats where you can solve customer’s query within a second and get feedback as well. This way you can build your brand reputation in the minds of customers which can be spread to millions of people. With the social media tool, you can have an extensive data collection pool from which you can research meticulously and developed accordingly that result in the growth of your business and boost your sales as well.
• Reliability: To reach your content to the masses the best way is to read your audience well and see the changes in online consumer behavior. It’s not easy to determine what impact it will create in the minds of the customer and how frequently their demands are changing. But once you know your audience well and create content accordingly your content will be going to hit by a majority of people. Once the audience likes your post or content then they can do everything to reach out your content to the majority of people. It has been seen that there are various YouTube channels and blogs that have reached to the majority of audiences and look forward to the weekly updates so in simple terms, they are doing marketing for you. These followers are reliable and they like your content to a great extent. This is the reason they are waiting for your updates regularly and making your content reachable to other audience as well.
• Easy accessibility of information: A few years ago when technology was not so much developed than customers made their buying decision on the basis of news, advertisements or referrals from other people who have experienced it. But now new innovations in technology have completely changed the traditional methods. Customers can easily access the information about the product via the internet and decide accordingly. If you put more information about the product, the greater the chances you are creating for the customer of purchasing from you. By seeing the changing demands of the customers day by day the marketers, business owners are building their online presence and increase their reputation by asking feedback and reviews from the existing customers.
• Customers expectations increased rapidly: With the advancements in technology it has made easy to create businesses and many businesses offer products that fulfill the demands of the customers and as a result customers are filled with many choices so their expectations have gone up. Now they are looking for the product that fulfills their needs in all aspects this means that when they are looking to buy from you, they are seeing the number of needs of your customers that you fulfilling and how efficiently you are doing it. This is happening across the market in all the niches. If you want allure the customers and build your online presence in the market and look out innovative ways to meet out the customers’ expectations.
In this blog, we have seen how rapidly the consumer behavior is changing in terms of products what measures you have to determine while marketing the product and how efficiently you have to do it. We all know that technology has a great impact on influencing and changing consumer behavior. It has been studied that over a period of time consumer behavior has been completely influenced by information they are getting from the online channels. In the market where new technologies are emerging and evolution of consumer behavior every time, those businesses which fulfill the requirements efficiently are becoming the king of the market.
Mobile commerce, also known as M-commerce is the use of mobile devices and tablets for online transactions. It includes both eCommerce and online banking/payments categories. It is the eCommerce aspect that is very interesting for retailers and online vendors.
You may have heard that M-commerce sales are constantly on the rise. According to Statista, they will now make up 44.7% of the total eCommerce sales in the USA alone. More customers than ever are using their phones to do product research, compare pricing, rate vendors, read reviews and complete their online transaction.
If you are commuting and constantly on the go, then you know how well you can utilize that time to complete many tasks on your mobile phone - right from paying electricity bills or utility bills to purchasing groceries or shoes and clothes. Here are some advantages of mobile commerce:
Benefits of M-Commerce:
Mobiles provide an intimate experience. In this, they provide marketers to design their apps and sites in such a way that can personalize the experience for each shopper.
App developers and marketers can now use indexation tags that enable users to download your dedicated app from the search results. You can also assign URL schemes in deep app pages.
Your user base is already familiar with how tablets and mobile devices work. Click-happy customers know how to navigate their way around a mobile site or an eCommerce app. They don’t need to fire up the laptop; they can start shopping the minute they are ready.
Mobile also makes it easier for users to share their experiences on social channels, ask for recommendations etc. leading to a smooth shopping experience.
Certainly more effective than emails, push notifications are instant and hard to neglect when they pop up on your phone screen. This feature can drive customers to be more loyal and result in better conversions.
And with every passing year, mobile commerce continues to transform the way various sectors conduct their business. If you don’t want to get disrupted, you should pay close attention to the impact of m-commerce on these verticals.
M-Commerce and retail sectors:
E-Commerce apps: Ever visited a store and compared the on-shelf product pricing with online pricing? You are not alone. With the proliferation of eCommerce apps, each offering special pricing and festive discount, the temptation is too strong to make a purchase online. From clothes, electronics, gadgets, shoes, sporting apparel to bridal shopping, there is an app for every type of commodity. Some apps sell it all and do it rather well too.
Food Delivery: No longer ‘hangry’ moods. Tired of restaurant queues and not in the mood to cook? Mobile apps like Zomato, Swiggy, and UberEats have transformed the food delivery sector like never before. What’s best, you don’t even have to key in your location as GPS takes care of everything.
Holidays and Travel: Online travel marketplace has turned out to be the most lucrative of the lot. You don’t need to visit a travel agent or use your laptop to conduct research. Plan your holiday from start to finish, compare pricing, get air-fares at the lowest rates, book hotel, and car rentals and additional entertainment, all from the convenience of your phone.
Groceries: Virtual supermarkets have taken over the mobile. There are several dedicated smartphone apps that enable you to get on top of your grocery shopping right from list-making, pricing comparison, special offers, deals, and contactless payments. Customers can order online while on the go and even get same-day delivery.
On-demand services: Forgot to order flowers for your friend’s birthday? Leaky pipe flooding your basement? Luckily, the app for everything brings on-demand services to your fingertips. From salons to plumbers, florists to bakers, you can access professional services across sectors, easily.
Book a cab: The car/cab booking service was one of the frontrunners in the m-commerce game. Names like Uber, Ola and Lyft have become synonymous with cabs and we can’t frankly imagine a time when we had to go the old-fashioned way to hail a taxi! And now with GPS location mapping, contactless payments, ride-sharing, and several other features, the popularity is only going to grow.
On-demand alcohol delivery: Alcoholic beverage companies were never in direct connection with the customers, thanks to a multi-layered distribution system.
The beverages pass from creators to wholesalers and then finally to retailers where the customer's shop. Many services such as Drizly have disrupted this market. Want to celebrate with the finest wine? Order liquor from the best wineries using an app.
M-commerce disruption has affected the alcohol industry and the sales landscape has changed significantly. Producers are forced to focus more on differentiating their products and branding them well. Find out how the alcohol landscape has evolved in the last couple of years, thanks to digitization and eCommerce boom.
The upshot here? Practically no industry is unaffected by the m-commerce boom. All it can take for the tide to turn is a clever idea digitized and made mobile-ready for the customers. Have you prepared for the m-commerce revolution yet? If not, the time is right now.
“Alexa! Wake me up in the morning” has become one of the most common voice commands in many houses.
The people have steadily realized that Alexa deserves a place in their family trees; however, Alexa is a double-edged knife, and we got to explore the other side— the use of Alexa in business.
But before we dive further to discuss the nitty-gritty of it, we shall look at the timeline which established the reality of Alexa.
It all started in 1972 when Magnavox launched the first console home video game— “Magnavox Odyssey.”
It was the beginning of our interaction with the system through the interaction channel— console— the channel which used predefined syntax.
It’s been close to five decades now, and our interaction channel with the systems has leaped to the fifth generation.
The console channel evolved into GUI— with the introduction of desktops, the GUI medium made way for web applications— to further accommodate the emergence of smartphones, there was a paradigm shift towards the mobile apps— and at the current stage, we are interacting with the system through our voices.
To strengthen the claims, more than 40% of adults use voice command at least once in a day. 
With the interacting channel evolving every decade, it’s expected that by 2050, voice
commands will handle more than 50% of searches.
Out of all the smart speakers, Alexa covers 31.1% of the market customers— almost 1.5x times the combination of the other smart speakers such as Alibaba and Xiomi.
Having such remarkable numbers by its side, the world is slowly preparing itself for the business utilities of Alexa, and by the time we reach to the advanced interacting channel, Alexa will lead the charge for voice-based devices— in and out of business.
So, what makes Alexa a smart candidate for your business?
Alexa for business with voice capabilities may have a significant impact on the overall organization.
Irrespective of the business— whether you are in an academic profession, hospitality, or facilitating service for your clients— Alexa can be of great help.
It somehow brings the much needed natural language interface which simplifies several cumbersome tasks and assists in combating complex situations.
Let’s go through a variety of use cases where Alexa can change the dimensions of the organization.
Converting dull workplaces into the smarter one
Do you ever feel like meetings are the most productive ways of becoming unproductive?
You look for the meeting rooms, look up to the schedules of other employees, try to align all the members at the same time— be it overseas or the in-house, and end of the day— you realize that you have wasted more time than you should.
One of the researches by the online meeting service provider— Fuze revealed that more than 37 billion dollars are spent on the unproductive meetings. 
Having organized a meeting, you realize that the meeting room doesn’t have conferencing equipment, and you fritter some more time in arranging them— and that’s frustrating.
As scheduling and setting up meetings are complicated and as we squander our time and money, are we going off well with it?
I don’t think so as long as we don’t place Alexa in our working environments.
Alexa taking the command: With Alexa into the workplace, you can transform the dull workplace into an active and smart one.
You can simply place the device in your meeting room and connect it with the calendaring and conferencing software like Office 365 and Polycom Series respectively.
By radioing some quirky commands, you can fasten your meeting process.
Look for the meeting room: By merely asking “Alexa, is the meeting room free,” you can check the availability of any room. For a detailed search, you can ask “Alexa, is the room available at 5 pm.”
Find out who reserved the room: If you are curious to know about the person who booked the room, you can ask “Alexa, who reserved the room,” and later contact the person for altering his schedule.
Book the room: When you get the free room, you can order the tiny device to reserve the place for your meeting by commanding “Alexa, book the conference.”
Infiltrate into a conference: You can use Alexa device as a phone speaker or Video conferencing controller and infiltrate in any meeting by calling out “Alexa, start the meeting,” or “Alexa, join the meeting.”
Cease the meeting: Akin to joining the conference, you can end it by instructing “Alexa, end the meeting.”
Extend the meeting: Amidst the meeting, if you want to extend the reservation, you can request by saying “Alexa, Extend the meeting.”
Extended Service: Meeting is just a simple use case. We can deploy Alexa all over the office to have a better interaction.
Retaining the employees despite reaping the productive hours
Do you often curse your own workforce because you thrive to maintain their productivity and fail?
And it’s disgusting to talk about new employees because when it comes to them, your management skills are tested at another level.
That’s because onboarding recruits need precise strategies where you have to update the employees regarding your organization, bring in all the employees on the common interaction platform, help them learn about the kind of tools they will get equipped with, etc.
You spend time in explaining the series of things in a company only to discover that they might ditch you and your organization in the coming year.
As weak on-boarding or lack of on-boarding strategies kill your’s and your newly enrolled staff’s productivity, you blow up more money to get everything back to the track.
But the fact is— your poor on-boarding push might entice the employee to abandon your job, and you will have to spend 21% of the employee’s annual salary for getting a perfect replacement.
So, does having an on-boarding process enough for any organization?
Well, I don’t second with that because for pushing the limits of on-boarding, we need devices like Alexa.
Alexa taking the command: Considering Alexa as your important on-boarding device, you can change the mindset of your employees and retain them.
You can ask the new and existing employees to connect to the Alexa for your business organization.
It means that all the members of the company get the opportunity to interact on the same channel.
So, by inviting them to join your channel, you can actually avail accessibility to several features of Alexa.
Setting private skills: Alexa is not an embedded system. You can enable the capabilities of your device and assign these skills to any employee. You also have the power to set up Microsoft exchange access and link with Alexa so that the enrolled users can request Alexa for the upcoming events and add other events in the calendar.
Discovering the private skills: By offering them to connect with your channel, you can help them find out their powers with certain skills.
Enabling the private skills: By inviting them to join the Alexa medium, you can empower them with specific skills like “joining the meeting from home,” “scheduling the meeting at the office,” etc. They will have to use Echo-family devices and your default conferencing tools to become a part of the meeting.
Barring from essential skills: You can restrict them from performing important tasks like “calling off the meeting,” or “extending the meeting” by the voice-restriction module in the device.
Accessibility of the applications: By linking them with the Alexa for business, you can also grant access to corporate applications.
Retaining the employees: Basically, Alexa can help nourish the roles of the employees. They may keep the Alexa on their private desks and carry on with the office work, or they may dial a phone across the office without having to dial or remember any number. As Alexa improves the productivity of employees by making the corporate skills and services readily available, there’s a high possibility of a successful onboarding period. The successful onboarding period improves productivity, takes the employees in confidence, and let them stick to your organization.
Extended Service: You can add and remove any user from the Alexa platform.
No more “you have dialed the wrong number.”
Is it too difficult for you to mug up all the numbers? Do you often misdial the office security instead of the helpdesk or do you mess up the conference by calling the wrong number?
Well, that’s not just your problem— even we feel lost when we have to skim through the list of the numbers only to realize that we have dialed the wrong person.
With poor conference calls costing up to 34 billion dollars each year (taking productivity and time in account), attending or calling the wrong person aggravates the condition and adds on to our unproductivity.
Moreover, an average conference call wastes around 15 minutes— thanks to the technical faults and distractions.
So, the question is legitimate— how long are we willing to invest in the wrong calls?
As Alexa for business presents a new age interaction, I’d say “Not anymore.”
Alexa taking the command: Treating Alexa as your calling device, you can now call the right person at the right time without having to stash any number in your brain.
For calling a number from your shared devices, you will have to create an address book and assign it to the device.
Let’s check how quick voice-capabilities make it easier for you to call and interact.
Calling by name: You can call out any name loudly to talk. For example— “Alexa, call the helpdesk ” or “Alexa, call the manager” will help you to connect with the instructed person.
Calling by number: You can also say the numbers loudly like “Alexa, call 245-666-0122,” and communicate with the number holder.
Unfortunately, Alexa doesn’t provide you the option to add, edit, or delete the number by voice-command.
You will have to do them manually by configuring the system and linking it to your phonebook.
Alexa will become a complete package when it allows you to add, update, and remove the contact by your voice-command; and by looking at its pace, it might be at the next door.
Extended Feature: By interlinking Alexa with the Cisco System (the conferencing system), you can effectuate your conference calls.
Provisioning the usage report
How many tools in your organization report about themselves? Do the IT admins of your company find it extremely difficult to trace and supervise each device mounted?
As it’s been one of the challenging issues faced by any organization, most of them don’t have a centralized console to get an elevated view of any tool.
The organizations who plan to walk without a central supervising console can’t go distances.
They will fail to gather important reports which otherwise allow them to prepare better strategies.
Moreover, in the desperate attempt to get the reports, some organizations use all the tools at disposal without due diligence.
That again doesn’t go well with the logic and rationality as they spend millions to collect unimportant data.
So, do you think Alexa can be useful in the given circumstance?
In my honest opinion, nothing beats Alexa when it comes to reporting about the self-activities.
Alexa taking the command: Alexa for business helps in supervising all the Alexa devices installed in a company.
With the centralized supervision console, the admins of the organization can take a close look at all the devices simultaneously and add these devices in the Alexa for the business account.
With this, the admins also have the power to monitor the status and usage of the devices and take necessary steps while they are not working correctly or are unplugged.
Let’s brief out how usage report arms admin with special privileges.
Any invokes on the shared devices
Meetings connected with the help of it
Private action of invokes
The number of actively enrolled members
The invokes generated by Alexa on the shared devices
Daily report on the number of actively enrolled members of Alexa for Business
The stats on meetings connected on the shared devices
The number of auto-joined meetings
The details on the use by room name on all the shared devices
Report regarding the meetings connected by room name on each shared device
The exact number of private skill invokes raised on the shared devices The best five invoke actions on the shared devices
The best 25 invokes made using Alexa on the shared devices
As Alexa has so much to report, the admin panel in the organization can link Alexa with the alarm which notifies concerning the problems in any device.
Hence, the organizations which resort to umpteen numbers of reporting tools get a unique solution to improve the internal interaction without hampering productivity.
The reports are generated in .csv extension, and you also get a comprehensive visual view in HTML reports.
You may also train Alexa for business to hand over the report daily or weekly based on your requirement.
Extended Feature: Alexa for business doesn’t halt at reporting about the activities of its Echo-family. It can also be utilized for extracting important reports of your website.
The downside of Alexa for business
Although Amazon is doing wonders in shaping these beautiful Echo-devices, the technology is giving some growing pains to the business because it takes courage to afford the devices which aren’t very precise and are susceptible of chipping in some significant errors.
But as the stature of Amazon has grown in the market in the past decade, it’s likely that we’d get all the accuracy which we crave, and once the infrastructure behind the scenes improves, Alexa for business will become omnipresent like laptops and smartphones.
So, have you got your Alexa for business yet? How do you use it for your business? Where do you think will it stand in the years to come? Let’s know about it.
When it comes to digital disruption, one of the most common examples is that of how eCommerce has changed the retail game and compelled vendors to think digitally.
In recent years, the growth of eCommerce has been unprecedented, changing the way we shop and sell, involving new tech trends like Artificial Intelligence and recommendation engines to make it more scientific.
But what about the socio-economic impact of eCommerce? Are there benefits of eCommerce to society or impact on consumer behavior?
For instance, according to a study by Bargain Fox 29% of consumers think testimonials are important for building credibility.
Or that 43% of online shoppers discovered new products on social media channels. Smartphone usage, eco-friendly shopping, and peer review and recommendation are factors that have impacted the main game where customers are concerned.
The rise of eCommerce Start-ups
Following the footsteps of eCommerce behemoths like Amazon and eBay, several eCommerce companies have come up in the past couple of years to cater to the growing consumer needs.
If you take the example of India which is one of the most booming eCommerce centers, companies like Flipkart, Snapdeal, Myntra etc. have attracted investment from major investors and venture capitalists and even foreign investment.
One outcome of this is better financial growth and opportunities for several retailers who can scale up and sell across cities and beyond countries. Consumers in remote or rural areas now have access to the world, literally at their fingertips, thanks to high internet penetration and cheap smartphone devices.
In fact, mobile and app-based shopping have taken precedence over desktop/laptop devices and consumers prefer to use their phone for the entire journey. Be it reading reviews, comparing prices or adding products to their wish-list, mobile is their go-to device for it.
To leverage the benefits of this booming economy, many companies are now adopting different innovative strategies and operational models to differentiate from the competition.
This has led to several new ideas like partnering with online marketplaces or setting up their own stores. ome of the most prominent operation models include:
One of the best aspects of digital commerce is that it doesn’t discriminate. Live in a remote location? Do you have a flaky internet connection?
Whether you are an urban shopper or rural, you only need a smartphone and an app to buy things that you never had access to.
This is crucial when you think of online pharma retail that deliver a range of pharmaceutical products at highly competitive rates, no matter what your location.
For the disabled and the elderly, eCommerce is a boon because it gives them the convenience to shop, on their own terms.
The burgeoning billion-dollar industry may work online but to keep the cogs and wheels running, you need human resources.
There is a whole new segment of jobs within the digital commerce industry from web developers, designers, Magento architects, web analytics, SEO managers to specialist eCommerce strategists and marketers.
While online commerce has changed the rules of retail, it has also minimized the cost of transportation, advertising, and marketing.
There is now direct and rapid contact between buyers and sellers and great use of social networking channels for communication.
As the use of social networking sites like Facebook and Instagram grows, businesses understand the potential of these channels to serve their customers better.
According to one prediction, 90% of businesses will use some form of social media for customer service in just two years.
To everything, there is a flipside. If eCommerce brings 24/7 access, convenience, competitive pricing, and more choices, it also has the ability to make you spend more and shop more.
Online shopping addiction is a real challenge for many people and the symptoms are similar to compulsive disorders.
There are many reasons why online shopping is so addictive; ease of shopping, no real money used in a transaction, quick thrills and delayed gratification.
Maressa Hecht Orzack, founder of the Computer Addiction Service at McLean Hospital says, “On the Internet, it’s not real money. If you get carried away, you can be in lots of trouble.”
Another flipside of the rise of eCommerce is the loss that local retailers and small businesses suffer and now there is a conscious movement among many shoppers to buy from small retailers and shops as much as possible.
But on the whole, eCommerce has provided many opportunities, economic growth and wider access to customers. As technology and machine learning algorithms evolve, we will see many more disruptive patterns in the world of online selling.
There may be plenty of stats which reveal why investing in an eCommerce industry could bring you immunity against your competitors; however, I am not here to do stats meandering, nor do I aspire to persuade you for owning a store.
A lot of pro-eCommerce write-ups come up with the numbers supporting the heavy business-ladened words like global visibility, conversion, bounce rate, etc., but that’s not for what I am here.
The terms may sound fancy and vital, but it’s essential for us to find how different does a business look from the ground zero.
As I am a realist, I want to fetch your attention by drawing out the reality from the ground level.
Hence, I’d like to share my personal experience— an experience which compares the two sides of my professional life— my traditional business and lately launched eCommerce store.
So, here it is.
Much like any other brick and mortar owners, I wanted my existing traditional business to advance leaps and bounds, but little did I know about its limitations until I got to know about the eCommerce industry.
As my interest grew in setting up an eCommerce store, I looked at all the possibilities and finally decided to make an e-commerce investment.
Today, being a part of both the businesses, I can validate that the only thing which separates eCommerce from traditional business is the “ORGANIZED WORK.”
How eCommerce changed the work ethics and behavior
Everything has terms & conditions: While I carry the traditional business— the entire process runs on trust. The goods are supplied on credits depending on the goodwill of the client. As there’s a saying— blockchain is a trustless network (where no one has to trust anyone); I believe that eCommerce is also trustless platform— where I don’t necessarily have to put my trust on the customers. With strict terms and conditions mentioned about the purchase, payments, privacy, etc., eCommerce already rules out my fear that my payment will die midway.
Sell facts rather than relation: With my regular business— which is mainly unorganized, I’d promote relation over the factual attributes of the product. Since the goods get sold on credits, I somehow make sure that my relationship ties with the customer stay strong. Moreover, to lure more customers, I try to build a relationship regardless of the factual weirdness in my products. But having eCommerce as a partner, I don’t have to create links to recover my payments. In addition to that, even if I develop a strong relationship with my customers, I can’t sell a bad product twice. It checks me to evaluate and improve the product on a regular basis. Hence, I sell facts more than the relationship.
Change in the background operations: Again, managing relationships with the customers in traditional business is much easier than the eCommerce business. The usual business gives me the margin of making grave mistakes because I know I can turn the table the very next moment by contacting my parties. Adding to it, I can reach them and throw relationship placards for retaining them. But eCommerce business gives a minimal margin of error. Even the slightest of mistakes could lead to ungratified customers who may abandon the store never to return back. As customers might never get to see the strenuous operations behind the eCommerce business, I could practically never make them understand what is all happening in the background. So, it is like now or never. It is the reason which entices me to manufacture a robust back-end process which doesn’t turn away the customer. It compels me to furnish an institution which is willing to change for customer’s good. And trust me, it is the beginning of an organized company.
Behavioral change in the employees: There’s a limited footfall in my traditional business. No matter the number of incentive baits I offer to my sales manager, it can’t go beyond the parapet of particular value. End of the day— my product may satisfy or not satisfy the customers; it surely contents the sales team. The fire to achieve the next goal ultimately tones down. But that’s not the case with my eCommerce sales team as the sky is not the limit for them. With unconstrained desires to up the sales ante, their behavior is much different than the former ones. As they have an entire globe to target, they keep asking for more. And what does their hunger give me? Of course, the supreme turnover and global reach.
Stronger return policy: Traditional businesses have hauled in particular notoriety in goods return. No store owner likes to get goods returned. As the customers know my work address, and as they get supplies on credit, they return the goods at their own terms and policies which aggravate the situation to another level. Two months, four months, or even half a year can’t stop them from returning the goods if they necessarily have to. But having an eCommerce by my side empowers me with the different power altogether. With the stronger return policy of one month and a lucid state of mind and heart (where I know that the product might get returned but within the particular time frame) give my breath a sigh of relief and help me not to darken my face in anger.
Organized reporting: One of the worst parts of having a traditional business is that they lack technology as compared to the eCommerce store. There’s no analytics to read the customer’s behavior, their buying pattern, etc. Let’s just keep that aside. That’s too much to ask for if I can’t even track the performance of the employees. eCommerce propels me to install tools to have a bird’s eye view on everything— from purchase to sales funnel. As everything gets traced bit by bit, ounce by ounce; I automatically have more data to cater some of the best services to my customers.
Goodbye Silo Mentality: It’s man's nature to breed ego and jealousy. Sadly, it has seeped into the businesses. In my customary business (which obviously lags in technology), the bunch of like-minded people form their own groups and give birth to the silo mentality— a mentality which hampers the interaction in the business cycle. They don’t share vital information across the channel, and the crucial information gets killed in the medium. But with the eCommerce accouchement, I personally can’t manage the whole team without the much-needed tools like collaboration platforms. As eCommerce pushes me to mount these essential tools, there’s a better communication medium between my employees and myself, and between themselves.
Regular payments: Let me recite you an interesting but hypothetical situation. A customer orders a bulk supply on the 1st day of January 2019. With grace days of credit payment being 30 days, he is liable to clear off the invoice by 1st February 2019. Suppose he fails to sell a single unit of supply in the entire January month. It is supposedly going to be really difficult for him to make me the payment. Cometh 29th January, he orders the same unit of supplies once again. As I make sure that the second set of delivery reaches him the next day, he ensures that the first set of delivery gets returned to me without prior notice to me. In this way, he gets the second set of delivery with new invoice date, i.e., 29th January, and another 30 grace days, and I receive back the first set of goods supplied due to weak return and payments policy. The situation could never take place in an organized eCommerce store as it completely eliminates the credit supply even if it comes to the bulk selling. And as mentioned, the strict return and payment policies basically structurize my business and regularize the account replenishment.
Clean on interest collection: As I mentioned that everything runs on trust and strengthening the relationship in conventional business, the interest earned on the principal amount is not earned until the customers feel like paying it out. For a representation case, I charge 1.5% per month of interest on the principal amount if the average payment days go beyond net 30 D. But having said that, there’s no written proof for the interest payment because furnishing a written statement might “offend” my “limited customers” and may well impact the business relationship. Again, eCommerce is way too different when it comes to the interest collection. For retail-based customers, I really don’t have to worry about the payment as it is simultaneously done against the purchase; however, in the bulk supplies, even if I plan to give credit, I barely have to “act good” to not “offend” them. My website clearly states about all the interest related terms and conditions, and in any case of discrepancy, I have solid evidence to sue them. Now you may ask that it again affects “the relationship” with the concerned person. The answer is yes— it does. But as eCommerce hands me the opportunity to connect millions on the globe, why would I care for a specific customer who failed to abide by the terms?
There’s no concept of cream customers: For partnering with the new customers in the traditional businesses of credits, certain criterions need to be fulfilled. I personally make new clients by scrutinizing the payment reports of the parties. Yes, I don’t have access to their bank statements, but having strong reference and network help me to bifurcate cream customers from the non-creamy ones. But that has one repercussion— it limits my sale. Making friends with eCommerce alleviate the need for creamy-customers. As the whole world is a potential customer, well-fortified policies eradicate the need for filtering the creamy-customers. With most of the payments done online or cash on delivery, and with powerfully proposed actions against the bulk purchasers, my pay is safe. On top of that, I have the added benefit of continuous customer growth without having to label them creamy.
Complying customers: Usually, in my traditional business, words of mouth has the ultimate value, which of course, doesn’t have the written proof. As a result, even If I want my customers to comply with the rules of the company, I can’t really coerce them to abide by it. But with the eCommerce, my customers come up with a much more informed mindset about the rules and terms of the company, and they got to abide by the law. The best part about the eCommerce is that they have to comply with the law even if they don’t want to. By choosing to land on your website, also if they don’t read the instructions correctly, they actually agree to the terms and conditions of the company. They are aware of the fact that any failure in complying with the law could land them in trouble.
I am the scriptwriter: With general business, customers are mostly dominating. With the ample supply in the market and goods on credit, they have the ball in their courts for most of the time. They govern the business terms and mold them as per their convenience. But they don’t have the “access” to this “outrageous privilege” in the eCommerce business because I am the ultimate writer of the business. I decide its script, and I decide how it should look. I am not pliable as I have the power to withstand their psychological pressure. Basically, eCommerce snatches the fear of losing the customers because it has so much to offer. With a customer gone, it opens a hundred new ways from a hundred new area to manage fresh clients.
As I can divide both the businesses into two different forks, I can easily say that conversion, annual turnover, bounce rates, KPIs, etc. come much later than the primary day to day real issues faced by the traditional business owners.
To have a say on how eCommerce supersedes the traditional business, one must first learn to differentiate between the microscopic management of the two. As eCommerce brings tremendous changes at the microscopic level, I can’t find any proper reason to not stick to it.
The organized business gives a much better sense of pride and sleep at the same time. eCommerce surely grants both.
Also, with the eCommerce business clearly outnumbering the traditional businesses and its behavior in all the fronts, all I can is— why shouldn’t I make an e-commerce investment?
To have an organized business, if it takes to invest in the eCommerce industry, we’d do it hundred on hundred times.