Busting the Top 5 Ecommerce Myths

Dec 21, 2012 9:01 PM  By

The ecommerce market has been around for great many years already. There are so many researches, discussions and surveys about its various aspects, principles, tendencies and technologies, so that it seems like everything is quite clear. However, there are still some misconceptions circling around the ecommerce field that online vendors tend to fall victims of. While some of them put various obstacles on the way, the others may lead to fatal results. The information below is focused to help clean the air on five popular ecommerce myths.

Myth #1: Your Ecommerce Website is the Total Plan of Your Online Business
The first and perhaps most crucial misconception about ecommerce that many online vendors fall victims of is that setting up an online store, stocking databases with products and integrating web shopping cart and payment options are quite enough to start online sales. In fact, your website is just a part of a total business plan – it is just a tool that has to work in a synergy with others in order to succeed on this highly competitive ecommerce market.

Yes, building an ecommerce website and handling online transaction is quite easy. The more crucial issues to consider are: thorough research of market tendencies and analysis of the current trends along with potential risks, understanding customer wishes and motivation, defining efficient marketing and promotional strategies that are going to work for your particular business, integrating innovative ecommerce features and options, providing superior customer support and many others. There are multiple aspects to focus on in order to make your online venture successful and special one.

Myth #2: Automatic Traffic
One of the most crucial misconceptions among online business start-ups is that after building and launching an ecommerce website they can sit relaxed and watch as the traffic rolls in. Even ideally designed web stores with highly attractive showcases, top-notch quality products and sound value deals may eventually fail, if their owners don’t understand properly the mechanism of gaining online traffic. Unlike foot traffic for traditional physical stores, the online one requires smart marketing strategies and substantial efforts to be applied in order to drive more prospects to your online marketplace.

It’s definitely not worth to expect that your prospective buyers will come to your website easily – there are thousands and even millions of competitors in any market niche. Without active marketing and promotional campaigns you may end up with just a few visitors coming your way. Successful are those ecommerce ventures that use professional search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing (SMM), search engine marketing (SEM) and pay per click (PPC) advertising, etc. and are actively promoted to build brand awareness. Have you already started working on these marketing strategies? They should make a significant contribution to increasing your overall targeted traffic volume.

Myth #3: Ecommerce Places Limits on the Product Information
The next myth disseminating in the Web market is that ecommerce limits opportunities to provide sufficient information and visual content for products. This myth has led to two rather widespread eommerce mistakes – providing too little and too much information. Rather often, I encounter online stores either with a few words and the price under each item or too long descriptions with excessive unnecessary information following products, which in reality only confuses prospective buyers and may finally prevent making a purchase.

Take your time to think over the content you are going to provide along with your products. Make your product descriptions both comprehensive and simple. If your customers want to learn more about any particular item, encourage them to take advantage of your online support service.

When it comes for vehicles, equipment and various power tools, it’s a good idea to provide separate downloadable documents with more detailed information about technical specifications and manuals. Don’t forget about large, professional and, what’s more important, unique photos, not manufacturer ones, to differentiate your store from multiple other dealers. Modern technologies allow to provide photos and images that can be zoomed for a better product view and even online try-on opportunities, so that shoppers can try clothing, eyeglasses, jewelry, etc. just online to see how they look and fit.

Myth #4: Customers are Driven Mainly by Low Pricing
Another popular ecommerce myth among many online businesses, irrespective of their size and market experience, is that low pricing is the best selling factor. Therefore, there has always been a struggle to be price competitive. Of course, it is a common consumer psychology to pay less and get more. However, there are many other factors that eventually influence their final purchasing decision, like a brand popularity, business credibility level, engaging storefront, easy and convenient shopping experience, comprehensive and responsive customer support, etc.

Besides, rather often “cheap” is associated with poor quality and dead stock. In such a way, being price competitive is not the only key to your online success. There are many other efficient methods to attract buyers and boost your sales, like holiday and seasonal discounts, various loyalty programs, coupon codes, free shipping, free returns, first-class service, etc. It is essential to find that golden mean between quality, pricing and service to keep your products and selling propositions highly engaging and attractive.

Myth # 5: Language Support
As you will probably agree, many online stores running on the ecommerce market today feature support of one language only – English or some nationwide. While national brands keep strong belief of having advantage over the international ones, online vendors from English-speaking countries and those who are directed towards the international customer audience, faultily consider that English is perfectly understood anywhere in the world.

As the resent researches show, less than 30% of online buyers purchase from web stores that are not in their native language. Many consumers also admit they hesitate buying from shops that are in the language they don’t understand at all, even if they visually like goods. That’s why, it is essential to provide multi-language support through your online store, and first of all, for the world’s most popular languages, including English, Spanish, French, German, Arabic, Chinese, Italian and Russian. By ensuring mutual understanding, you get high chances to build strong relationships and effective interaction with both local and international clients.

Perhaps, you have faced some other myths and misconceptions while running your own online business? Feel free to share them in the comments below.

Nicolas Fincher is the community and PR manager with CS Cart.