The ecommerce industry is growing each day with retailers realizing the inimitability of owning an online store. This development of the ecommerce industry is primarily due to two major factors. One, the massive increase in the number of smartphone users. Two, the attitudinal transformation amongst customers to shop from the comfort of their home. The speed and ease of use which ecommerce space offers its customers has undoubtedly gravitated them to becoming loyal buyers.
Based on a study by Statista.com in 2015, the total sales of the ecommerce retail space accounted to 342.96 billion US dollars. This figure is estimated to exceed 600 billion US dollars in 2019. By 2019, the ecommerce space is estimated to be producing nearly 100 billion US dollars.
Thus being the impact of the ecommerce industry on the consumers and economy of the nation, it should be probably the most powerful business vertical contributing towards the development of the trade market on the whole. But is that so? The pasture is not as green as it seems on the other side. There are a few inquisitive areas in the ecommerce industry at this progressive juncture.
Let us drill down into those intriguing areas:
Setback based on geographies and laws which pertain to them:
Ecommerce business owners have been thriving hard to augment the reach of their business across the globe. Attempting to do so, they also have to deal with the regulations of these countries which widely differ from one another. The political norms in each country is different for e-commerce business – a challenge they have to cope with yet again. These differences result in “stateless income” with business owners spending most of their time tackling local politics & competition.
Lack of technological research for the ecommerce space:
Though research on improvisations for the ecommerce domain is being done on a constant basis, specific technological research for this industry has taken a back seat. This could be primarily because of the lack of technical expertise amongst the business owners. Hence they continue to incline themselves on simply offering the best of services to their customers. Rather than adopting technological proficiency to reinforce and quantify the plinth of their online business.
A survey by PayPal and Ipsos says that international customers look out for security on online shopping platforms. Users going through a cross-border transaction prioritize using the “safest way” to complete their payment. Business owners must sense the pulse of such security-conscious, experience-specific users and work towards serving their requirements.
Balancing profitability and customer interests:
With every retailer exploring the benefits of setting up an online kiosk, there is a steady increase in competition. Start-ups are able to adopt newer channels of online selling due to their lesser turnaround time. This comes as a huge challenge for large scale players. Such startups fix a reduced selling price in an urge to survive, which hits hard on the profit levels of other companies. To worsen things, marketplace sellers pay 40% of their selling price towards commissions.
Attractive shopping options, lesser prices all together result in consumers getting drawn towards targeted shopping platforms. But this introduces uncertainty to this market’s graphs for the long run, thus oscillating the balance between profitability and customer interests.
Impact of working in silos:
Every online business encompasses several individual aspects of technology, people management, and delivery logistics. When one organization functions across geographies, operating from different time zones & regions, it could result in concerns over collaboration of critical processes. Business owners must pay heed, that a streamlined workflow approach is necessarily maintained in branches across the globe.
Every online kiosk requires a data management system for Enterprise resource planning, point of sales and CRM. It is required that these systems work in unison for best results. Also, these completely different functioning systems need to be integrated and maintained with utmost technical diligence. When done so a lot of resources, capital and time is spent which could impact the focus on several other core tasks.
Although there are numerous turbulences involved in the ecommerce vertical, this industry space continues to dominate the hearts of its customer base. An extra effort to smooth regulations and set up a better milieu for these companies could result in exemplary results for both the economy and individual customers.