What are the challenges faced by SMEs in e-commerce

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Conducting keyword research and implementing it will allow SMEs to drive quality traffic to their website

By Saahil Goel

Over the past two years, we have seen entire industries rise and fall, thanks to the global pandemic that has turned the world as we once knew it upside down. While nearly every industry has suffered large-scale disruption, some have managed to evolve quickly and are thriving today. E-commerce is one of them. With the global crisis accelerating digitalization, the proliferation of the internet has skyrocketed with India having over 825 million internet users in Q4 2021. And a majority of them now prefer to do all their shopping online – be it clothing, electronics or everyday items such as food and groceries.

So it’s safe to say that e-commerce is booming and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. This is a sign of progress for the industry, especially SMEs which are experiencing rapid growth. However, despite this, SMEs, which are an integral part of the country’s GDP and economic growth, face certain challenges in terms of fluidity in e-commerce. What are they and how do we solve them? We’ll take a look.

Visibility

Amidst the many brands and fierce competition that exists in the market today, SMBs often find it a major challenge to ensure their visibility. How can they gain quality traffic and drive sales if customers can’t find their website? For any business that exists today in the digital world, visibility is an integral aspect that can make or break a business. Thus, ensuring brand visibility is crucial, and one of the best ways to achieve this is to invest heavily in SEO (Search Engine Optimization) to bring the business to the top when customers search for a product or service. service that the company offers or even anything. linked to it.

Keyword research and its implementation will allow SMBs to drive quality traffic to their website and boost order conversion. SMBs can also consider partnering with platforms in the e-commerce aggregator space, i.e. a third-party platform, to help increase brand visibility.

Execution of orders

SMEs often have limited resources in terms of capital, labor, etc., which makes it difficult for them to manage all activities within the organization. With an influx of e-commerce orders in recent times, coupled with pandemic-induced chaos and supply chain disruptions, SMEs have found it difficult to manage all aspects, especially order fulfillment, in a manner transparent and efficient.

However, this is not an insoluble problem. Today, there are third-party logistics and fulfillment platforms that rely on state-of-the-art technology to ensure efficient, cost-optimized and hassle-free delivery and order fulfillment. The logistics and fulfillment hubs also have an extensive network of expert delivery partners and the reach of PAN India, making shipping frictionless. Outsourcing order fulfillment to a third-party platform will allow SMBs to focus on other crucial aspects of the business and move forward faster.

Client experience

The e-commerce industry is a vast and limitless sea offering a plethora of opportunities. However, with consumers having an abundance of options to choose from, they naturally gravitate towards brands that deliver a flawless customer experience, which compels SMBs to do the same to drive business growth. For every business, customer satisfaction should be the priority, but SMEs often find this difficult due to a lack of sufficient resources. However, it can be easily fixed by making some changes to the business model and policy.

For example, reviewing the return/refund policy, customizing products/services based on information gathered from browsing history or previous purchases, etc., would go a long way in ensuring that the online shopping experience line is transparent and pleasant for customers. In addition, it will also be beneficial to improve customer experience by investing in technologies such as AI, blockchain, ML and data analytics to strengthen customer services and drive loyalty, satisfaction, customer loyalty. acquisition and retention of customers.

Conclusion

2021 has been a year of progress, evolution, and innovation for the e-commerce industry, with total e-commerce sales estimated at approximately $56 billion. Given the surge in demand, 2022 is sure to usher in the next phase of industry growth, and SMEs that overcome the challenges they face by implementing simple yet effective solutions will thrive.

(The author is the CEO of Shiprocket. Opinions expressed are personal.)

Read also: Reaching a billion faces with vernacular content and micro-influencers

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