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Selling in the digital age

A recent survey by Microsoft in the Asia Pacific region, found that almost two-thirds of businesses were fast-tracking the take-up of digital services and automation to enhance their online presence in this increasingly digital world.

Marketing company ZEALD reports that getting online is more important than ever – especially when certain e-commerce trends can drive business sales.

They reported that selling on different social channels is more prominent, with Instagram, Facebook and YouTube growing particularly quickly. Influencers and online personalities are adept at pushing sales through for companies, but smaller businesses without large marketing budgets can still achieve success with an intimate, personalised and unique social media presence.

The popularity of social media means that businesses can use multi-channel marketing and advertise in different places that their customers frequent.

Google is looking to make YouTube an ecommerce platform by enabling viewers to purchase items they see in ‘unboxing’ videos – specifically through an integration with Shopify. With 5 billion videos on YouTube it creates a massive ecommerce store where consumers can buy items they have been researching or viewing without having to leave the site.

Data from NZ Post showed that when Auckland went back into lockdown in August, online shopping in the region was up by 70% compared to the same time last year. Consumers were shopping across all categories, with the largest increases in homewares, electronics and food.

During the month of August over 1.3 million Kiwis shopped online, spending a cumulative $511 million and older New Zealanders are leading the charge, with a 38% rise in online spending by over 75s.

New Zealanders’ demand for online grocery shopping has increased so much that Countdown has recently opened a dark store – a supermarket that only services online shopping orders.

Countdown said that online orders have increased 74% and now account for 11% of total company sales. Their new dark store will complete over 7,000 orders a week when fully up and running.

E-commerce is undoubtedly the way of the future, however, with so much content available and ever-increasing competition, consumers can be overwhelmed by all the choice. Businesses can attract customers and keep them coming back when their content stands out, grabs their attention and is of a high quality.

The online shopping experience for consumers can be enhanced by ensuring it is easy, exciting and rewarding – thank you emails and loyalty offers go a long way in attracting repeat business.

A benefit of selling and advertising online is the digital tools and analytics available which help track customer behaviours, movements and demographics. What items are selling best? Who are your consumers? Where in the world are they shopping from?

Huge companies like Amazon, Walmart and Target lead the world in retail ecommerce, with the ability to adeptly respond to consumer needs and monitor consumer behaviour through machine learning and AI. Their embrace of technology and analytics means they know more about their customers and can meet their needs and wants accordingly, resulting in more sales and higher business growth. 


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