By far, the greatest challenge for the ecommerce industry today is creating a personalized, convenient experience for shoppers at scale. Consumers are not only in the driver seat, they are driving the car from the passenger seat on auto-pilot in their self-driving car. What does that mean? Technology has not only allowed consumers to get what they want, but to get it at the exact time, place, and format that they want it, all by barely lifting a finger.
But, as smart and savvy as consumers are today, retailers need to be smarter. Creating a tailored experience for one group of individuals will not work for another group. According to this TechHQ post, the "three Ps" - platform, process and people - are the keys to global ecommerce success. From the platform and process side, companies like BigCommerce are allowing businesses of all types to establish their ecommerce sites; from a payments perspective, Digital River manages the complex "behind-the- scenes work of managing fraud, billing, taxes and compliance"; while Shopify and AdRoll help to then market these brands to customers throughout their buying journeys. However, one "P" is blatantly missing from this discussion - purpose.
Without purpose, brands like Untuckit or Warby Parker would never have succeeded against the Goliaths in the ecommerce world today. Having a purpose is the penultimate way to connect with individuals around every corner of the globe. It also goes hand-in-hand with having a mission or vision and THAT is what is driving ecommerce forward - not for the next year but for the next 5-10 years.
The internet is a new medium, in the grand scheme of things, and so therefore, humans still rely on familiarity. Local currencies, local language(s), trusted payment methods, acceptance of returns processes, a friendly accent on the helpline phone, or even a bot which uses the local vernacular: your online purchase facilities need to be part of the scenery, not an alien presence.