We meet a lot of people who have e-commerce websites that aren’t making anywhere near as much money as they did a couple of years ago. They are sure it is the economy. I’m not so sure. I think it could be:
1) When they first started their e-commerce website they had little competition. Consumers used the website because of the utility value – it was easier to shop on-line then go in person or make a lot of phone calls. Then competition came and someone else started an e-commerce website that sold most of the same products. Now a lot of e-commerce websites don’t have any true value propositions. They are just a bunch of products lumped into categories. Today, you have to have a hook. Why should the consumer buy from you instead of the other website selling the same things?
2) A lot of e-commerce websites look very impersonal. People want to buy from people. Consumers are increasingly distrustful on the internet and a lot of e-commerce websites don’t display any kind of credibility, values or history. You have to show the consumer that there is someone that can be trusted behind the website.
3) Search Engine Optimization for e-commerce sites has gotten much more difficult. Many e-commerce websites get hurt because they simply cut and paste the product’s description and photos from the manufacturer’s website. Search engines just see that at as a mass of duplicate content and they don’t attribute much value to that. Consumers move through the website because they don’t see anything they haven’t seen before. It’s a lot more work, but each product has to be individually described in a manner that matches the website’s brand or personality.
Oh sure, the economy has had a little to do with some of the decreased revenue we see from e-commerce sites, but it isn’t as big of a factor as the website owners think it is. The owners themselves and how they are managing the site are a much bigger factor.
Article by Sales Growth Group