The growing acceptance of the internet as a shopping tool is unlikely to slow down anytime soon. According to Forrester Research, the number of online customers will reach 270 million by the year 2020. This will apparently see the e-commerce sale value stand at a whopping $523 billion, representing a stark rise of 56 % in five years.
Of course, these numbers mean nothing but good news for web-based retailers. But, are you wondering why it is that the industry is enjoying such impressive growth? Below are a few plausible reasons;
- Mobile Traffic
The development of mobile-friendly websites has contributed a great deal to e-commerce growth in recent years. In fact, the latest projections show that mobile visits to retailer websites will surpass PC visits for the first time in the US during the 2017 holiday season.
While impressive, this feat is not surprising, considering a higher percentage of the world’s digital population has been accessing the Internet using mobile phones than desktops since last year. Shopping on the go is now a critical aspect of e-commerce, and mobile apps are as much a priority to online merchants as websites.
- Social Media
The promise of free traffic has been very enticing to online merchants. Facebook boasts two billion active users worldwide, and a good percentage of online shoppers are among those users. Unsurprisingly, Facebook and other social media platforms have been launching pads for thousands of online businesses, and more and more retailers are implementing social marketing techniques to drive sales.
- Search Engine Optimization
SEO started with online media, but now e-tailers have recognized its immense value in driving free users to their sites. Unlike search engine marketing where each new customer comes at a marginal cost to the retailer, SEO promotes site traffic through natural search. Today, virtually all online merchants consider search engine optimization a website design priority.
- The Shopping Experience
One of the reasons why customers prefer to shop online than in brick-and-mortar stores is that the internet gives them the chance to weigh their options and get the best deals. They can quickly search for promotions and coupons and compare prices from several retailers. Moreover, the internet fulfills customer demand instantaneously, through immediate delivery. And, a buyer needn’t worry about the availability items that are difficult to source locally. The sheer convenience of online shopping has contributed a lot to the growth of e-commerce.
- Faster Payments
Modern payment processing technologies have made completing purchases in online stores as smooth as ever. Thanks to high-risk merchant account providers, customers can conveniently buy products safely and instantaneously using their credit cards. Mobile-based payment gateways have particularly been on the rise and are poised to lead the global payment markets in the coming years, further fueling the growth of e-commerce.
It is surely a great time to be an online merchant. Business is booming, and if the factors above continue to play their part, things will get even better.