SMEs are confident for 2016 Business Growth
Royal Mail’s Annual Tracker study for 2016 has identified that 8 out of 10 UK SME e-retailers are confident that they will increase sales this year; an increase from 7 out of 10 in 2015. This is despite 53% agreeing that competition has increased.
This is in part results from the sales success of 2015, which was the highest level in 3 years with 74% claiming they achieved business growth.
So what caused this success?
63% of SME e-retailers were confident that their customer satisfaction had increased in 2015, as a result of a number of initiatives making their customer journey easier and more enjoyable.
Delivery is now a major player in the race to win customers, with on-time delivery being identified by 2/3 of the retailers as a more crucial element in the customer journey than the quality and price of their products.
Following on from this, a simple returns process is proving fundamental:
- 45% believe it pushes a customer to place an order in the first place
- 49% claim it increases customer satisfaction
- 40% think it will result in repeat purchases
- 1 in 4 SME e-retailers plan to simplify this process in 2016
Despite this good news, competition is fierce, and customers now expect an easy and seamless journey from purchase to receipt.
The accessibility of m-commerce now means that e-retailers need to think about targeting customers through various channels, and keep their prices front of mind to appeal to the deal seekers:
- 7 in 10 plan to increase the number of channels they sell-through
- 85% will target Marketplace websites in 2016 (eBay, Amazon etc.)
- Over 50% aim to launch their own website
So finally, what should you look into?
- Improve your delivery options
- Investigate the number of channels you could sell-through
- Take a look at Marketplace websites
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