How to win the ecommerce race in 2021

At the start of 2020 we witnessed the equivalent of 10 years of ecommerce growth in the U.S. in only 90 days, according to a study by McKinsey. What does this mean for you and your ecommerce business? We believe that the toolbox and opportunities for ecommerce entrepreneurs have never been better, but competition has also never been more fierce. Here’s how you can stay ahead of your competitors and win the ecommerce race of 2021.

Local production is your superpower

In today’s crowded ecommerce space, one way to stand out is to focus on the tried and tested methods that helped catapult Amazon to where it is today, and the trends that will not fade after the global pandemic: People’s desire for faster, smoother and more sustainable shipping.

Yet, how can you meet rising customer demands when borders are closed, fullfillment centres are operating at reduced capacity and there are simply less planes in the air? Produce locally. Not only is this better for the environment, but it reduces customer pains such as customs fees and long wait times that can ultimately lead to bad reviews. Here are some next steps:

  • Review production and shipping times for your products - are they in line with customer expectations?
  • Tap into networks of local producers, or work with partners like Gelato, who have pre-existing networks to scale your local production.
  • Communicate local production clearly on your website and marketing channels to stand out from the competition.

Experiment with your shipping prices

60% of consumers rank free shipping as the top driver for making online purchases, according to a report by the Global Web Index. Many brands are taking note of this and implementing free-shipping thresholds within their online stores. There are no right or wrong answers here, and the prices you choose will depend on your commercial strategy, but here are some ways you can experiment:

  • Try testing different shipping rates or thresholds for free shipping and its effect on your conversion rates and revenue
  • Try testing free shipping for short periods as a promotion. Consider how you can use the threshold idea to increase cart size in other ways - maybe offer a second or third product at 50% off, or offer a free small or complementary product at a certain spend level.

Show off your green side

According to the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, 75% of consumers say that they’re willing to pay more for “environmentally-friendly” products. Here is how you can stay ahead of the curve:

  • Tap into local producers or local production networks to take control of your carbon footprint, minimise your environmental impact and appeal to the green consumer.
  • A/B test the unique, sustainable selling points of your business as part of your advertising texts.
  • Add information on your sustainability efforts to your customer service responses. A customer service contact can be an excellent opportunity to educate customers and let them know that your company is working hard to do good.

Set yourself up to win in 2021 by decentralising your supply chain so you can meet and exceed ever-growing consumer expectations while speeding up your production and delivery times, reduce carbon emissions and help support local businesses.

With more than 100 local production partners in 30 countries, and a wide and expanding range of products that can help drive your revenues, we are excited to help grow your business in 2021.

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