When Amazon started its operations as an online marketplace in 1994, few could have guessed it would go on to become one of the biggest firms in human history. It is often considered to be a pioneer in the field of e-commerce. Amazon and other e-commerce stores are no longer just a marketplace for selling merchandise online.
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The integration of technology in E-commerce today has turned it into a holistic shopping ecosystem. Some of these technologies include augmented reality, artificial intelligence, drones, and mobile apps. It is now possible to try products, visualize them, buy them at any time, anywhere from your preferred device and have them at your doorstep in just a few hours.
How Technology Has Stepped Up the E-Commerce Industry
Out of all the technological innovations that shaped the e-commerce industry, the emergence of no-code/low-code platforms like Shopify stands out particularly well. These platforms have democratized the industry. E-commerce is no longer the domain of big well established merchants. With these platforms, even small firms can enter the e-commerce industry.
No-code/low-code platforms had their initial focus on browser-based applications. However, there was space for introducing something more user-friendly in the industry.
This is when cellphone apps got into the picture. Other no-code/low-code platforms like Vajro emerged that allowed small e-tailors to create mobile applications in quick time without requiring any programming skills. This brought about a revolution in the industry. Here is how mobile apps are empowering small online retailers to think big.
Communication Made Simple
Marketing has persistently been a big problem for small firms. They simply do not have the financial muscle to spend big on marketing. Small firms could use email marketing. Although it is inexpensive, it is nowhere near as effective as other marketing tools. Promotional emails often end up in spam folders and hence get ignored.
With the help of mobile apps, you get the privilege of sending push notifications to your customers. This way you can instantly deliver your communication to your audience directly on their cellphones. Push notifications are a potent marketing tool because of their non-intrusive nature. According to research, push notifications have a remarkably high click rate of 67 percent. This has made it possible for small firms to effectively market their products and services even with limited budgets.
Access to Deeper Customer Data
The survival of e-commerce is largely dependent on customer engagement. Since online selling now mostly takes place through mobile apps, even small firms can get access to the location and device data of their customers. Earlier with browser-based platforms, this access to data was restricted to just large firms that could afford to purchase data analytics tools.
Since even small firms have good access to customer data, they can now also make personalized sales offers and tailor their content to meet the needs of individual customers. This has tremendously enhanced customer lifetime value.
Increased Brand Recognition
Once downloaded, mobile apps are always present on our smartphones. This has allowed small and large online businesses alike to enhance their brand recognition. Since these apps are on their phones, customers will see them, and hence their logos, every day. Brand recall also increases when businesses offer unique features on their apps and when they send push notifications.
The retail industry has undergone tremendous change over the past 20 years or so. Increased digitization and the popularity of smartphones is the force behind this transformation. Traditionally, small firms could not compete with big firms as mass marketing was hugely expensive. However, now technology has enabled everyone to undertake marketing activities even with limited budgets.
The internet has been a blessing for the e-commerce industry. The industry owes its existence to the internet. Sign up for a Windstream Communications internet plan to get access to this technological marvel.