Digital Merchandising: Best Practices for merchandising excellence
Global digital commerce sales are expected to hit $5 trillion in the year 2022 and skyrocket to $6 trillion by 2024. Digital commerce sales in the US alone are expected to cross $1 trillion in 2022, a milestone that was expected to be reached only in 2024 before the pandemic hit. (Insider Intelligence forecast).
What the above numbers indicate is that if anything, digital commerce is only going one way in the future – up. And adversity in the market will bring challenges, yes, but it will throw the doors wider open for businesses that are ready to adapt and surge forward.
Global digital commerce sales are expected to hit $5 trillion in the year 2022 and skyrocket to $6 trillion by 2024.
The upsurge in digital commerce is not very hard to understand. Whether it’s a product or a service, the sheer convenience of online shopping, combined with an instantly expansive range of products or services to choose from, makes online shopping far more rewarding. For businesses, the channel provides great opportunity to expand geographically, reach more customers, and drive revenue organically.
These benefits, of course, are subject to the business’s ability to get noticed by prospective customers, instill enough trust to sell products or services to them, and create an experience that evokes loyalty to ensure repeat customers and advocacy. Hence, digital merchandising (aka. eCommerce merchandising).
What is Digital Merchandising?
Digital merchandising, or eCommerce merchandising, is the art and science of highlighting products or services you want customers to see and buy while enriching the overall shopping journey.
This must be achieved without creating a hindrance in the shopping journey, ensuring that the customer has a smooth, seamless ride. In other words, if digital commerce is about selling products to customers, digital merchandising is about how these products are sold. Branding, imagery, product placement, categorization; these are all elements of digital merchandising that motivate customers to hit the ‘add to cart’ button.
While a large number of customers are now comfortable with shopping online, there are still many that don’t trust the experience. There are variables that businesses may not always be able to control. A prime example is shipping costs, or time taken for delivery. However, there are many other hindrances that can be taken care of with sound digital merchandising. For example, one of the biggest roadblocks customers face when shopping online is the absence of a tactile experience – the ability to touch and feel a product before buying it. While technology hasn’t reached a point where this can be made possible (not yet, anyway), the right use of imagery, video, and information (dimensions, material etc.) can be leveraged to build customer confidence. Combine this with user-generated content (reviews, ratings, customer images and videos), and you get a well-rounded online shopping experience that comes close to, or even surpasses, an in-store experience.
Digital Merchandising Best Practices: Getting it Right, Every Step of the Way
The exponentially increasing number of eCommerce websites across the internet means that as opportunities open up, so does the competition. This also presents businesses with the unique opportunity to stand out from the rest, and truly make an impact. Here are some effective digital merchandising best practices to help your businesses achieve this:
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