As a tradesperson, it is now essential to have an online sales site. Indeed, the figures confirm this: there is a clear trend towards online purchasing.
Today, 76% of Belgian internet users make purchases online. 87% of them are willing to repeat the experience. In addition, 64% of Belgians made an online purchase last year, which is nearly 20% more than four years ago.
The current trend is therefore clear and is growing continuously.
A question to ask yourself: why do people purchase online?
Here are, in descending order, the top five reasons most commonly cited by purchasers
- Online purchases save time
- Online sites offer lower prices
- The option of having purchases delivered is an advantage
- Purchases are possible 24 hours a day
- Sites have promotions and other attractive offers
First and foremost, it is therefore the time factor and ease that explain online purchases. Price is only of secondary importance.
But why are other internet users opposed to online purchasing?
The most common answers to this question are many:
Some people need to see the item, to hold it, to try it, etc. before purchasing it. Likewise, they sometimes need to speak to a salesperson to get additional information. Others say that they find everything they need in the ("physical") store so why purchase online? Another barrier concerns security: some internet users do not want to provide their personal data online and have doubts regarding the security of transactions.
A word to the wise: it is up to you to perfect your e-commerce tool to satisfy your customers! How to do this
Think about the following three key points
- Provide your future customers with a detailed description of the product and several photos from different angles. Enrich your product information sheet on your website
- Give your purchasers the possibility to ask questions and give their opinions, for example via a comments area or customer service
- Make the use of data and the payment process as secure as possible. Provide internet users with assurances of this security
A final question arises: What do internet users purchase?
First of all, it is important to note that 37% of online purchases are little extras that internet users give themselves. They are not therefore replacing the physical purchases made in-store. Consequently, there is a market to be conquered!
The six most purchased product types are, in order: clothing, hotel stays and reservations, books, train/boat/plane tickets, tickets for events and shoes.
These sectors are constantly changing. For the coming years, bet on clothing and shoes, furniture and decoration as well as DIY and garden. Purchases in these sectors will continue to increase!
Not yet convinced about an e-commerce tool?
Here are two more reasons that could convince you of the usefulness of having a presence on the web:
- 89% of the population visits search engines before making a purchasing decision
- 45% of Belgians look for information online and consult site before going into a store to purchase products
Capture these two targets with your website!
There are many reasons to have a website. Be visible, be seen... and sell!
Sources for figures:
Image © Mercator