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eCommerce

How to deliver a B2C-like shopping experience for your B2B buyers

B2C experience has evolved considerably than what it used to be in the past. But, it has a sibling which is not getting the attention that it deserves. We’re talking about B2B commerce which has a shopping experience that shines less in comparison with B2C buying experiences. There is plenty of room for improvement there.

Forrester estimates that B2B eCommerce will reach $1.2 trillion and account for 13.1% of all B2B sales in the US by 2021.

In our experience of working with B2B retailers, they have asserted the need for a B2C-like buying experience for B2B buyers too. After all, they are spending manifold in purchases than many B2C buyers put together. However, there are several complicated aspects that has to be refined to deliver a B2C-like experience for your B2B buyers. Here are some of them.

Hassle-free navigation & an effortless search experience

Time is of the essence for B2B users. Procurement managers or supervisors in a shop floor need to get going with dozens of purchase orders in the shortest time possible. They do not have time to be wasted with fancy animations, unnecessary pop-ups and menus that add no value to the buying process. For B2B buyers, the entire navigation and search experience needs to be straight to the point to help them process orders in large volume.

Menu navigation needs to be carefully designed taking into consideration readability, visual cues for the product, number of clicks required to get to the last level of category, etc. When a user initiates a search, the entire screen can transform into a search page that displays relevant & faster results for every keystroke. Fixing these 2 very important aspects in your ecommerce website can elevate the B2B buying experience to a whole new level.

Make it easy to put together a purchase list

B2B buyers normally have a long list of items to be purchased. They have to read through several product catalogs and technical specifications before deciding on the right product to buy.

To make that buying journey smooth and less taxing, make it easy to put together a purchase list. Providing options to upload SKU list, autocomplete of product details combined with multiple filters can help their buying experience.

Consistent experience across devices

In B2B, as much as in B2C, buyers often discover products in one device and end up buying it on another device. An omni-device buying experience is equally critical for B2B as much as it is for B2C. However, delivering a delightful omni-device experience for B2B users is challenging due to the sheer complexity and volume of information around products and related resources like data tables, diagrams,pdf’s, etc. That challenge can be overcome by prioritizing the information to be displayed consistently across devices, using design elements that are intuitive, striking a balance between displaying too less vs too much info, and many such intricate detailing till a finer design version is created.

Incorporate cross-sell and upsell recommendations

Most B2B buyers combine all components, spare parts, related products that are needed to showcase a complete product suite to their customers. Incorporating cross-selling and upselling product recommendations based on past and real-time buying behaviors will simplify the buying journey for B2B buyers.

Such cross-selling and upselling recommendations will help increase the average order value, as well as help the buyer quickly find compatible products. It is similar to ‘complete the look’ feature in B2C fashion stores which makes impulsive buyers to spend more.

Conclusion

Bringing the best of B2C buying experiences can be a game-changer for B2B eCommerce sites. At every stage of the B2B buying journey, there is some B2C aspect that can be used as an inspiration to create an engaging buying experience, some of which we have covered above and there are many more.

Want to champion the art of delivering an effective B2B buying experience? Talk to our experts for a free consultation.

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Magento crowned as a leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant 2018 report.

Magento is back again with a big news. Magento has been listed as a leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant 2018 report. It’s 3rd time in a row. The report evaluates 18 of the major players in the digital commerce space including Magento Commerce and others like Oracle, IBM, Salesforce and SAP.

The report has been generated focussing on the ability of the eCommerce platforms to transform businesses and their innovative approaches aimed at catering to the future needs of end users.

Gartner chart

 

Magento’s fast-paced delivery of innovations is a major reason for this recognition and here’s a break up of the key ones:
  1. The platform moved its enterprise-grade sophisticated eCommerce offering to cloud (AWS) as a SaaS-based managed service platform. The fact that it had the flexibility to be deployed on dedicated (on-premises) server environments and other third-party clouds made it a viable option for big eCommerce retailers. Magento also holds intact, its open-source offering, Magento Open Source.
  1. Recently Magento introduced Magento OM – a full-fledged order management system for order processing and Magento Business Intelligence that provides microscopic level insights to make data-driven business decisions.
  1. Magento added a wide range of B2B capabilities encouraging more B2B players to consider it as their commerce platform of choice. With B2B-centric provisions like quote management, price negotiation, custom catalogs and pricing, content management, order and inventory management, Magento is appearing to be a promising contender in the B2B segment as well.
  1. Magento also rolled out CPQ solution that helps in simplifying difficulties in competitive product pricing, identifying upsell opportunities and making up-to-date pricing data available for sales reps.
  1. Magento Social Commerce enables eCommerce retailers to sell on social platforms like Facebook with provisions to get started quickly and advertise as well.
  1. Marketplace connectivity – For brands that need marketplace integration as an additional sales channel, the marketplace module of Magento will prove beneficial. This module enables direct integration with Amazon. Magento will be adding integration for other preferred marketplaces like eBay and Walmart later this year (2018).

These initiatives from Magento has helped in extending its strength and presence across the B2C and B2B eCommerce space.

What’s ahead?
  1. Magento still has a long way to go in terms of ease of personalization as it is still reliant on third-party products and agencies for this part, which, in case of its arch-rivals, is much more native.
  1. Product Information Management (PIM) is yet another area where Magento has not focused yet. With social media and marketplace integration coming in, PIM becomes a mandatory option that has to be provided as a built-in capability for brands to handle huge volumes of product information across different sales channels. Building a robust PIM could be a large initiative, at least, for the time being, Magento can consider offering stable connectors to integrate with market leading PIM solutions.
  1. AI and Machine-learning-based feature introductions can help Magento increase the lead with its competition.

With the recent acquisition of Magento by Adobe, Magento is expected to overcome its existing hurdles and diversify its built-in capabilities. However, we will have to wait and see whether the new omnichannel capabilities will be made available on a SaaS model or as open source.

 

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Adobe’s acquisition of Magento – What could happen next?

Recently, Adobe and Magento have been in the headlines for a reason. Adobe is all set to take over Magento. Adobe is a go-to source for creative and content professionals. It is best known as the maker of best-selling software like Photoshop, Illustrator, Premiere Pro, After Effects and the universally popular PDF.

In the recent past, Adobe shifted its business model from selling out-of-box software to a SaaS-based subscription business model, called the Creative Cloud. The shift to Creative Cloud increased Adobe’s revenue by 39% and also turned it into a digitally native business.

Adobe was also quick to add a host of tools for marketing, advertising, analytics and content management to its arsenal. Commerce was the only missing piece that they needed to have a complete digital commerce offering. Magento’s acquisition is made to fill that void.

Also, in the past couple of years competitors like SAP, Oracle, Salesforce, etc. have been acquiring eCommerce platforms one after the other.

In the recent past, Adobe was also in the race to take over Demandware, but the deal did not get through. Salesforce, clinched the deal with Demandware leaving Adobe with the need for a commerce offering and hence, the Magento acquisition.

Brad Rencher, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Digital Experience, Adobe said in the press release announcing the acquisition, “Adobe is the only company with leadership in content creation, marketing, advertising, analytics and now commerce – enabling real-time experiences across the entire customer journey,”

Why Magento of everything else?

Magento is a household name in the eCommerce industry and is also a market leader. Magento started off powering online startups and as the product matured, it was able to meet the needs of medium and large scale enterprises’ eCommerce demands. It further strengthened its position by offering cloud-based solutions and addressing B2B customer needs. All the good work that Magento was doing was getting recognized by the customer community as well as by Gartner which ranked it as one of the leaders in Magic Quadrant for Digital Commerce for 3 consecutive years along with SAP Hybris, Oracle, IBM, Salesforce. Even Forrester recognized Magento as a leader in offering B2B Commerce Suites for Midsize Organizations.

All these factors put together makes Adobe’s acquisition of Magento a strategic move. To quote Brad Rencher, “As we looked at our current portfolio of Adobe Analytics, Advertising and Marketing cloud offerings, we saw an opportunity to add a next-generation commerce capability to Adobe Experience Cloud. One that could serve both B2B and B2C customers, across physical and digital goods, and provide the flexibility to scale to serve mid-market and large enterprise customers.

What we can expect from the acquisition?

Magento could become a part of the Cloud Experience

Adobe and Magento jointy serve few big names in the retail industry. Post this acquisition, these clients could possibly get a unified commerce experience that has the best of Magento and Adobe.

Adobe has some big brands like Coca-Cola, Warner Music Group, Nestlé and Cathay Pacific in its client list. Bringing Magento on board will enable Adobe to integrate ecommerce into their existing content creation, marketing, advertising and analytics capabilities. “Embedding commerce into the Adobe Experience Cloud with Magento enables Adobe to make every moment personal and every experience shoppable.” said Brad Rencher.

For existing clientele that use both Adobe and Magento, instead of having to deal with two different companies, they can deal with a single entity.

Magento’s open-source status might remain

Adobe might retain the open-source status of Magento. It would help Adobe to onboard existing Magento players on to its Experience Manager and suite of other content offerings. As a result, Adobe would be able to reach out and expand its presence amidst small and medium enterprises. The SMB players who have not been exposed to Adobe’s offerings until now might be able to try Adobe’s other offerings. Magento might be able to extend its service to big names that Adobe is already servicing.

Magento’s user experience might improve

Adobe’s design and content prowess might brush on the future updates in Magento making it more intuitive and user-centric, just what Adobe is popular for. This could possibly turn Magento into an upscale commerce platform that has the finesse of Adobe products. That said, we can expect more retailer migrating to Magento to take the dual benefit that Adobe + Magento combo offers.

We will have to wait and see how things will shape out in the coming days.

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IRCE 2018 – What’s new? & Who’ll be there?

The largest of eCommerce conferences, The Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition (IRCE 2018) happening from June 5th to 8th, will bring together over 10,000 attendees from the e-retail community alongside solution providers and keynote speakers like Seth Godin, Dave Gilboa, Mariah Chase who will be sharing their vision for success in the digital world.

Since its inception in 2005, IRCE has continued to serve as the epicenter of digital transformation for retailers and one of the best places where retailers can network and shop.

What’s special about IRCE is its mix of conference and trade show model that provides exposure for businesses of all sizes to evolving technologies, solutions, industry insights and contents required to catch up with the market that’s rapidly evolving.

We are just a few days away from IRCE 2018 and here is what you need to know.

What’s in it for newbies?

Among the 16 workshops spread across the 4-day event, the following three could best benefit newcomers and growing small businesses.

  1. New Recruit Boot Camp –  Basics and essentials for online business growth
  2. Search Workshop – Strategies for online stores to increase traffic.
  3. Design & Usability Workshop – Tips on creating engaging desktop and mobile websites.
Top 7 sessions you shouldn’t miss at IRCE 2018
1. General Session

By Seth Godin
Location: Skyline Ballroom. Wed, June 6th: 9am-9:30am.

2. Amazon & Me Workshop

How to Get Your First 50 ReviewsBy Jeff Cohen & Peter Marlenga
Location: Skyline Ballroom D. Tue, June 05, 2018: 11:00 AM — 11:45 AM.

3. Strategies for Top Executives Track

Is it More than Buzz? What Can AI Really Do for My Business?By Guido & Vish 
Location: Skyline Ballroom C. Wed, June 06, 2018: 1:15 PM – 1:45 PM

4. Marketing: Proven Winners Track

Connecting with the Z GenerationBy Rachel Tipograph & Tiffany Zhong.
Location: Skyline Ballroom E. Wed, June 06, 2018: 4:15 PM – 4:45 PM

5. Omnichannel Leadership Track

Building Omnichannel Teams, Technology and GoalsBy Alex Lirtsman & Matt Butlein
Location: Skyline Ballroom D. Wed, June 06, 2018: 10:30 AM – 11:00 AM

6. Marketing: New Tactics Track

How to Sell Online When Google and Facebook Won’t Take Your Ad MoneyBy Ben Petersen
Location: Skyline Ballroom E. Thu, June 07, 2018: 1:45 PM – 2:15 PM

7. Marketplaces

Marketplaces in 2018 and What’s Coming in 2019By Fareeha Ali
Location: Skyline Ballroom B. Thu, June 07, 2018: 10:30 AM – 11:00 AM

600+ Exhibitors – Where brands can look for solution partners

From eCommerce agencies to niche specific solution partners, IRCE 2018 will have exhibitors across broad categories. Web design agencies, hosting solutions providers, order fulfillment partners, marketing brains and experts on technologies like IoT and Artificial Intelligence will be there for retailers to help in deciding their upcoming digital spend.

The Exhibit Hall will also be the venue for seven lounges where attendees can network and unwind.

RetailX 2019 – IRCE’s latest initiative

Integrated shopping experiences that blur the line between online and physical store shopping is one of the disruptive changes in consumer behavior that has demanded brands to up their tempo in creating an omnichannel experience.

IRCE has come up with a new initiative, RetailX 2019 to address this purpose. This event will bring together three shows namely, IRCE, GlobalShop, and Retail.

The inaugural event of RetailX will be held at McCormick Place in Chicago from June 25-28, 2019 and is expected to have around 20,000 attendees and 1,200 exhibitors.

Ziffity will be there at IRCE 2018

We, Ziffity, will be standing as an Implementation Partner of VTEX, the SaaS-based cloud commerce platform at booth #1939.

As a full-service eCommerce agency focusing on design, technology, and marketing, Ziffity has partnered with VTEX to diversify its range of offerings around cloud-based eCommerce platforms.

About VTEX

VTEX is the only multi-tenant True Cloud Commerce™ platform in the digital commerce market with an auto-scaling elastic cloud infrastructure that leads to higher conversion rates and lower TCO. Utilizing an exclusive patent-pending Smart Checkout technology, a secure, intuitive and easy password-free process, VTEX presents a superior and seamless option for digital commerce with a comprehensive, fully-adaptable and unified solution that keeps pace with ever-changing customer expectations.

Companies running the VTEX platform have seen a 54% increase in conversion rates and a significantly low rate of cart abandonment. VTEX platform serves more than 2,300 online stores in 25 countries and is currently trusted by top brands worldwide including Sony, Walmart, Danone, Whirlpool, Coca-Cola, Lancôme, Pandora, Avon, and LEGO. VTEX was also ranked on Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Digital Commerce 2017.

At IRCE, meet Ziffity, Implementation Partners of VTEX, at booth #1939. Here is a route map for locating us at IRCE’18 exhibitors’ hall.

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GDPR – Decoding The Key Facts Of The General Data Protection Regulation

Data piracy. Right to privacy. Cyber security. These three words have been making buzz in the Internet world for quite a long time.

While customer-centric companies have always placed data protection high on their list of priorities, the recent controversies revolving around companies selling customer data for business gains or crossing the limits to offer personalized offerings all have led to a new awakening. Consumers, customers and public institutions are questioning the ‘goodwill’ with which businesses collect, store and utilize user data.

The Europe Union happens to be the epicentre from where the warcry for better data-protection laws is heard loud and at large. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a result of it. Once it becomes effective from May 25, 2018, it will have a transformative effect on data protection effects. The positive effect will not be confined within the boundaries of the European Union but will also send its ripples throughout the globe.

GDPR – Key Points In a Nutshell

Broadly, GDPR is harmonizing the existing data-protection laws currently prevailing in the European continent. Additionally, it would also go on to expand the reach of the laws by introducing new compliances, many of which are being flouted by enterprises.

The non-compliance of GDPR will attract severe penalties, as much as 4% of worldwide turnover or €20 Million, whichever is higher (gdpreu.org).

Here are the core requirements that an organization must comply to prevent fines and penalties.

Documentation

All data collected from users must be documented and kept ready for regulatory scrutiny when asked for.

Legal Basis

The data collection should have a legal basis, like the fundamental need to fulfill a contract and a consent of the data subject to collect such data.

Rights of Data Subjects (Users)

Users should be vested with rights of data erasure (right to be forgotten), right to revoke consent, right to restrict processing, etc.

Security

The organizations are responsible to ensure proper security for the data through encryption or other similar methods for safe handling of the data.

Third-party Management

Organizations should require their outsourcing partners, vendors and suppliers and other third-parties also follow the regulation in same terms as is applicable to them.

Privacy

Software product engineering initiatives in the works should include privacy protection systems right from the initial steps.

Notification for Breaches

In the event of any data breach which are potentially serious enough to risk the user’s rights and freedoms must be notified to authorities within 72 hours. The users must also be notified subsequently if such notification is required.

Five Easy Checks Merchants must take to ensure GDPR Compliance

#1 Gain explicit consumer consent

GDPR lays down three major conditions for obtaining consumer consent.

  1. The consent must be freely given, must be specific and without any ambiguity.
  2. The organization must be able to establish that the subject (user) provided consent.
  3. The subject should be vested with the right to revoke their consent anytime.

Ever since the GDPR discussion started gaining momentum on the Internet, consumers have been receiving a torrent of emails from their service providers informing tweaks in privacy policies and terms and conditions. It is better to gain explicit consumer consent before the deadline ends on May 25th 2018.

#2 Have a system for breach response in place

Art. 33 of GDPR lays down that, in case of a personal data breach, the controller (the organization) must notify the same to authorities and in some cases, even users of the same within 72 hours. To ensure that the notification happens in due time without any undue delay, there should be a breach response system in place.

#3 Train employees about GDPR and its influence

Despite the massive press coverage and the steady flow of conversations, most employees are still on the dark about GDPR and how it applies to them. You need to train them to make them understand its real-world implications. Especially, if a business has cross-functional teams working across the borders, the need for training and understanding of GDPR is a must-have.

#4 Ensure employee data inclusion

Be informed that employees are also covered under GDPR. Employers have to obtain consent from employees to collect and process data from them. Ardi Kolah in his ‘The GDPR Handbook: A Guide to Implementing the Eu General Data Protection Regulation’ advises businesses to issue a ‘Data Privacy Notice’ that explains in plain English what constitutes personal data, how it will be processed and the authority employees should approach in case of concerns.

#5 Ensure Data Protection Officer Independence

If your business:

  1. is a public authority
  2. if you are systematically following individuals through data monitoring
  3. Or carry out large scale processing of special categories of data,

Then your business needs to have a Data Protection officer. DPOs usually report to the top rank of management and are vested with specific rights, including the right to non-dismissal or penalty for performance of their duties.

In other words, GDPR lays down that DPOs must be provided adequate independence to perform their roles and responsibilities.

The Next Few Days

The clock is ticking and the dates are flying. We are inching closer to one of the biggest milestones in the history of Internet. When GDPR becomes applicable from May 25th 2018 onwards, it will be a huge leap for the entire Internet community.

GDPR has a long list of requirements that enterprises must tick off to be compliant. It definitely requires serious heavy-lifting and long hours of discussion with your attorney and many number of coffee cups. Even if you cannot get over all the requirements, it is possible to prioritize and get compliant in the most critical areas.

5 such critical areas are outlined above. You can mark it as your flag-off point from where rest of the GDPR journey can continue. To sum it up, make sure you are on the right side of the law.

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B2B Online 2018 – Highlights of our experience

B2B Online 2018 is a platform for manufacturers and distributors that provide opportunities to network with market leaders, disruptors and technology solution providers to power their digital transformation initiatives.

The 5th edition of B2B Online that happened at Chicago Marriott Downtown (from May 7th – 9th, 2018) brought together 70+ leading business speakers and attendees from 600 B2B companies from across North America, who are looking for their way forward in key areas like digital transformation, eCommerce, and marketing.

The entire event was well split into keynotes, interactive sessions like beer bucketed roundtables, manufacturer & distributor boardrooms and quick sessions like lightning rounds. The ‘Shake it up Bar’ and ‘SPiN’ table tennis challenge elevated enthusiasm to new heights paving way for social interactions for attendees with their new buddies at B2B Online.

The best of keynotes and sessions

Over 70 speakers from leading manufacturing and distribution companies shared insights on their winning digital strategies. The insights highlighted the importance of bringing in an eCommerce experience in the B2B universe via technology adoption for enhancing customer experience.

Best practices: In the marketing front, attendees got to know tips on creating content calendars for B2B marketing success, best practices in B2B content creation and how videos can help B2B companies market products across several platforms.

Tips: However, the show stealers were the exciting talks from Nicole Westenberger, VP, eCommerce and Marketing of Brady Corporation on how to meet customers’ demands better and stop losing out market share to Amazon.

Inspiring success stories: The inspiring story of Elevate Packaging on how it helped Amazon improve its B2B experience in several departments was one of the major crowd-puller.

Ziffity at B2B Online 2018

Ziffity stood as a sponsor of B2B Online 2018. Ziffity promoted its service portfolio explaining its areas of expertise in advanced technologies like Artificial Intelligence, PIM (Product Information Management) system integration and service areas like digital marketing, and design.

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Product Information Management – A Must-Have for eCommerce Businesses

If you are an eCommerce store owner, you know that your inventory list is loaded with thousands of SKUs with unique dimensions, manufacturer descriptions and other attributes.

When it comes to maintaining such humongous information in an orderly and easily accessible fashion, spreadsheets are our first go-to tools. A recent study by Aberdeen Group has found that more than 89% of organizations use spreadsheets in the planning, budgeting and forecasting processes.

Despite their benefits, spreadsheets often prove to be unreliable. Imagine the horror of losing your entire product data if a spreadsheet is accidentally deleted? Above all, manual data input is error-prone. From creating duplicate product IDs to entering the wrong information, several things can go wrong in the middle.

It is here that a Product Information Management System (PIM) comes of aid.

PIM for eCommerce – A Must-have Competitive Advantage

A Product Information Management System helps centrally manage and access all product information. It is an essential system for businesses that have huge volume of SKUs, product data sourced from third-party providers, and are selling through online as well as offline mediums.

The above challenges are faced not just by large-scale enterprises, but also by a large number of small and medium scale enterprises that have a growing inventory list.

But, why to invest in a Product Information Management system when a spreadsheet comes free of cost?

A study by Ventana found that more than 74% of organizations were able to eliminate errors and mistakes in product information management by deploying a PIM solution. Such a solution can bring several benefits like:

  1. Enables customers to find the right products to make a buying decision
  2. Gives the right product information to Warehouse personnel need for efficient shipping
  3. Smooth progression of the supply chain without any data entry delays
  4. Seamless omni-channel customer experiences across all channels
  5. Improves internal workflows of maintaining huge product datasets
  6. Facilitates upselling and cross-selling of products across multiple channels
  7. Reduced cart abandonment and better consumer experience through accurate product information

Akeneo – The spreadsheet killing Open Source PIM System

Akeneo is an open-source Product Information Management System that compiles diverse product information under one roof. It allows enterprises to create a single product repository – a single source of truth that is accurate, clean and free of all glitches.

The metadata information of products can also be edited in the future to keep up with changing business scenarios. From updating product descriptions to adding media files for better product demonstration, Akeneo offers as many as features one can ask for smooth product information management. The product history keeps a timeline of all the changes that were made to the product information.

Here are some of its key features:

  1. Import Engine to import product data from Excel, .csv or from third-party systems.
  2. A Product Grid that makes it easy to find & view product data quickly.
  3. Data completeness tool that takes eliminates incomplete descriptions.

Additional Features included in Akeneo Enterprise Edition:

  1. Advanced rights management for user privilege control.
  2. Rules Engine for automatic attribute-based product classification.
  3. Products Asset Manager (PAM) that simplifies product rich data management and many more.

There is much more to Akeneo. It can turn your disorganized eCommerce product data into a neatly organized and clutter-free database that will take your business productivity to new heights.

Want to streamline your eCommerce product data? Ask our experts how.

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How To Conquer the 69% Cart Abandonment Challenge?

Baymard Institute recently did a collective study of 37 surveys and statistics on eCommerce and its shopping cart abandonment rates. The study found that the average documented online shopping cart abandonment rate pegs at a whopping 69.23%!

To put that in perspective, every 69 out of 100 visitors to an online store abandon their shopping carts without making a purchase.

Forrester Research has found that cart abandonment costs online retailers more than $18 Billion annually.

Shopping cart abandonment is a huge challenge that almost every eCommerce player has to endure. It is saddening to see all your SEO, PPC, marketing efforts go waste in bringing the visitor until the payment page, but not making a purchase.

But, what causes cart abandonment? What makes the interested prospective buyers shy away from making the buying decision? Turns out that there are specific reasons that are universally applicable to the eCommerce industry that leads to the 69% cart abandonment. Here are some of them:

1. Hidden/Exorbitant Shipping costs

Hidden shipping costs or exorbitant delivery charges take away the cost benefit that eCommerce has over brick and mortar stores. Even with the discount factored in, high shipping costs can make a customer rethink the decision to buy the product.

How to conquer it?

Be transparent about shipping costs. It is best to disclose them along with the product price so that customers are aware of the final price right in the shopping cart page or each individual product pages.

2. Checkout process feels like a difficult maze

Bringing customers until the checkout page itself is a battle of its own. You don’t want to lose the final round by asking too much of them. Keep the checkout process as simple as possible.

How to conquer it?

Amazon was able to champion the eCommerce game with the one click checkout process which was even patented later. Even if your store cannot enable the one click process, you can set up an one page checkout process.

Be careful to ask only minimal and essential information that the customer would feel safe to provide and you will need to process the order. You can mine the customer’s past shopping history and show relevant information that will reduce the number of clicks. You can also include information like shipping instructions, delivery time, payment methods, saved cards, etc. to make it easy.

Additionally, the effort put in for entering credit card numbers can also be reduced using tokenizationTokenization is a way of saving card numbers for future transactions in a secure way adhering to PCI compliance.

3. Fear of credit information misuse

According to a study by National Telecommunications and Information Administration (part of the U.S. Department of Commerce) 26% of American shoppers are hesitant to shop online due to security and privacy concerns. Man in the middle attacks, online snooping, credit card frauds, and several other forms of cyber security threats are making them skeptical about shopping online.

How to conquer it?

Trust seals from popular security agencies, payment verified certificates from credit card or payment aggregators, SSL certificates for all store pages, etc. can help instill confidence in customers. In fact, the customers of today specifically look for these trust signals before proceeding to complete the payment. So it is a good practice to splash the information throughout the store takes cyber security seriously.

4. No serious intent of buying (wishlisting)

Wishlists are an effective way to hit the middle ground where the customer wants to buy a product, but is not in a situation to buy it right away. This could either be due to the customer’s choice of postponing the purchase or because the store has ran out of stock.

Unfortunately, wishlists have became a facility for customers to keep adding products to wishlists aimlessly without any serious intention of buying.

How to conquer it?

Use email marketing to reach out to customers who have added products on their wishlist but haven’t bought them for long. Use drip email campaigns carrying customized offers like discount coupons, promo codes, same day delivery, etc. to convert wishlist items into purchases.

5. Payment did not get through

No matter how reliable an Internet service a customer uses, there are times, when the payment crashes midway. It gives a quick window for the customer to rethink their purchase decision and abandon it. Although it is no mistake of the online store, instances like these end up in cart abandonment.

How to conquer it?

Use retargeting emails to remind customers of the failed transactions. If required, the store can also offer promo codes or additional discounts to complete the transaction than let it add to cart abandonment.

6. Social Proof

The trouble with online shopping is that, customers not always get to know the product until it is delivered. They always would like to know a third party opinion, somebody who has already bought it and used it before making their own decision. If a product of their choice does not have social proof, like star ratings, user reviews, etc. to support the buying decision, the product might get abandoned sooner or later.

How to conquer it?

Display social proof of sale. BrightLocal study found that more than 85% of customers treat online reviews at par with suggestions from their close ones. Showing the number of people who have purchased the product, star rating and user reviews in the form of text, images or videos can go a long way in convincing the customer to buy the product than abandon the cart.

7. Mobile Responsiveness

With mobile-first becoming the default strategy for all eCommerce players, mobile experience is also a critical element that needs maximum attention. Retailers who fail to give the mobile experience the importance it deserves will have to experience a high rate of cart abandonment. Online stores that render a mobile experience as good as, or even better than their desktop version will be able to sell the most.

How to conquer it?

Focus on delivering a superior mobile experience. Fine tune the navigation for easier product browsing, quicker adding of products to shopping carts, and hassle-free mobile payments. The mobile experience should be consistent across mobile apps as well as the mobile-responsive website.

Bringing It Altogether

Cart abandonment is a serious dampener for eCommerce retailers. While it cannot be completely prevented, there are measures like the ones described above that help in keeping it to a minimum.

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Magento Imagine 2018 – Excerpts of what we enjoyed, observed and learned

We at Ziffity are glad to have been a sponsor at Imagine 2018. Here is what we saw, heard and the key takeaways we think you should know about.

Imagine 2018 was an annual event hosted by Magento at Wynn Las Vegas, where eCommerce merchants dropped in huge numbers (1000+) to get to know the latest technology innovations and practices in the ecommerce industry. Adding to this, technology pioneers and partners like us made the turnout to 3000+.

From start to end, the event had several special sessions, breakout tracks, keynote speeches, developer certification programmes and sponsored events, sequenced and organized well. Industry insiders like Bill Scott of PayPal, Eric Broussard of Amazon, Peter Sinclair of Universal Music Group shared their business wisdom with the attendees.

But it wasn’t all work and no play. Live bands, multi-cuisine food corners, lunch and breakfast networking sessions were perfect timeouts to socialize. The entire Magento team and the venue hosts Hotel Wynn have paid attention to the last detail to make things happen without a glitch.

Inspiration and eCommerce success story

Magento Imagine 2018 had two highlight speeches, one from celebrity Jamie Foxx and the other from entrepreneur Melissa Ben-Ishay, founder of ‘Baked By Melissa’.

Jamie’s speech had a great dose of enthusiasm as he inspired attendees sharing his personal approach in taking on fear. His A/B testing of one-liners before his standup comedy shows was a great example of out of the box thinking to stay unique and achieve success. And by the way, Jamie Foxx owns a sunglasses brand which he sells online through a website built on Magento.

On the other hand, Melissa Ben-Ishay President & Chief Product Officer at ‘Baked by Melissa’, shared her 10-year journey of launching an online store even before having physical stores for her baked products and how the brand now has 14 retail locations.

Ziffity at Magento Imagine 2018

With an established service portfolio in the ecommerce space, Ziffity has been off-late focussing on using Artificial Intelligence technology to enable ecommerce websites provide personalized experience to users, automate customer support and sales processes through bots. Hence ‘AI-powered eCommerce and you’ was Ziffity’s main theme for this event. Demos of our voice-enabled chatbots and presentations were well received by the event attendees.

Sharing our expertise in key eCommerce departments like design, marketing and managed services to various merchants and hearing their challenges was an enriching experience for the Ziffity team.

B2B manufacturers and distributors expressed their interest in understanding Magento’s B2B module and how it meets their requirements.

What we observed and are upbeat about?

From all our discussions during the 3 day event, we observed that Magento is growing in popularity not only amongst SMEs but also for enterprise-grade businesses that demand sophisticated features. This clearly suggests that Magento is cutting across boundaries at a brisk pace and with frequent innovations happening, merchants can be assured that they made the best choice by investing in Magento.

Want To Know How Magento Can Power Your eCommerce Ambitions?

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Magento 2.2 Key features That Will Make Lives of B2B Commerce Merchants Easier

Magento rolled out the 2.2 version on October 2nd 2017. Here is a gist of the functional fixes and enhancement updates that came out with it.

KEY UPGRADES

Magento has sharpened its stance as a B2B friendly eCommerce platform. The 2.2.x update comes with a host of key upgrades that will take Magento users to the next level of their efficiency.

Upgraded technology stack

The whole tech stack of Magento 2.2 is made cutting-edge with support for PHP 7.1 and Varnish 5, along with Redis 3.2 and MySQL 5.7. All third-party libraries like Zend and Symfony that Magento relies on heavily for heavily have been upgraded to the latest stable version.

Also, support for PHP 5.6, Solr and Varnish 3 have been discontinued. Solr will continue to remain the Magento code base until further version releases/upgrades happen.

In the earlier versions a mapper_parsing_exception was displayed when Elasticsearch was enabled. Now that the latest 2.2.3 comes with support for Elasticsearch 5.x that error is a thing of the past.

Advanced Reporting

Magento 2.2 is geared up to tell you how your business is performing from multiple aspects, including: order fulfillment, products, customer data and much more. Magento collects data and passes it on to Magento Business Intelligence for analytics. Magento BI churns out at least 20 reports and 3 well-decked dashboards full of data for proactive decision-making.

To be eligible to harness all the goodness of Magento Business Intelligence you must be the valid owner of the website and the website should be HTTPS-enabled with a SSL certificate. Also, you must have subscribed to the Advanced Reporting module.

Security Upgrades

Unserialize() calls have been removed to prevent code execution attacks. The Hashing algorithm (SHA-256) has also been strengthened for better security of the platform. Protection against XSS attacks have also been upped.

ENHANCEMENTS

Bug fixes, refinements & improvisations all of which makes Magento 2.2 a worthy upgrade for B2B commerce.

Receive and Manage Quote Requests

Out of the box quote management and customer negotiation capabilities. Merchants can monitor all open quotes through quote management panel where quote details, history logs, and communications data are recorded.

Payment on credit option

A credit payment has been added along with PayPal and credit card payment modes. Configurable credit options will allow merchants to set up Minimum and maximum order limits, region-based credit restrictions, monitor customer credit lines, etc.

Advanced Account Management Tools

B2B customers can manage their own company accounts, categorize and organize customer information, import and export customer lists and also designate sales executives to specific accounts.

PRODUCTIVITY

A handful of features that will help B2B merchants place orders quickly and easily with minimal steps. Several areas where time lag was felt like, shipping, ordering, catalog management etc. have been improved for better productivity.

Improved Shipping Options

Temendo based multi-carrier shipping and out of the box fulfillment that will enable merchants to achieve cost efficiencies. The new update will provide rules-based shipping option along with the ability to manage loading & dispatching of SKUs from anywhere.

Requisition Lists

All frequently ordered products are populated into lists for quick ordering. Customers can select desired products from the requisition lists, edit the quantity and finalize the requisition easily & quickly. Multiple lists based for various purchase scenarios can also be created.

Customized Catalogs

Merchants can create customized catalogs and price lists based on products, product categories & customers. Each catalog pricing can be narrowed down to the each product level for better control.

OTHERS

A handful of other features targeted at making

APIs for B2B

Web APIs for easier & simpler ERP or PIM integration available for new company, credit lines, shared catalogs, quotes, and requisition lists. A REST API to add video to a product description is also part of the new release.

Pipeline Deployment

An automated pipeline deployment process that avoids downtimes, quickens the overall configuration process.

Community Support

Magento’s thriving community of engineers, developers, users and business owners who share quick hacks and remedies for sticky situations.

WRAPPING IT UP

Well, that’s not it. Magento 2.2 has still more in substance as a refined eCommerce platform. These are a gist of features that shine as the best among all.

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