The eCommerce industry is bigger and brighter than ever heading into the summer months, meaning competition for shoppers is fiercer than ever. Knowing what your audience expects from their experience with your brand can help you maximise every sales opportunity that comes your way.

The newly released Shopper Experience Index, compiled by Bazaar Voice, includes a series of very telling insights. Read on to discover how you can elevate your retail experience for today’s shoppers in a way that exceeds their expectations:

User-generated content matters

In much the same way that consumer reviews from peers are often more trusted in the decision making process than branded adverts, so too user-generated content is a powerful aid for consumers at the point of purchase. Over half of consumers say that UGC content, such as images shared by customers via social media, affords more confidence than professional imagery shared by the brand itself.

While this doesn’t mean that your product pages should be bereft of professional imagery, it does suggest that making space to share UGC on the page too can be highly beneficial. Some brands already do this, with the furniture company Made having an Instagram feed displayed on site showing how shoppers have styled their new acquisitions.

If you’re routinely tagged in images and content shared by customers, consider how you can integrate this within your own site and social channels to increase consumer confidence in their purchase decisions.

With 40% saying the addition of shopper reviews and photos in adverts makes them more likely to buy, it’s also worth considering how your paid search activities can make use of your user-generated content, too.

Social media selling works

Social commerce has been around for a while now, with platforms like Instagram offering click to buy posts along with platform-hosted shops. This is a key driver of sales, with 69% of shoppers inspired by social media and 54% describing themselves as more likely to buy from a post they could click to shop.

Facebook and Instagram remain the social commerce leaders and both offer a number of different ways you can make your posts shoppable. If you haven’t explored Instagram shops or clickable product ads as yet, now is the moment to add this task to your to do list.

Online shopping popularity isn’t fading post-pandemic

Even though it’s now possible to head out and hit the shops in person, the lockdown era-inspired boom in online shopping isn’t waning, meaning digital remains a vital sales channel for all kinds of retailers.

The Shopper Experience Index confirms that 30% of shoppers continue to shop online at least once per month, while 64% say they supplement their in-person purchases with online shopping.

Review elements are more important than ever

Today’s savvy online consumers are able to distinguish between brand and non-brand content and actively seek out reviews and feedback from past customers. When it comes to reviews, a number of different factors can build consumer confidence, with shoppers saying they take note of your average star rating, the number of reviews received, how recent those reviews are and how detailed they are.

With this in mind, it’s critical to ensure that you have a solid review generation strategy in place, to give those consumers the confidence they need to complete their transaction.

If you’d like more expert insight to maximise the opportunity online retail presents, contact us today.

Author Rebecca

More posts by Rebecca