By Mikel Lindsaar, CEO and founder of StoreConnect
For many SMBs, the holiday period can provide a welcome tonic and sales boost – even in tough times.
Regardless of the economic conditions, most people want to have a nice holiday period. They will buy gifts, travel to see family, and generally have a break from the worries and stress of their life.
However, most SMBs are sitting on a ticking time bomb with respect to their online technology solutions. Since the integrated single-platform solutions have mostly been out of reach of SMBs until now, they have had to cobble together multiple systems and plug-ins to build an operational end-to-end sales, payment and fulfilment system.
Multiple systems means multiple points of failure, and often a heavy investment in staff to get individual programs to talk to each other, share data and so forth.
At any other time of the year, during usual sales volumes, this would be painful and costly. When your business relies on the holiday sales boost to prop up your overall financial performance, any glitches could be an absolute holiday disaster.
Akin to being ‘Home Alone’ or having to travel by planes, trains and automobiles with John Candy as your travelling companion – no disrespect to Mr Candy of course.
Of course, increased website traffic, increased data flow, and transaction volume are exactly the time when a patchwork solution is most likely to fail.
SWEOR.COM shares the following statistics about customer experience and website issues:
- 88% of customers are less likely to return after a bad online experience
- Slow-loading websites are said to cost $2.6billion in lost sales per year
- Website errors lead 13% of shopper to abandon their cart
- A complicated checkout process deters 17% of all shoppers
The solution is the emerging field of Customer Commerce – a philosophy of an affordable and accessible single platform solution that is customer centric but also allows a business to save money on both the technology and the people power to deploy and keep it running.
Customer Commerce platforms do it all – content management, online sales, payments, stock management and fulfilment – all inside one system.
Reducing costs, pinch points when failure might occur and servicing customers so well that they are satisfied, willing to spend more and loyal. All these outcomes will impact the bottom line of a company all year around, not just during the holidays. Over 80% of all consumers say they will pay more for good customer service.
If the holiday rush is a reason to have the system, it will continue to pay you back right through the year, potentially reducing your reliance on the holiday period to save your SMB anyway.
That’s my holiday wish for you. A single platform that will serve you well through the year and during the holidays.
Is it time to review your online operations technology and switch to a Customer Commerce solution?
About the Author
Mikel Lindsaar, CEO and founder of StoreConnect, is an experienced technology entrepreneur whose mission is to infuse small and medium-sized businesses with the power to implement a successful Customer Commerce strategy whilst scaling to meet growing demand.
Small businesses are often driven by a purpose to help their customers, and not just to make money. However, they can’t waste time and money setting up their business on a platform only to repeat the process by changing platforms when they want to scale, nor do they want to waste time figuring out how to integrate multiple platforms. They are seeking to provide a seamless experience for their customers, and this is possible using StoreConnect.
StoreConnect (built on the World’s Number 1 CRM, Salesforce) gives clients a complete, powerful, configurable Customer Commerce solution where they can manage their website, online and in-store sales, provide amazing customer service, run all their digital marketing campaigns, and have up-to-date detailed metrics, reporting and full understanding of their customer.