The growth of e-Commerce has been incredibly rapid in recent years. And the COVID-19 pandemic is a crucial factor in the shift toward online shopping. The online setting in which a product appears is known as the digital shelf. It is the online equivalent of a stand in a physical store.
A digital shelf is a collection of online experiences with which customers discover, research, evaluate, and buy products. It includes websites and other online content, search engines and product pages. The digital shelf covers online shopping, from browsing and finding products to paying for them. There are many benefits of using a digital shelf, including the ability to reach a wider audience, increased visibility for your products and services, and the ability to track customer interactions with your products. If you are looking for ways to advance your business, the digital shelf is a great option to consider.
Success for eCommerce brands and retailers depends on their ability to track, evaluate, and respond to what is happening on the digital shelf. Since a customer cannot pick up a product and examine it, several functionalities have been developed to improve the customer experience on the digital shelf. There is also an expanding depth of data that can be gathered regarding customer behaviour.
Customers typically begin their online product search with Google for their preferred retailer. Google will then direct them to particular product pages or search results pages from a variety of retailers, depending on what they are looking for and how specific the search was.
In either case, a search engine is typically the first point of contact during the typical online shopping journey because every online retailer is also a search engine. The search bar serves as an online store associate, guiding customers to the products they are looking for, whether they are looking for a specific product or a general product category. But even when customers are looking for a specific item from a specific brand, Google frequently highlights a variety of comparable items that may also be suitable for each customer.
All of this activity is a component of the digital shelf. And whether or not customers are specifically looking for your products, you need to ensure that their search results include your product pages if you want to stand out on the digital shelf.
In a physical store, customers can examine and contrast products by reading the packaging, speaking with store employees, and holding, touching, smelling, or hearing them. Depending on the purchase, they might repeat the process at several other stores until they locate the item that fulfils their requirements.
Smartphones can’t simulate smell, so you can’t replicate every aspect of such experience digitally but you can influence how people discover and contrast your products online. And the digital shelf has some significant advantages over physical stores when it comes to comparison shopping and learning about products. The ratings and reviews of hundreds or even thousands of customers can be compared by prospective consumers. They can easily switch between different products and even stores. Additionally, they can learn more about your products from videos, independent review websites, thought leaders and other helpful content.
You must support consumers’ digital shopping experiences by offering as much pertinent information as possible by using product page features that highlight everything your products are offering if you want to dominate the digital shelf.
Why is the digital shelf necessary?
Brands can now communicate with prospective consumers while simultaneously showcasing their products. The number of search results pages will aid the customer in finding the brand. The brand will reach both customers who are familiar with it and customers who are not, which is advantageous. According to studies, the digital shelf has increased in-store shopping sales. These consumers use cell phones to the tune of 60%. According to research, nearly 70% of smartphone users say they prefer using their device for research over speaking to a human.
Attract more customers: With a digital shelf, you can showcase your products or services in a visually appealing and informative manner. It can help attract more customers and drive traffic to your website or social media page. With traditional brick-and-mortar stores, businesses are limited to the customers who physically come into the store. However, with a digital shelf, businesses can showcase their products to anyone with an internet connection, potentially reaching customers around the world. This can be especially beneficial for businesses that have a unique or niche product offering, as it allows them to connect with customers who may not have been able to find their products in a physical store.
Enhance customer experience: A digital shelf can provide customers with a seamless and convenient shopping experience. They can easily browse and compare different products or services, and make informed purchasing decisions. This can improve customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Boost sales: By leveraging the power of digital shelves, you can increase the visibility of your products or services and reach a wider audience. This can ultimately lead to increased sales and revenue.
Stay ahead of the competition: With a digital shelf, you can keep track of the latest trends and developments in your industry. This can help you stay ahead of the competition and offer innovative products or services to your customers.
Improve customer engagement: A digital shelf can provide customers with various interactive features, such as product reviews and ratings, personalized recommendations, and social media integration. This can enhance customer engagement and encourage them to share their experiences with others. With traditional retail stores, customers are limited to physically handling and inspecting products before making a purchase. This can be a limiting factor for some customers, who may want to learn more about a product before making a decision. Digital shelves, on the other hand, can provide customers with detailed information about products, as well as high-quality images and even virtual demonstrations. This can help customers feel more confident in their purchasing decisions, which can lead to increased sales and customer satisfaction for the business.
Track Consumer behaviour: By using data analytics tools, businesses can gain insight into the performance of their products and make informed decisions about pricing, promotions, and product development. This can help businesses identify areas for improvement and make data-driven decisions to optimize their digital shelf strategy.
Better Inventory Management: With traditional retail stores, businesses have to constantly monitor their inventory levels to ensure they have the right products in stock at all times. This can be a time-consuming and error-prone process. Digital shelves, on the other hand, can automatically update inventory levels in real-time, which can help businesses avoid running out of stock and disappointing customers.
Saves Time and Resources: With a traditional retail store businesses have to invest in physical space, inventory management, and staffing. This can be a significant expense, especially for small businesses. Digital shelves, on the other hand, can allow businesses to showcase their products without the need for physical space or inventory. This can help businesses save on overhead costs, allowing them to redirect their resources towards other areas of the business.
The Role of Improved Product Content in Improving Your Digital Shelf
Anything that goes beyond the standard images, descriptions, and specifications on an ecommerce item page is referred to as rich media, also known as enhanced content or A+ content. This can range from video to 360-degree photography, as well as interactive tours and downloadable documents.
The primary content is text-based and focuses on features and benefits. Whereas enriched content prioritises the creation of a mood or feeling over the clarification of specifics.
Retailers can use rich media in a variety of ways, but the end goal is the same: to increase sales by improving shopper engagement and conversion.
Let’s take a look at some of the advantages of rich media and why you should work to integrate it into your online channels:
- Rich media plays an important role in providing shoppers with the information they need to feel comfortable clicking the add to cart In a way that traditional ecommerce content cannot, enhanced content such as video, 360 photography, and interactive elements can virtually put a product in the hands of shoppers.
- Brands also have more control over the content on their item pages thanks to rich media. With the tools to go beyond basic descriptions and images, brands can inform shoppers in a memorable and engaging way about key differentiators and important selling points.
- Remember that rich media on your item listings can be viewed by people other than online shoppers! ROPO shoppers (Research Online Purchase Offline) are a growing ecommerce audience for brands and marketers. Before making a purchase in a physical store, these customers look for product information about the items they’re interested in online. Providing engaging, high-quality content can persuade these customers to buy from your online channel.
In conclusion, a digital shelf can provide various benefits to businesses, such as increased visibility, brand awareness, and customer engagement. By leveraging the power of digital shelves, you can advance as a business and stay ahead of the competition. Digital shelves can be a valuable tool for businesses looking to advance. By providing a wider reach, an engaging and interactive shopping experience, cost savings, and efficient inventory management, digital shelves can help businesses increase sales and customer satisfaction, ultimately leading to business growth.
To expand your business digital reach through digital shelf, reach out to us at Hidden Brains by visiting https://www.hiddenbrains.africa/
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