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Independent ecommerce platforms go by many names. Online stores. Independent websites. Digital shopfront. Whatever you call them, many smaller business like to ask if they are entirely necessary.
Sites like Amazon, Ebay, Etsy, and Not On The High Street can create the impression that independent ecommerce platforms aren’t worth it. What is the point of trying to make your tiny cupcake more inviting, when you might think that even the smallest slice of someone else’s trifle will be all the bigger and sweeter?
In truth though it is still very important to operate an independent ecommerce platform. In addition to just being another place for people to purchase your goods, such platforms has great potential to perform many other roles. Here are just five examples.
In an online marketplace, while there might be some space set aside for your brand copy and logo, you don’t have the freedom to make your own brand the focus. With an independent online store, everything can change. You can design every last aspect, from the button shape to the colour scheme, to focus around you and your brand.
Take full advantage of all the tricks and tactics offered by professional graphic design and web marketing. Ensure maximum possible positive association to your business and your products.
Amazon and other such online marketplaces have a strongly homogenising effect on sellers. They all have the same shape profiles. They all have the same space to work in. The same font for their copy. Identically sized photos and video windows. With your own independent ecommerce platform, you can break the mould. You can fight from a fortress against format fatigue.
Distinctiveness can make a powerful impression on potential customers. With an independent ecommerce platform, you have the freedom to make that more memorable mark.
An independent ecommerce website allows you many more options for marketing. One of the most important being web content. Whether its blogs, videos, images, podcasts, or any number of other content styles and production strategies, there’s no better place to host them than on an independent ecommerce website.
Make the most of a space to share the nuances and details about your product and the world around it. On your own website, you have the freedom to create content in a way a marketplace could never offer.
On a marketplace, the unique selling points of what your business offers can be lost. Marketplaces tend to be focusing on comparing and contrasting products. They lack the ability to bring across the real and distinguishing features that make small and medium sized businesses what they are.
An independent ecommerce platform gives you the chance to really show off your specialisms. Wow customers with your expert knowledge. Serenade them with your supurb customer service. From your own ecommerce platform, you can more clearly advertise all these, and much more besides.
While sites like Amazon and Ebay do have systems to arrange messages to go back and forth between sellers and customers, they are often little more than varients of email. These slow and unwieldy options pale in comparison to what can be achieved on your own online store.
Instant messenger chat systems are extremely valuable when a potential customer isn’t in the mood to just “leave a message” but wants an answer to a question right here, right now. Despite the Amazon effect lowering standards for patience in many ways, Amazon has not yet built this direct contact feature into its customer seller communication suite. Take advantage of being able to speak to your customers directly, with an IM system.
You might imagine that an independent ecommerce store is a lot of work. In fact, you might even think that maintaining that alongside your marketplace presence is just too much of a hassle. It doesn’t have to be this way. Contact OrderWise and our customer success team can show you how our ecommerce module, with its exceptional functionality and wide range of tools, can make full use of all the advantages we’ve mentioned here, and much more besides.
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