What Do Consumers Need?

By Melanie Prough on Thursday, August 27, 2009
Filed Under: Zen Cart Marketing

“My first rule of consumerism is never to buy anything you can’t make your children carry.”

– Bill Bryson

If you are involved in the business of ecommerce it is important to accept the truth that we live in a fully consumer driven society.

What this means in practical terms is that your product selection and available services are largely dependent on the consumer’s taste, preference and current trends. As more and more shoppers make their way to the world of online shopping… it’s abundantly clear that the consumer is in the driver’s seat.

“Whoever said money can’t buy happiness simply didn’t know where to go shopping.”

– Bo Derek

There are so many fresh and effective marketing tools for ecommerce websites, but if you didn’t start with proper market research you may be spinning your wheels. When you bring a new product to the online market you need to be very confident it is something that the consumer wants.

It is possible to successfully bring a new product to the marketplace without a consumer mandate, but in this case you will need to work hard to help your customers, leads and prospects to understand why this product is something they really need or want. Without inspiring a genuine need on the part of your customers you will likely find few sales.

“Thanksgiving is a typically American holiday…The lavish meal is a symbol of the fact that abundant consumption is the result and reward of production.”

– Ayn Rand

Once a consumer understands they don’t have something and they believe they really need it, then there’s a built-in motivation for a product purchase.

This doesn’t mean you should be deceitful or brash in your presentation of information related to the product. In fact, a quality presentation for ecommerce will be a relative soft sell, such as providing testimonials on how your product has helped others. When there is a correlation between the product and a implied remedy the product becomes more accessible and desired.

“Thirty-five percent of consumers surveyed said added costs, such as shipping and handling, or lengthy delivery times resulted in their abandoning an online purchase. Sites requesting too much information is another annoyance that drives away 35 percent of buyers surveyed.”

– Net IQ Web Trends

Beyond the task of selling a product that consumers want and need, there are other issues to consider. In 2005 Internet usage studies showed that just over 1 billion Internet shoppers existed, with about 20% of those online sales were based in the US. Successful online stores are finding ways to offset shipping and handling expenses as a means of boosting sales and moving in to International markets as well.

The most crucial piece of any ecommerce venture is finding your niche with a product that sells and marketing that product effectively and with great reach to the more than 1 billion potential shoppers that will log on this year.

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