1 April 2014

Online Shopping

The web has become a big hub for ecommerce activity with many contextual products and services on offer. However, there are still limitations of what one can sell online for which many it does become a difficult and an awkward affair. A lot of this is down to our five senses and how difficult it is for us to measure the goods and services in context. At other times, such goods and services may just be classified as illegal for which there is an obvious regulatory block. Consumers generally want to be able to hold, smell, taste, and see products before they buy. How does one measure the comfort of a mattress online? How does one check the expiry of dairy products before buying online? How does one check the freshness of meat, vegetables, and fruit online? How does one go about buying lipstick online? How does one know that a pair of shoes fit comfortably? How does one know that the pair of slacks or shirt actually fits well? Even the likelihood of ordering a tailored suit online are quite slim. However, there will always be people that are just plain lazy, have no time to spend on grocery shopping, or going out to try on clothes before buying. People obviously want to be able to experience online shopping like they are physically there but in comfort of their home. More and more people are taking advantage of the flexibility as they shop online at their leisure. Ecommerce has become a big business but with it also brings certain levels of awareness of meeting customer expectations as well as complexities in window dressing while drawing a virtual mirror into the five senses of the human perception. Also, the constant need to stay competitive is another hurdle. Often times prices online are set much cheaper than in store until there is an obvious sale. Online shoppers are also generally a lot smarter with their buying habits, at least in some respects. Customers also have the luxury of using third-party applications that can provide assisted tools for shopping such as in aggregation of online bargains. There is always a constant need and necessity of ecommerce businesses to stay competitive and in order to stay competitive there is a need to monitor the market and consumer behavior. Ecommerce as a result makes a huge return from big data analytics both in form of social media, advertising, as well as general customer engagement efforts. Businesses online seek to entice customers and increase online traffic to their sites while customers want to find the right product or service that meets their needs. The Internet provides businesses an instant global platform to showcase their products and services with a global consumer base. There are also regional limitations and restrictions to conform to in respect of trade regulations. There is also complexities in consumer behavior from region to region which influences the online store front. Ecommerce also faces many complexities in security and the way they manage consumer transactions. All in all, as billions of transactions are conducted online in all array of contexts, there is a need to analyze consumer behaviors in rich information flows, but at same time providing a connected and satisfying experience for all. As knowledge discovery grows leaps and bounds through artificial intelligence, we are likely to see more breakthroughs in technological advancements to emerge, to influence, and add further dynamics to the ecommerce domain.