The final eCommerce issue discussed at the workshop relates to lack of immediacy. One of the major benefits of shopping in a physical store as opposed to an online store is that once a customer purchases the product, they immediately possess it. This issue is one of the main reasons online shops appear unappealing to many shoppers. However, Tania offered an unexpected solution to this problem; packaging. “If the waiting period is met with a pleasant packaging experience, that can outweigh the lengthy waiting period,” explained Tania. Customers enjoy opening beautiful packaging, it adds to their shopping experience as well as their perception of the brand. “When customers leave my store, they want to be seen with a beautiful shopping bag,” said Asanda Mali, one of the Threads entrepreneurs. Another benefit packaging offers takes the form of inserts. The first type of insert discussed took the form of a pamphlet which advertises other products the brand is selling. These types of inserts are very beneficial as they are inexpensive and are being sent directly to the brand’s target market. The second type of insert discussed took the form of a gift. Gifts can take the form of small products that complement the main purchase or even written notes. “When you are an up and coming designer, a thank you card can be very beneficial. It creates a good customer experience,” explained Tania. It is important to remember that insert gifts do not need to be expensive or elaborate, but rather make the customer feel special and look forward to buying from you.
“If the waiting period is met with a pleasant packaging experience, that can outweigh the lengthy waiting period” – @taniahabimana on #ThreadsBySB
It is clear that online shopping is a growing trend that is taking the retail world by storm. Therefore, it is important for all entrepreneurs to learn and understand both the advantages and disadvantages of eCommerce in order to overcome the challenges of eCommerce as well as create successful online stores. The Threads entrepreneurs learnt many useful eCommerce tips that they can implement into their own businesses. It will be exciting to see how they utilize this knowledge in order to transform their current businesses into successful international brands. Thank you to Tania for educating the entrepreneurs on how to take their businesses to the next level.