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Is eCommerce increasing customer loyalty to businesses?



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Why do we tend to do something repeatedly when there are many different options to pursue the same task? While we can point out a few reasons, there is no single answer to it, and this can involve many different aspects. This brings us to an interesting question, do we need to keep repeating the same thing or reconsider our choices to opt for better options and results? This question could be answered depending on its context and the situation and also doesn’t come with a single-sided answer. While answering these questions sure needs a lot of context and understanding of the concerning situation we can say from our experience, that at least, there are reasons why we prefer staying on the course of a few things while diverting from others.


Customer loyalty to a business is related to our tendency to stick to something we’ve already experienced successfully in the past. These very human dynamics can help businesses understand why customers prefer buying again from the same business and why they plan to leave and enable them to serve their customers in ways that make them more loyal to their business.


When it comes to business and customer interaction, however, we have two segments: eCommerce and traditional commerce. This diversification of market segments compels us to analyze the differences in loyalty customers demonstrate in these two domains. That brings us to questions. Is eCommerce increasing customers’ loyalty?


Does eCommerce increase customer loyalty?

This is an interesting question to ask. To understand it we need to consider how can eCommerce plays its part in causing customers to be more loyal. If we see customers always want the best customer experience and what experience customers go through in the buying journey says a lot if they’ll prefer buying again from the same business. But we see that a barrier exists in the customer leaving a tried business for something they’ve never tried before. The barrier to establishing trust in new business. When it comes to eCommerce we can say that this barrier is a bit more high. Does this mean that people are more likely to stick to a business in the eCommerce domain?


The components to establish trust are different in eCommerce: When it comes to shopping and spending their hard-earned money people are very reluctant and want to spend it carefully. The dynamics involved in an eCommerce set-up are different from the physical world: you don’t physically interact with the salesperson or inspect the product physically and cannot simply walk to the store if the product presents you with any issue. Thus, sometimes trusting other webstores involves a more cautious attitude and inspection by customers than other businesses in traditional commerce. What if the other store is not as good as it seems, or even worse? 


Spatial proximity effect: The familiarization of things plays an important function in how we interact with them. The more familiar we’re with something the more we easy we feel approaching it. This is also observed in the shopping world. In traditional shopping, it’s often observed that the same products and services are offered by different businesses within the same locality. Being familiar with another business in the area presents less friction towards interacting with it and opens people’s minds to consider other businesses with more open mindfulness. Contrary to this, in the eCommerce domain, exposure to other businesses is less prominent which poses a resistance barrier in approaching and trying new businesses, and thus keeping the people remain loyal to the already tried webstore, sometimes despite the bad experiences.


Extensive reach promotes loyalty: One advantage to eCommerce businesses is their ability to deliver their customer beyond the restricted boundary set by the locality where their operations exist. This doesn’t only have positive implications for the business, but also for the customers who want to remain loyal. Now, thanks to eCommerce, customers can buy products from their favorite businesses irrespective of where they live. Moving to a different city or town is not a problem: the business can deliver there as well. If a customer is having a great experience with a business and the prices are right, it’s unlikely they’ll consider moving away from it to a competitor and the system of online shopping makes this a possibility by not being bound by boundaries.


Reasons to come back: Another reason why people remain motivated to keep coming back to the same online store is that it helps people build their profile in the environment of the webstore which makes their buying experience more positive. Furthermore, tools such as personal recommendations, wishlists, the ability to place a repeat order, and notifications when their favorite product is back in stock, enable businesses to make the customer feel valued and respected with the sense of a personalized experience. Plus, these and other tools featured on eCommerce sites create a “reminding effect” reminding customers to visit and interact with the webstore more often. For example, many stores have subscription services where they regularly mail subscribed customer about deals and offers encouraging them to keep visiting their stores.


Conclusion 

While the reasons discussed in this article can be said to be some reasons that direct us to believe that customers tend to be more loyal to online businesses than traditional businesses, we cannot adhere to these implications with a 100% guarantee. Since various factors are involved in deciding the dynamics of anything it cannot be limited to just a few considerations. However, it can be of help to consider these points with caution that every business dynamics are different and what applies in one situation doesn’t necessarily apply to another. Pondering on these will, however, provide a perceptive to businesses against which they can evaluate their business.


If you’re looking forward to establishing an ecommerce store, then x2xeCommerce can provide you with the relevant expertise and help you establish an ecommerce store. Moreover, as an integration solution provider, the x2x team would also enable your eCommerce platform to integrate with your existing business solution to help you realize a unified business management system. An example of an integration solution by x2x includes the x2xecommerce RMH-Shopify integration solution. Reach out to the x2x team for any query or a free demo.



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