As online shopping and adaption of personal management web technology apps continue to grow, small and large businesses are expanding their reach and realizing the benefits offered to both their business and their customers by incorporating e-Commerce. Today, it is no longer enough to offer only the traditional brick and mortar distribution and field services. An integrated Online Shopping Experience and Account Management added to your ERP will provide a service that customers today expect, while also allowing the business to offer customer service reps, route sales drivers, and salespeople. Additionally, all regional distribution and field service companies are able to compete with many of the larger online industry leaders. Early adopter industries, such as Office Coffee Service, Bottled Water, Welding Supplies and Food & Beverage Distribution, have already seen the benefits of maintaining an online presence.
Prism’s Webstore suggests delivery days based on route, customer-specific pricing, and authorized item lists; these are features that an average B2C web store cannot provide. It allows customers to sign in and place product orders, pay bills, and submit service requests. It enhances user-experience with item images and search options to explore items by category, keyword, previous orders, promotional items, and new items. These are just some of the broad range of features provided by the Prism’s Webstore. There are many more options, such as customer email alerts for orders or promotions, customer-specific pricing, and ability to take orders during non-business hours, and these are just to name a few.
Studies by Pew Research Center show that nearly 80 percent of Americans do at least some shopping on the internet (compared with 22% in 2000), with 43 percent shopping online "weekly" or "a few times a month." and 48% of online shoppers have bought or spent more than planned when shopping online.
E-Commerce is both growing and thriving, propelled by consumer interest and demand; small businesses that are not participating are missing out on both sales and advertising/branding. Studies indicate that 74% of small businesses have no e-Commerce, so those who are including a web store on their site are able to connect to a growing sales market.
In 2016 and 2017, Walmart bought leading internet properties Jet.com and Bonobos.com to extend their digital marketplace. Meanwhile, Amazon.com has recently purchased Whole Foods to afford them regional brick and mortar distribution of their grocery products. Additionally, many major public companies offer online bill pay and account review today. All the aforementioned companies are keenly aware that they must be staying up to date with current shopping trends to win and keep customers in 2017 and beyond.