China is very much ahead of the Western world when it comes to e-commerce. In fact, it has been for a number of years for various reasons. Many Western businesses are not taking advantage of tried and tested techniques adapted in China, which have a much better success rate in boosting sales.
Here, we explore a few tips that the majority of Western businesses could utilise.
Same day shipping
The number-one reason why many think that companies in China constantly produce better results is because of the speed of their delivery.
Same-day delivery is uncommon in most other parts of the world, but it is a service that some companies in China do offer. Some even offer it free of charge.
How much would it increase the chances of you ordering something from a store if it was delivered on the same day for no extra cost?
Research by Fortune.com was carried out on JD.com, who offers a same-day delivery service in China. An article on Fortune’s blog shows that last year their sales numbers increased 100% from the previous year.
JD.com is now Alibaba’s leading competitor in China. As of last year, JD offered same-day delivery to 43 cities across China, and this number has since increased.
This could be an incredible breakthrough if this was something Western businesses adapted on a larger scale as it’s proven to increase sales.
The issue that some see here is cheap labour, which simply isn’t available in the Western World. However, JD.com, to their credit, have spent hundreds of millions of dollars improving their delivery service, and many industry experts say a similar service in the western world is viable with significant investment.
Third party payment
One of the biggest fears that people have of buying online is that you can never be certain who is taking your money.
With China being one of the riskiest countries in terms of buying and selling fake goods, almost every website in the country has Alipay or another third-party provider as a payment option.
Now, initially this does not sound very impressive. Why? Well, PayPal is offered on just about every e-commerce website in the West. However, Alipay is like Paypal apart from one key factor, something that is being introduced slowly in the UK and US. Their concept makes it very hard for sellers to find a way around selling fake or poor-quality merchandise.
The use of a third-party payment option makes it easy to retract payments if you are not happy with the product. In fact, the payment is only released to the buyer once the customer has accepted that the goods are as displayed. Essentially, it’s like an Escrow service but for every day purchases.
More than 80% of all online purchases are made through a ‘specialist’ third party provider like Alipay in China. In fact, many physical stores now also accept mobile payments. The development of technology and how it is used to make purchases is miles ahead of the UK and US and it’s directly reflected in the number of online sales.
Fashionibi predicted that at this rate, the number of online transactions in 2015 in China will account for 12.4% of the total retail business throughout the country. When this is compared to 8.3% in the UK, you can see a huge difference.
In order for the western world to improve online sales, some fundamental changes need to be made to the whole of the sector. However, there are a number of points you, as an e-commerce business of any size, can do to boost sales using the Chinese market as a reference.
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In any instance, if you do own an online store, make sure you explore the online marketing services we offer to help drive more sales for your business. To speak to a member of our specialist team, feel free to get in touch today by calling 0161 452 7146.