Some of the common questions asked by consumer brands are enumerated below.
We welcome discussions on e-commerce strategies as consumer behavior changes demand that we look at engagement with renewed lenses ever so often.
Why do I need a direct-to-commerce/consumer (D2C) when I can sell my products on E-commerce platforms?
For the same reasons, you want to ‘build’ your brand. To understand your customer better, to build a stronger, more loyal customer base, to not give your bottom line away to e-commerce platforms (that operate on YOUR margins), to not be killed by a white-labeled product on the same platform, to understand how to innovate, to scale up one step at a time, to vend according to your own terms and conditions, to not remain at the mercy of wholesalers, to not be forgotten amongst thousands of other retailer tags, and to build singular brand visibility. To be known as your ‘brand,’ and have genuine direct access to your consumer. To create value.
Need more reasons? We have lots of coffee. Purchased online from a direct-to-commerce brand :)
Setting up direct-to-commerce is not only expensive but painful. So why should I do it?
Nothing worth having comes easy. Standing up to the big guys is no piece of cake. Only entrepreneurs who believe in themselves will take this step.
Setting up direct commerce is more expensive than third party platform integration. However, unit metrics become more manageable in the long run if seasonal discounts and apocalyptical end of the world fire-sales are managed. Competing on pricing is tight with e-commerce platforms where you do not stand out.
With direct commerce, there’s more room for product investments, higher quality goods, and a better bottom line. Direct e-commerce also enables direct communication with consumers. Someone who shops on a direct commerce website is more invested in the product, experience, and brand. It then becomes the brand’s responsibility to innovate and experiment in line with consumer feedback. All of this, in turn, ensures a loyal consumer base and lower acquisition and retention costs.
How do you help the traditional organisational structure morph if e-commerce is an integral part of my business strategy?
We love (e)shop talk. In a continually evolving digital landscape, every business will need e-commerce. Embracing digital commerce isn’t a choice anymore; it’s a necessity. Setting up digital operations means changing traditional organizational structures, and this involves all departments.
HR will have to recruit technical resources; Finance will need to integrate online payment gateways, Marketing will have to focus on building multi-channel customer support, and so on. Tech like machine learning, robotics, and AI will play an essential role in driving’ digital-first cultures’. Hence, ‘morph.’
We build the layer of e-commerce processes required on a business’s current operational model. Through audits and recommendations, we also efficiently automate traditional tasks while reducing go-to-market time and operational errors.
In time, these processes also improve the reporting structure as more data is available readily, which enhances the business with insightful decision making and growth .
Do we need to custom-build everything?
Not at all. Over the last few years, the entry barriers for direct to commerce businesses have reduced significantly.
Pre-built tools and customization enable a smooth transition to direct commerce. However, businesses need to prioritize the purpose and utility of these tools before choosing to implement them. Please don’t jump into the deep end of the pool without fully understanding features and test driving them. These tools are accessible but require some understanding of scale, cost, and implementation pain before you implement them. So while there is no need to custom-build everything, fitment plays a vital role in deciding the toolkit.
So far, so good, but what about traffic and conversion?
Ensuring quality traffic and conversion is a subset of the overall direct to commerce strategy. It can be ‘academically’ defined in a few phases.
The first phase is designed for short term objectives, including brand awareness and recall, and tools like seasonal discounts and social media are used. The mid-term and long term strategy requires a robust content strategy and media mix, which aims at building a two-way communication channel.
We follow the Kaizen philosophy, focusing on dynamic change, incremental improvements, and standardized processes. We also help you map out after-sales support, upselling, and product placement strategies through data analysis and experience. And this is how the flywheel begins to spin.