Working with an e-commerce agency isn’t entirely about making it implement your ideas. Its job is to implement solutions that help increase sales in your store. And that means they need to know the answer to one important question. That question is “What does your customer need?”.
Whose task is the most important?
You probably have a lot of ideas for developing e-commerce business. Some of them you must have seen at your competitors, some of them you picked up from smart industry articles. We are wondering something else – how many of these revolutionary changes you are going to introduce are actually able to meet the requirements of your customers? Do you even know what they are looking for in your store? What do they pay attention to? What bothers them and what encourages them to buy?
Knowledge about customers and their needs – which many E-commerce managers sometimes forget – is the basis for successful business decisions, and it is the analysis of their behavior that should be the basis for setting the strategy for the development of your store. With access to this type of information, you can more effectively determine the sequence of projects that you will then commission to the agency. But not only you need to know what the customer wants. The e-commerce agency you work with also needs to know it.
Why should your e-commerce agency understand your customer’s needs?
It is said that every person is different. However, the truth is that as a society we follow certain patterns. Schemes that can be described, classified, broken down into smaller components.
Depending on the industry, this scheme may vary slightly, but everywhere we are able to determine certain common points. Seeing and understanding them is important not only from your perspective (as an E-commerce Manager developing a store), but also from that of the e-commerce agency you work with. Why? Because knowing and understanding your customer’s needs makes you much better prepared to set specific goals for this collaboration.
You’re looking in the same direction
Knowing the needs of your customers means that both you and the e-commerce agency have a common point of view even at the strategy-setting stage. You know what problems to focus on, how to act, and how to arrange individual tasks so that in the end your customers get what they are looking for.
For example: if the problem is too many abandoned shopping carts, the agency will know that the absolute priority should be to examine the shopping process and reorganize it in a way that reduces the number of exits from the site at the ordering stage.
You find a solution that satisfies your customers
By having a clear picture of your customers’ needs, an e-commerce agency can more accurately select the specific tools that will best meet those needs.
For example: when customers abandon your store because of excessive loading time, optimizing the speed of your site will be one of the first tasks you should undertake. An agency with knowledge of the problem will be able to choose the right cashe plugins and implement changes to shorten the loading time of website elements.
You implement solutions according to customer needs
Instead of thinking about revolutionary solutions that will look pretty in a case study (and only there if they don’t bring any measurable change), you focus on solving existing problems. This makes customers more likely to buy from you, and your profits increase.
For example: when customers complain about excessively long order processing time, implementation of sales automation through integration with ERP systems is able to shorten this process significantly.
Give the agency the necessary information about your customers
An e-commerce agency may know the online sales market inside out, but you are the one with the most complete and up-to-date knowledge of your customers. Therefore, it should be your duty to provide all the key information to the Project Manager.
Thanks to that the effects of cooperation between your store and the agency will be more visible. And the goals will be more precise.
What if the agency “knows better”?
If, as you’re setting up your strategy, the agency makes it clear that it knows better what your customers’ needs are then there are two possibilities:
- You’ve given it prior access to Analytics and other tools you use to measure user actions, and the agency has done a meticulous analysis and determined the actual needs of your customers,
- The agency is wrong (not to put it more harshly).
If your situation involves pt. 1 – you can fully rely on the agency’s experience and let it work out a plan. If it is closer to pt. 2, here the situation is clear – you should look for someone more professional.
Standing on your own and forcing your own proposals is one of the basic mistakes agencies make when they lose clients. We wrote about it in a recent article. A good e-commerce agency knows that you are the one with all the knowledge and its task is to find the right solution to your store’s current problems.