What are the Benefits of Online Platforms

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2020 was a challenging year for most businesses. Extended lockdowns, depressed salaries and widespread uncertainty made for a jittery public that was not eager to part with its hard-earned money. However, the period also saw the meteoric rise of companies like Zoom that cater to a remote model of interaction.

Online platforms are the future

The message is clear: the future is all about ‘contactless contact’. People everywhere want the same products, features and convenience as before but from the comfort – and safety – of their own homes. As an example of one company that experienced the effects of both sides of the coin, consider Disney.

The multimedia entertainment giant saw a staggering 91% plunge in profits as its parks were shut down due to coronavirus restrictions. Disney produces films as well and catatonic ticket sales resulting from empty theatres compounded the problem. Its third-quarter losses alone were $4.7 billion, which led to it posting its first annual loss in 4 decades. 30,000 Disney employees were let go as a result.

On the flip side, Disney launched its Disney+ entertainment app just before the pandemic hit on a large scale. With the world spending long periods indoors away from traditional entertainment, mobile devices became the new parks and theatres. The app’s direct-to-consumer model allowed it to bypass public fears and deliver its product regardless of quarantine restrictions.

Now boasting over 74 million subscribers around the world, Disney+ seems to be emerging as the jewel in the company’s crown. It is the ideal example of a pivot to online alternatives done right. No doubt, many of its competitors will be seeking to emulate this wildly successful model.

The shopping bug

While paid home entertainment may be a luxury for many people, home shopping is almost a necessity. With few people eager to share congested supermarket aisles with strangers, 2020 saw unprecedented surges in online shopping statistics.

Adobe Digital Insights reported that sales surged by 77% year-over-year in May. This accounted for growth figures that would have taken 4 to 6 years by all pre-Covid analysis. By 2023, e-commerce retail purchases are expected to rise from 14.1% to 22%.

Just as Zoom and Disney+ latched on to the huge potential markets in their respective fields, this bonanza of online shopping offers savvy retailers an opportunity for massive growth. One of the platforms that has made immense gains in this sector is cs-cart.com.

CS-Cart is an all-in-one multi-vendor platform that allows individual stores and businesses to launch an online store without any prior coding knowledge. It connects each client immediately with hundreds of millions of potential customers.

Established in 2005 and currently the force behind over 35,000 stores and marketplaces, CS-Cart is one of the most reliable platforms in the industry. In a time when online shopping is already booming, it makes perfect sense to partner with a company that has such a versatile, proven system that your business can implement immediately.

The easy road

The significant shift towards online shopping is a phenomenon that few retailers have failed to recognise. Still, take-up has not been as rapid as it should be considering the incredibly encouraging statistics regarding consumer behaviour.

One of the greatest hurdles standing in the way is an unfamiliarity with the online ecosystem. Retailers accustomed to physical procedures find themselves intimidated at having to learn a new way of doing things. Portals like CS-Cart circumvent that by doing all the groundwork for their clients.

The advantage is a ready-to-go system that has been tested and applied successfully by thousands of businesses all over the world. It may be tempting to create your own store independently. However, before you do, consider these figures:

  • 80% of online shoppers are deterred by inconsistent or unclear return policies
  • 88% of shoppers think detailed product pages are crucial to every purchase
  • 49% of online shopping traffic comes from mobile users, which makes mobile optimisation essential

Can you create a portal optimised for multiple devices with detailed product pages and a clear return policy for each product? Perhaps, but it requires an investment of time, effort and money. On the other hand, portals like CS-Cart handle all the details for you so you can focus on the essentials of selling and growing your customer base.

Mobile leads the way

Mobile devices are at the forefront of digital progress and the events of 2020 have only cemented that position. Anyone with a business should be aware of how the data backs this conclusion:

  • 67% of mobile device users use it to window shop
  • 77% of mobile window shoppers make impulse purchases
  • 70% of these shoppers make that purchase within an hour of first seeing the product

Can you really afford to ignore such a large chunk of the potential market? CS-Cart clears the hurdle with its all-encompassing, easy-to-understand and easy-to-implement system. It simply makes sense.