These are some best practices for what it looks like to build a strong customer base and promote ecommerce services in Australia today.
September 1, 2014
There's a wide range of things to bear in mind as you triangulate a new ecommerce selling territory, especially one as far-flung as Australia. As much as you might be getting familiar with the country—by learning about how it boasts one of the fastest-growing ecommerce markets, or how its shoppers have impressive buying power — Australia needs to get to know your business, too. You might be wondering, then, how you actually import your brand to the country. After all, that is how you’ll build your reputation and bolster sales among buyers who don’t yet know your business.
With a third-party logistics partner at the ready to handle your order fulfillment needs, importing your brand to Australia should be smooth.
This is actually a bit of a no-brainer: Be reliable at every interaction with customers. When they have questions, make sure your customer service function is equipped to answer them. That means your customer care team needs to be well-integrated with the rest of your company so that information travels quickly among various teams involved in the logistics process.
Australian buyers appreciate the convenience of goods delivered to their doors, particularly those living in remote regions of the continent. To build trust in your service, you need to deliver an experience on which they can rely. That means getting products to them with accuracy and timeliness, just as you would anywhere else in the world. If this isn’t something you can do yourself, look into partners like Shipwire. Outsourcing can provide you with more options and faster service levels, which customers are demanding at an increasing rate.
One of the primary features Australia ecommerce buyers value is the power of choice. So, where possible and cost-effective for your business, try offering a variety of shipping options: super-fast for those customers who are willing to fork over for speed, and ultra-cheap (even free) for those who don’t need their items right away. That covers your primary bases for shopping cart abandonment, as shipping costs and time lags can be big deterrents. You can go the extra mile by eliminating uncertainty and by letting your customers keep track of their shipments.
Use social media to your advantage
Sometimes you just need to get on customers’ radar—or, if it’s been awhile, to remind them that you’re out there. Social media savvy is important both for active customer acquisition, but it’s also key for keeping your finger on the pulse of what potential customers want.
To spread the word and ensure you’re hearing about and responding to any customer issues, it’s important to be active on social media, where Australians increasingly gather to learn about a business or share insights into their experiences with a company or product. Some 84 percent of Australians have smartphones, meaning they’re constantly connecting to the web to do research and discover new products and ideas. By establishing an engaging online presence at the outset, this is an area where you can have an instant advantage ahead of the established brick-and-mortar and domestic competition—it’s a channel such businesses have so far overlooked, even as Australians turn to the web to engage with and learn more about companies they’re considering buying from more and more. When it comes to business style, Australians tend to appreciate being straightforward with a touch of humor – not unlike the approach you’re probably already using when interacting with North American buyers. So your content likely doesn’t need to change much.
To actually convert Facebook likes and SEO optimization into sales, make sure your user experience is set up to guide the user seamlessly through your purchase process. And don’t be afraid to explicitly promote your products even while simply engaging with users about the brand.
In the hyper-competitive ecommerce market, winning repeat buyers admittedly takes some hustle, particularly before the stickiness of customer loyalty you’re working to build really takes root. You’re already winning them over by delivering a fantastic order fulfillment experience, but remember that the way you package your goods can leave a strong impression. Be sure that your primary packaging material communicates your brand’s values and puts your product in the best possible light. And don’t be afraid to sell customers a bit on the rest of your catalogue by including inserts or offering a special promotion for ordering a second time or sharing their experience with friends. Repeat purchases can help build habits so that you become a regular stop for shoppers as they browse the web.
With Shipwire’s new Australia ecommerce warehouse equipped to address your every order fulfillment needs, you can focus on the heart of your brand that actually sets your business apart. If you’d like more information about how Shipwire can take your business to the next level—and continent—take a look at our FAQs.
Download our complete guide to ecommerce in Australia for more information on what you should know when entering the market and see our previous post on Understanding the Australian Market and Shopper.