The surprising time your E-commerce customers are shopping (and how to be there to meet them 24/7)

The surprising time your E-commerce customers are shopping

We are in an accelerated E-commerce era, not limited by store trading hours, the need for a parking space, contentious crowds, or inclement weather. Online shopping is convenient – but the needs and trends of consumers are ever-changing.

Have you measured the current habits of your customers’ E-commerce shopping hours? If not, it pays to discover when your optimal advertising, support hours, and bulk of your orders are or should be for the 2021 online shopper. Here are some of the trends to consider.

E-commerce is (still) on the rise

According to Fintech Times, UK E-commerce rose 13% in 2020 from the previous year, reaching £192 billion. The Worldpay from FIS report predicts 20+% of the UK’s purchases will be made online in 2024, totalling £264 billion and BigCommerce reports 75% of E-commerce shopping is due to customers habitually spree shopping at least once monthly.

That doesn’t mean that for sellers, it’s an easy ride.

A recent article from Shopify has suggested that based on an average of 22 studies, 70% of all shopping carts are abandoned. Another study by the Predictive Analytics of E-Commerce Search Behaviour for Conversion notes that 50 seconds of dwell time is the average for either converting sales from landing or leaving a webpage. That’s under one minute to convince and convert.

Time and frequency of online shopping matters

The ability to shop 24/7 is part of its growth. Sleeknote blogger Rikke Berg Thomsen agrees with this popular convenience factor stating that ‘freedom truly is having no closing time or last call to the checkout.’ The ‘nocturnal’ shopper looking for late-night bargains is on the rise.

A BBC online article from September 2019 suggests that many women surveyed found that the only spare time they have to shop is at night before they go to bed. Their days are too busy with work, family, and other life commitments. John Lewis says their peak shopping hours were between midnight and 6:00 am, while Curry’s say 2019 started to show a changing trend from their typical 8:00 pm to 10:00 pm is evolving into 12:00 am to 3:00 am.

More and more consumers will purchase using their smartphones through mobile payments and digital wallets, such as PayPal, Venmo, and WeChat. The UK embraces mobile, digital wallet payments over traditional payment options such as debit and credit cards. The Global Payments Report for 2021 projects that both digital wallets and M-commerce will account for 40% of online purchases and payments.

Delivery is also changing  

With global marketplaces at the consumer’s fingertips, shipping costs are a primary determinate for sales conversion. Shoppers today expect their shopping cart services to have multiple payment options with competitive and economical price rates for shipping methods.

Payment options are no longer timebound to be instantaneous at checkout, as the ‘buy now and pay later’ (BNPL) option is on a rapid rise, such as tools from Klarna and APEXX. And with ‘click and collect’ systems that combine click-and-order with brick-and-mortar, customers are charged at the time of collection.

How to capitalise on these E-commerce trends

The adage ‘time is of the essence’ has never been more true. Webpage speed, shopping cart experience, seasonal sales, support/assistance, delivery, and more are heavily time-coded, and the online shopper is increasingly demanding and a stickler for time.

How can you win? In short, be adaptable and get the tech to support you make changes sooner rather than later.

If you sell on multiple channels and marketplaces as well as your website, you may be reticent to change how you’ve done things.  But switching your accepted payment and delivery options, the time you release products or how you release stock across various channels could win you more business.

The best method for selling direct to consumer (D2C) is to use an order management system (OMS).

Mintsoft is a cloud-based order management system designed to streamline order processing for online sellers. Mintsoft will automatically consolidate all your orders and update inventory from various online shopping platforms and channels and manage the complete dispatch process from picking, packing, and shipping. Not only do you reduce errors, but you can deliver a more responsive and consistent service and grow your business. 

You could try releasing new stock on one channel and see how it sells. Perhaps you could offer a promotion on one marketplace or use a discount code on your site, specifically for these nocturnal shoppers.

With your Mintsoft OMS, you have everything in one place to analyse and test – your dispatch reports and weekly inventory reports, emailed to you at the best time, and your stock is constantly updating across every single marketplace.

You can take a bird’s eye view of the orders received through to shipments you dispatch, which can tie in with your 3PL or warehousing/ fulfilment team.

Your customers shop whenever they want, night or day, and wherever they want across the globe without being tied down by the inconvenience of physical logistics.

With real-time stock management and order fulfilment under control with your new, highly capable OMS solution, Mintsoft has you covered for the next stage of your journey. Book a demo with our E-commerce experts today.