By 2040, 95% of all purchases will be made online, by 2021 the e-commerce industry will be worth $4.5 Trillion and by 2022 China will no longer be the biggest e-commerce market. The E-commerce industry is offering the biggest opportunity of the 21st Century, is your business ready to be a part of the changing landscape? Is your e-commerce platform equipped with efficient catalog quality checks to convert traffic into sales?
The prime challenge for e-commerce is not their competitors but lower conversions. Only 2.86% of e-commerce traffic converts and almost 30% of products purchased online are returned.
Lower conversion rate and higher return rates are perhaps the biggest dilemmas for an e-commerce enterprise. Amazon India said “It sees a direct correlation between returns and products that have poor descriptions, details, and photos”, and it makes sense. Poor catalog fails to assist customers to make informed decisions while incorrect attribute values create the wrong perception of a product, which leads to return.
Can Improving Catalog help E-commerce Platforms Increase Conversion?
The fact that “69% of shoppers agree to buy from a site that answers questions related to the product” and “9 out of 10 users will buy a product, if it is visually represented well”, tells us that quality catalog will turn traffic into sales.
Now that we have data telling us “the success of e-commerce lies in the quality catalog”, let’s discuss quality checks that help e-commerce businesses improve their catalog.
5 Catalog Quality Checks Every E-commerce should Incorporate:
1. Images (Blur, Cropped, Graphical & MRP)
Image is perhaps the first thing any customer notices about a product, also through images it is easier for users to recognize the product they are looking for. By improving image quality, e-commerce platforms can offer better exposure to products and increase CTR.
When Images are blurry, cropped or too graphical, they can confuse customers. Blurred and cropped images can easily piss the customer off or lure them into ordering wrong products. When images are not quality checked for blur and cropped, they can deceive costumers leading to lower conversions or higher return rates.
Also running catalog quality checks on images can help e-commerce remove redundancies like “MRP mismatch”. Some of the most popular e-commerce platforms were caught selling products at a price higher than MRP. They were caught by customers who were attentive enough to look at images provided intricately.
Must Read: 10 Tips to Improve Seller Performance
2. Attribute Values
E-commerce platforms are investing heavily in catalog enrichment services, which traverses the catalog of products that were returned for errors. It often happens that sellers upload wrong information deliberately to rank higher in search results. Such incorrect attribute values lead to an increase in return rates.
For example, A seller can list a watch with “waterproof” as one of its attributes; customers looking for waterproof watches will order the product. Once the product gets delivered, the customer will realize, it’s not a waterproof watch and will apply for a return.
Through rigorous catalog quality checks, such deliberate attempts at marketing can be controlled. Every time a product is returned, both marketplace and seller loses money hence an e-commerce player deciding to invest in catalog quality checks or catalog enrichment will benefit heavily.
What are Some other Benefits of Including Proper Attribute Values?
- E-commerce enterprises can create theme-based bucketing for popular events and holidays
- Just by mentioning all the attribute values correctly, marketplaces can help buyers make informed decisions
3. Brand & Seller information
Along with catalog quality checks, it is necessary to cross-verify brand and seller info because not all sellers are authorized to sell electronic and copyrighted items. Only registered distributors are allowed to sell electronic items on online marketplaces. In terms of copyrighted items like books and movie DVDs, only authorized sellers can list these products. Since the probability of selling a pirated version of book or movie DVD is very high, e-commerce players need to verify seller info.
What Happens when Brand and Seller Information is not Verified?
- Products get returned because they were either used or pirated
- Overall customer experience takes a dip
- Brand reputation is maligned
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4. Category and Sub-category
Rigorous catalog quality checks will help marketplaces and sellers identify products that are listed in wrong categories and sub-categories. When products are listed under wrong categories, they fail to reflect in relevant search results, which impacts the customer’s ability to make informed decisions.
Apart from less exposure, brand interference is another problem that arises when products are listed under wrong categories. Customers will start to see women clothing even when searching for men t-shirt. Once identified in catalog quality checks, such errors can be rectified through Catalog Enrichment.
5. Duplicate SKU Check
With every passing day, e-commerce is becoming a very competitive space. While customers enjoy access to the same products from varied sellers, marketplaces have a tough time managing multiple listing. Online marketplaces allow multiple sellers to sell the same product but in order to sell more units, some sellers end up creating a duplicate listing of products instead of selling through the already created listing.
Why Sellers Create Duplicate Listings?
Sellers create duplicate listing because when they sell under the already existing listing, they need to provide discounts, faster shipping, and top-notch after-sale service to acquire “Buy Now” on marketplaces. By creating a duplicate listing, sellers can easily avoid all the competition for “Buy Now button” and rank higher in search results.
How duplicate Listing Affects E-commerce Business?
- through the duplicate listing, sellers with a low rating can also rank higher and sell products to customers and then fail to ship product faster, offer quality after sale-services and handle returns.
- Once a customer is duped, he or she will never come back to your online store, which will turn the Customer Lifetime Value to null for that particular customer.
With Amazon ruling the e-commerce space worldwide, it is already tough for nascent players to get their presence felt and failing all the catalog quality checks will only add up to the woes. Every online marketplace should bet their money on catalog enrichment and product discovery to render quality customer service and experience instead of wasting money on coupons and cashback to lure customers.