Will GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) Effect the Way eCommerce Business is Done?

Not everything that happens in the world of technology and data acquisition is meant only for geeks; at times there’s something for the end users as well. To find out what benefits this bonding would bring, let’s first do a bit of a flashback.

For the past year and a half, there’s so much going around GDPR, or General Data Protection Regulation, which is the most comprehensive data privacy law to date. The European Union’s GDPR, a data protection law that passed in the EU Parliament in 2016 and which came in to force on May 25, 2018, aims to facilitate the rights of individuals to own their own data and any business handling that data must keep it secure.

The General Data Protection Regulation will mandate any company in the European Union and well as those who do business inside the EU, to adhere with strict new rules regarding the collection, storage and use of customer data. This includes all forms of customer data, such as pictures, social media posts, IP addresses, bank details, consumer history, and any numbers like an SSN, that relates to the identity of a customer. The step is to safeguard consumers from companies that may misuse their data and to help them allow and manage their data for only its intended use.

If we take a look at the impact of GDPR on eCommerce, it will cause significant change because eCommerce runs on customer data accessible on CRM, EDM, PoS and BPA systems and companies use of that data as per the needs of their business. The GDPR will now apply to all such data that is being channelized for marketing, sales, HR, and accounting purposes. In simple words, any form of digital data that is stored or processed will fall under the new regulation and eCommerce businesses will need to comply with it.

Once implemented across all the verticals of business domains, the GDPR will empower the EU consumer to be the all-encompassing owner of their data and allow them to review, adjust, erase, and restrict the processing of their data. The consumer has to make an online request to the eCommerce company and the company will have to close the request in no longer than a months’ time. In addition, if there is a need to delete any copies of personal data that is public, the companies are required to initiate a request to organizations, like Google who has already set up a process to speed things the requests.

eCommerce businesses cannot afford to make mistakes since there is so much at stake. Any infringement will attract fines of up to €20 million, or 4% of their annual revenue. Data must be stored securely and eCommerce businesses that store data using third-party software applications are solely responsible for the encryption and back up rules while protecting their customer data.

However, for eCommerce companies utilizing the cloud for data storage and access, the transition can be easy. For bigger players, significant resources will be required to become fully compliant with the regulation. The companies that rely on in-house servers or customized software solutions will require a team to assess the risks, test measures and follow processes to protect data from input to deletion.

According to the terms mentioned in the GDPR, every eCommerce company is considered the Data Controller who is responsible for the collection and safe storage of their customer data. The Data Controller will also be able to gain consent from customers and visitors to use their data in a GDPR compliant way.

To make sure that the business is fully compliant with the regulations, the company can recruit a Data Protection Officer (DPO), integrate advanced privacy tools, evaluate data security systems, train the staff, and hire services from a third-party provider who is GDPR complaint.

If you are in an eCommerce business and serve customers in the European Union, you may now need to be concerned if your business in not GDPR compliant. We know that GDPR is giving many of us sleepless nights and a run for our money, but it is for a better future of dealing with data securely.

Get your Ecommerce Store Ready for Holidays

The holiday season is almost upon us. Outing, shopping, decorating a home, etc.  are the most popular things people love to do in their holidays. According to the research, it is predicted that people love doing shopping online as compared to the offline store. Today’s people believe in living a smart life, whether it’s about food, cloth, hotels, etc., every time they use their smartphone to explore things online near their place. So, this post is generally created for online businesses, so that they can understand and able to manage the upcoming 2016 holiday season traffic towards their store.

Read below points that you really need to keep in mind for your online business expansions.

1. Improve the checkout Page:

A number of website owners, drops in conversion rates and shopping cart abandonment on a checkout page seems a quite bitter fact of e-commerce life. So one should think over it and create an amazing path to boost conversion rates at the final stage of shoppers. Plus, facilitate them with everything they actually require while making a buying decision.

So it is important for all website owners, focus their efforts on their checkout optimization to earn richer user experience as well as ROI. But unfortunately, shopping cart abandonment becomes an unmanageable and uncontrollable aspect for many retailers which shows that customers invading the checkout page only to shut down the browser before shopping. To keep these things in mind, we have created this post to help e-commerce business owners to make their online store user-friendly and cut-down shopping cart abandonment from their store.

According to the recent survey, it is analyzed that where shoppers abandon their cart they will never visit the particular store again. So you should work hard for the improvement of the checkout page to eliminate the unwanted distractions during the users’ final decision or purchase.

Step you have to consider on your store to optimize the checkout page;

  • Experiment with “One-Step Checkouts” page. Yes, this shortest, single-page checkout process to give your customers an incentive to complete the purchase in mere minutes without facing unnecessary complications.

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  • Add popular security seals like SSL, Norton by Symantec, McAfee at your checkout page to know shoppers that your website is a secure, trusted place to make a purchase.

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  • Make sure to leave sufficient space in between all fields/buttons to avoid confusion and misstepping where the user clicked.

2. Prepare Your Website to Handle Heavy Traffic:

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Sharing A server with hundreds of websites can potentially lead to a bad user experience. So look for a dedicated server which can cost more than 200 dollars a month. Not for all, but for the few, the increased amount of a dedicated server means money is well spent instead considering how much holiday revenue would be lost if your website’s server went down.

The most initial thing that you really need to be prepared for your website is a high traffic volume. Many online users visiting your online store or product pages which can lead to server latency, slowing down the load times. However, the few extra seconds not only sounds a big deal, but  it makes a huge difference, especially in e-commerce. If your site takes more than 3 seconds to load the page, apparently, you could lose your potential buyers up to 40%.

You can take help of Google Analytics to check how your holiday traffic looked like in a past year, so accordingly you can prepare and make the necessary adjustments with your professional IT team to make sure that your digital infrastructure is durable and reliable enough to withstand all types of online pressure.

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Despite the benefits of shared hosting plans, it has also included some drawbacks that you may not be aware of. Read on to learn…

  • The security issue is one the major disadvantages that server faces during the holiday season. Shared servers are generally more susceptible to hacking attacks. If any malicious activity on the server, it will affect the network of whole websites that are using the same server.
  • With the overload of traffic, the server may get swamped and caused to block or stop the website.
  • The hosting plans you are using may not have many features than the dedicated hosting plans have. In addition to this, the customer support may not be as good as those of dedicated plans.Shared hosting is relatively cheap as compared to other dedicated plans. So, go with a plan that offers your business excellent features along with great customer service.

3. Speed Up Your Website:

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Let your shoppers find your store online easily through strong organic search. You can make all pages of your site fast and speedy on all devices by choosing the suitable server for your business. Web performance optimization tool will out-perform in every aspect including conversion rates, traffic, sell-throughs, speed, and, most importantly, ROI.

Utilizing Speed optimization services for your website are an ideal way to enhance the store performance along with improved conversion rates and search engine ranking. Moreover, these services will lead to increase the speed of your store’s front-end at a fast pace and results in higher customer engagement and online sales.

Though speeding up your web store with a professional configuration can be of tremendous help. In regard of this, you can take help of certified developers of Envision Ecommerce, who support you with speed optimization services and render you with the best possible outcome for your business.

Despite that, Gtmetrix is another great software that allows you to know the current performance Report of your website. This software facilitates you to check the performance scores which include Page Speed Score, Page Load Time, Total Page Size, YSlow Score, etc. Even it can also give you  better solutions and suggestions for the required web page of your site to optimize the speed. Visit www.gtmetrix.com to know more about Gtmetrix.

4. Prepare your Coupon Codes for Blast Sale

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The holiday season means special discounts, or deals, or offers. As online business owners try to out-do one another, and procure a greater percentage of that holiday revenue pie.

The CEO of Plus Voucher Code, Davide Bau said that “We see an increase in store submissions months before the holidays, as everyone from retail giants to smaller local businesses is eager to get their holiday coupon codes on the Internet.”

Listed the coupon codes on the major coupon directories is one the greatest ways to convert more of your traffic into complete a purchase before leaving your site. It’s good if you consider an exit-intent popup to show your abandoning traffic offers, as an instant discount code, or something like free shipping, entice your potential buyers to stick around your store and happily complete their purchase.

5. Plan your Contents

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It goes without saying that holidays are the perfect time to make your relationship with your customers stronger, and drive huge traffic to your online store, and increase sales.

In order to do so, you have to stay in front of your ideal customers, create an extra buzz, decide a website theme for your holiday schedule, increase the frequency of your social media updates/blog posts, launch a sale, a newsletter, a new website, or a new social media campaign and last also think about the help to manage content during holiday seasons. Promote press releases and blogs on good blog portals to divert high traffic towards your site.

6. Ensure 100% Support

Generally, holiday shoppers expect to have a good and positive shopping experience. Try to make your contact details available on all pages of your site so that your customers can easily ask their questions regarding the purchase, if they needed, or you can install Zendesk Chat (Formerly Zopim).

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Zendesk Chat is something which helps you to talk with your potential customers in real time. It makes easier for thousands of businesses to engage with their customers every day over Live Chat.

Lechner said that “You may want to consider adding temporary help to answer the additional calls if you think you will need it.” In fact, he also added that “A simple answering service can ensure you don’t miss a call and lets customers know you plan to get back to them quickly.”

7. Make Payments Safe and Secure:

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After the announcement of Google that the Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is now a search ranking signal, many online retailers have been switching over HTTPS due to its plenty of benefits. HTTPS offers an eco-friendly environment for the personal detail of your customers.

9. Do Multiple AB Testing:

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Thoroughly test your website to make sure that all pages of your website load quickly and work properly. Just proof-read new copy and fix the broken links, if any, because your site reflects the quality of your products to customers.

10. Choose Social Platforms To Increase Your Visibility:

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If your site doesn’t have social sharing buttons or icons on your product pages, then you should add the following features to your store. Share your products via social media to allow your potential shoppers to talk about your goods and services, which is completely a win-win for your holiday marketing.

Facebook is one of the most favorable social networking sites worldwide and it is analyzed that as online shopping or website visiting done by more Facebook users as compared to the other online users. So it’s best for businesses to promote their brand on Facebook to make the online traffic double.

Many e-commerce businesses depend upon different tools and software like if you are using a WordPress-based shopping cart, then experts highly recommend the online business owners to add Easy Social Share Buttons for product pages or If you use any other e-commerce platform/solution, then look for addons or plugins to enhance the site’s functionality.

11. Optimize For Mobile Devices:

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Is your website mobile friendly or not? If not, then you will definitely lose 40 percent of your sales. There are a number of small online businesses rely on the holiday season to help fund their entire year. So get ready your website for mobile users also, because if 40% sales go somewhere else, your business could be in huge trouble.

According to our recent survey, we analyzed that out of 100, 90% people spend more than half of their day on their mobile phones to read, learn, play, shop etc.

12. Email Marketing is Must:

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If you aren’t doing email, then start it now or if you are doing, then it’s time to up the quantity. What all you need to do is, asking yourself the following:

• How often will you send a promotional email to your potential shoppers?

• Have you ever offered special incentives to your email subscribers?

• Are you creating subject lines to win the attention of your shoppers?

• Are you asking your shoppers about returns?

13. Make Cosmetic Changes In Website:

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Decide how you want to make your site look festive. You can use season-specific graphics, images and much more to create a one of a kind look for your store. Plus, you can also call certain deals or products on your home page and create gift guides, or popular list or other tools to help your customers to find easily what they actually looking for.

Now go ahead and put a little extra holiday cues on your hard earned store to divert heavy traffic towards your site. You can also take the help of a professional team of Envision Ecommerce to improve the conversion rates and sales of your online business. For more info, click here www.envisionecommerce.com.