Managed IT

What your customers look for when shopping online

Written by Victoria Wilson

If you're a business in the retail sector, or running an e-commerce site, understanding consumer behaviour and preferences is essential for success.

Consumer advocacy groups and cyber security companies alike have warned consumers about the importance of online safety, which means they are more educated than ever before about the risks of shopping online. This information is shifting consumer behaviour, causing people to think twice before entering personal details to make an account or handing over their credit card number.

With a heightened risk of retail fraud (59% of retailers say that the level of fraudulent transactions has increased in the last year), establishing trust with your customers through secure shopping is extremely important.

We've compiled a list of the top security and service criteria that customers look for when shopping online...

Does your IT security strategy address their concerns?

A highly-available and stable website

Customers are very likely to abandon a webpage that takes too long to load. Even worse yet is a site that crashes or lags in the middle of the 'checkout' or payment process, leading them to doubt the success or authenticity of the transaction!

When your e-commerce site and IT network are hosted in the cloud, your platform can scale to meet demands, meaning fewer site crashes and high-availability during seasonal traffic spikes.

If you haven't recently evaluated your backup or disaster recovery plan, then don't hesitate! Your entire IT network can be replicated to a secure, secondary site, which can be easily invoked at the first sign of unexpected downtime or network 'traffic jams'.

A secure payment process using minimal data

Nearly half of consumers reported that better security or fraud protection would encourage them to use card payments more. However, just 53% of retailers say they are adequately prepared to fight fraud.

Many customers prefer when they can complete their purchase giving as little data as possible, so re-consider how complex or personal your process may seem to the consumer.

Make it clear on your website that your platform and hosting are PCI DSS compliant, and don't neglect the basic step of making sure the green padlock is in the address bar (representing a secure certificate that traffic to and from your website is encrypted).

2FA or MFA to secure their account

With so many widely-publicised data breaches involving credit card and bank details, consumers are warming to the idea of two-factor or multi-factor authentication for any account where they share payment details.

Although these security features are rare on e-commerce sites, consider leading the way and implementing 2FA or MFA. This can help dramatically to reduce the number of fraudulent transactions, and demonstrates to your customers that you take their cyber security seriously.

Authentic reviews from customers who trust your brand

In a survey of UK consumers about trust, 79% said that if trust broke down for some reason, they’d switch from a brand, with 49% doing it immediately. Even if consumers can be notoriously fickle, your brand's reputation is still your greatest asset.

When all the components of your IT and cyber security strategy are working together, your customers will be able to trust your business and make purchases with confidence. Allow your focus on security and consistency to speak for you!

Engaging the help of a MSP is an excellent way to build trust with your customers as a retailer.

With the strategic help of a managed IT services partner, you can easily prepare your retail business for future growth. We provide the technological expertise and strategic insight to evaluate your IT network and suggest some good options: with clear costs outlined.

  • Scalability - build a foundation in the cloud, where you can scale out with ease
  • Stability - benefit from real-time traffic monitoring and incredibly powerful servers
  • Speed - experience low latency and data recovery within minutes
  • Savings - access enterprise-grade datacentre technology at a budget-friendly cost
  • Security - PCI DSS Level 1 guaranteed, plus cyber-security expertise from our team

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