It's no secret that the e-commerce industry is growing faster than ever. In 2021, e-retail sales worldwide exceeded 5.2 trillion U.S. dollars, and it's expected to continue growing. Many of the world's e-commerce companies are still clambering for a substantial piece of this lucrative pie. But what about small businesses? How can they compete with these giants? Well, there are several ways, but one way that is often overlooked by local businesses is building an e-commerce app.
What is an e-commerce app?
An e-commerce app is simply a digital version of a physical store. As a business, you can have this digital platform to sell products and services instead of having customers wait in line or travel miles from home to shop in a store. You're offering customers the luxury of shopping on their mobile devices.
E-commerce apps differ from mobile websites because they're built with dedicated store interfaces. It makes it easier for mobile users to shop online. Because they're built specifically for shopping, e-commerce apps take advantage of unique features on mobile devices, like location awareness and touchscreen interactions. It also optimizes the user experience, so shoppers can find what they want quickly and easily.
An e-commerce app offers more functionality than just selling items in a single marketplace. It includes taking inventory, processing orders, and managing shipping options through the same platform.
Benefits of building an e-commerce app
The benefits of an e-commerce app are numerous. For one thing, it's easy to use and update. This is why many people build their apps instead of buying existing ones. They want to customize everything from the product images to the checkout process and payment options.
The other significant benefit of creating your local e-commerce app is that you can tailor it specifically for your business needs, which means you'll scale faster than an off-the-shelf solution. If your customers can find what they're looking for with a few simple taps, they'll be more likely to purchase. Customers are also more likely to return and buy again if their experience is seamless.
Having an in-house app will ensure that customers never have trouble finding exactly what they need when shopping with your brand or business. With an e-commerce app, it's also easy to track all the products you have on hand at any given time.
4 Things To Consider When Developing A Mobile Ecommerce App
Data security should be at the top of your list when creating any digital product. For example, for a seamless experience of an e-commerce app, users are prompted to give their personal information, including their home address, credit card number, and phone number. These data are too valuable not to protect. Whether your local e-commerce app is used by consumers or other companies, all information must be kept safe from any data breaches. Users shouldn’t feel uncomfortable with their transactions.
The good news is that many data security issues can be avoided by following the following tips.
Encrypt Sensitive Data Using HTTPS
Use SSL Certificates To Protect Login Pages From Sniffing Attacks
Regularly Update Usernames And Passwords In The Database
Keep Your User Information Secure by using a private cloud
Create An Alarm System To Detect And Report Data Breach In Record Time
Scalability is the ability to grow and adapt to the changing needs of your business. You need to be able to scale your e-commerce app as required, both in terms of traffic and features. As you get more customers, you need to ensure that your app has enough resources available, so it doesn't crash or slow down under heavy use.
To build an e-commerce app that is scalable, one crucial thing is processing large amounts of data quickly and efficiently without slowing down the user experience. This includes all processing aspects, such as ensuring images load speedily and users can search through products effectively without waiting too long for search results pages.
Your app's user experience is essential in building a thriving local e-commerce app. The user interface is the first thing people see or witness when they open your app. Hence, it should be simple, easy to use, and intuitive.
User interfaces can be tricky because you have to balance usability with aesthetics. A great way of accomplishing these goals is by using minimalism—keeping things simple so that users know exactly what they're supposed to do. There should not be too many options or choices distracting them from their goal. Make sure every feature in your app is easy for users to understand without having to read too many instructions or watch long videos about how it works.
As you continue to build your e-commerce app, you'll need to think about how you can integrate with other apps and platforms. Of course, the more apps and platforms that are integrated with your app, the more functionalities it will have.
APIs in e-commerce apps can be used to:
Integrate your mobile application with payment gateways such as Stripe or PayPal
Sync customer data from one place (your website) to another (a CRM system)
Connect users' social media accounts like Facebook or Twitter to make it easier for them to log into their accounts.
Integrate AI tools such as financial calculators
Integrate your product catalogue with a third-party API for accurate and efficient data sharing.
There are many things to consider when building a local e-commerce app, but these four are necessary. First, don't get bogged down in the details, and keep your focus on the big picture. Then, when the time comes for implementation, look at how you can make it easier for users to find what they need whenever they need it.