A study recently released by Assurant Solutions finds that over 40% of small-to-midsize businesses say the reasons they have a hard time competing with larger e-tailers is a lack of product expansion opportunities and IT integration skillset.
The survey polled 450 merchants across the United States in an effort to gauge the state of ecommerce for smaller businesses.
"SMB merchants see great benefit in selling products and services through their web storefronts, but they readily admit to challenges that prevent them from selling more and competing with larger companies," Assurant says. "In fact, roughly a third of those polled (34%) said that between 25% - 50% of their annual revenue comes from online sales. More than a third (35%) said their online sales have grown by 25% over the past five years."
56% are missing out on a chance to generate additional revenue by increasing their average order value, the survey finds. Less than 10% of online sales come from up-selling or cross-selling at the time of checkout for these merchants.
Over 43% say they want to increase their up-sell and cross-sell opportunities, but can't add organic products and services that fit the mold or they lack the internal IT skillset to integrate products into their ecommerce platform.
“It’s clear that smaller merchants want to amplify their online sales potential, but many of them are unsure how to make it happen cost-effectively,” said Matthew Pufall, Director of Product for Assurant Product Protection.
Over 26% of merchants said more complimentary product offerings would help them sell more products and services online. Another 26% said easier integration into partner platforms would do the trick.
Over 15% said support services provided by partner providers would help, while over 27% said products and services that enable more revenue opportunities would. Nearly 5% said they're not interested in selling more products online.