7 eCommerce Challenges and how to solve them

Selling online has never been so difficult. With COVID-19 forcing the hands of practically every business to shift their attention to eCommerce, we now have to deal with the aftermath. Saturated markets across the board but without the same purchasing power of the people. Inflation has hit too hard to maintain the oversupply of certain industries, so companies need to overcome the newly arisen challenges that have been created by the global economy.

Stefan Hackl, 04.10.2023


The Challenges

1. Fierce Competition

Challenge: As already mentioned in the introduction, the increasing competition in the eCommerce world is equally exciting as it is worrying. Since the trend clearly points towards an online-heavy future, businesses need to look into ways to stand out from their competition.

Solution: The obvious answer here is differentiation. Yeah, duh, but if it was that easy, everyone would do it and if everyone would do it, the result would be the exact opposite of differentiation. The clue is to find your brand's unique value propositions, offer exceptional customer service, and communicate your strenghts better than the rest. Invest in understanding your customer's pain points, your own niche and your competitors to find your competitive edge.

2. Cart Abandonment

Challenge: Customer Journeys can be long. From seeing a first ad of your product to the final decision to purchase it, the sales-cycle can take ages. During this time, there are usually plenty of touchpoints between your product and the prospect. Every one of these touchpoints bears the risk of the user losing interest in your product or even worse, the prospect goes to the competition. Most of the time, the actual buying process holds the most risk, which includes everything from choosing the products on your Website to the actual payment process.

Solution: There is a couple of ways to go about this, but optimizing the complete funnel and offering the best customer experience possible. Good examples would be a user-friendly website design, streamlining the check-out process, or leveraging the power of product configuration.

3. eCommerce- & Payment Security

Challenge: Concerns and uncertainty about the usage of an eCommerce service or a payment method can deter potential customers.

Solution: Using trusted payment gateways and following industry standards for encryption should be a given. As a bonus you should also communicate them effectively by prominently displaying security badges if available.

4. Inventory and Supply-Chain Management

Challenge: Especially in a VUCA world, where constant and unpredictable change dominates a lot of industries, stockouts and overstocking are no rarity. As a result, this will lead to lost sales and increased costs.

Solution: This is actually one of the toughest challenges to overcome at the moment – simply because it is so hard to predict in which direction the economy will go from here. Generally speaking, implementing inventory management software to track stock levels, forecasting demand, and automating reorder processes can be great ways to optimize inventory management. Leveraging the power of AI in this field can also be greatly beneficial and being an early adopter can really set your business apart from the competition.

5. Meeting Customers' increasing Expectations

Challenge: While more and more shoppers turn to eCommerce solutions for their needs, their expectations also keep increasing. Amazon showed that convenience and customer experience come a long way and constantly being compared to the retail giants can be quite challenging.

Solution: The key takeaway we have for you here is: "Not all size fits all". Online-Stores have tried to copy Amazon and failed miserably. Customize your offer to your customers' needs, market your products to the individual customer, not the masses and leverage new technologies like AI, Augmented Reality and 3D Configuration to keep your customers engaged.

eCommerce Infographic

6. Product Returns

Challenge: Depending on your return policy, this issue can become a neck breaker for your business. Just look at Zalando, who have a product return rate of over 50%. However, the possibility to return a product without any hassle is part of their exceptional customer journey and they swallow the return rate with their incredible sales volume.

Solution: Now you can either aim to sell as much as Zalando, or you can aim to reduce product returns to an absolute minimum. If you don't happen to be a big clothing retailer, we recommend the second option. So, what triggers a product return in the first place? An unsatisfied customer, who expected something else from a product. How do you negate unsatisfied customers? Be as transparent with your product as possible. Use example images how the product looks like in real life, or even better, use Augmented Reality, so your customers can place your product into their own environment. The cherry on top would be to give your customers the option to configure your product, so they can create the best version for their needs out of it.

7. Building Customer Loyalty

Challenge: The Customer Aquisition Cost of a new customer is almost always higher than retaining the relationship with an existing customer. Yet, a lot of companies place their full attention on acquiring new customers and as a result lose out on returning profit.

Solution: The first and most important step would be, to shift some efforts from acquiring new customers to increasing customer loyalty. Producing content exclusively for existing customers can be a great way to interact with them and gain their trust even more. However, don't just bombard them with upselling opportunities, but rather offer relevant content, that is useful to them and leave your products out of it completely.


Being successful with eCommerce is tough these days. In fact, it is so tough, that between 80% and 90% of all eCommerce businesses fail. We hope, that showcasing the (in our opinion) most important challenges and presenting you with possible solution approaches helps you to be more aware of the hidden perils.

end-to-end integration to various systems

If you want to learn more about how Roomle can help you to overcome your own eCommerce challenges in terms of improving your customer journey and visual product presentation, feel free to contact me directly:


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