When setting up an online store, you have to make many decisions about what you will sell, how you will find customers and how you will deliver your orders. In addition, you also need to consider aspects such as the appearance and features that your site will have.
The online store is characterized by certain operating principles that should be learned. You must also remember that not all solutions dedicated to online stores will work perfectly in your case.
The success of your website will be determined not only by what you sell, but also by the fact which function you choose.
Online Store – Product Selection
Surely you already know in which industry you will operate and slowly start looking for products that you intend to offer in your online store. A voice on the back of your head tells you that you should have enough product on offer to attract as many potential customers as possible.
But think about it again. To sell a lot, you must own and store these goods. This means that one of the more serious costs you will have to incur is those associated with storing them in a designated place.
In addition, the increased number of goods offered may also result in spending more funds to expand your site and increase its readability.
You’d better take an example from e-commerce giants. When you look at the websites of the most popular online stores, you will see that they sell a small number of goods: a dozen, a maximum of several dozen.
So it’s not about you having everything in stock. Bet on what seems like the best choice and what your customers will definitely buy.
Online store and the type of site
You will definitely need to decide based on what type of website you will operate. Will the platform or a dedicated store prove to be more helpful to service your clients?
The store is dedicated to a special type of website that allows the owner to launch his e-store at a professional level or to transfer an existing store to a new platform.
This gives us the opportunity to maximize the adjustment of websites to specific customer requirements and to create a system integrated with other applications it supports.
In turn, platforms for implementing an online store can be divided into paid and free. The ones for which you have to pay can be a ready-made license, based on which you can launch the website, but there is no possibility of any changes.
The same applies to other types of paid platforms, where the user can only make small changes, sometimes even cosmetic ones.
However, the truth is that both in the case of a dedicated store and platform you have expensive tools at your disposal, the functions of which can be used or not.
In return for preparing the store, you will only pay for many functions and customizing the appearance of the store. A nice website or gadgets placed on it will not bring customers to your store.
So think about whether it would be better to look for a free platform to put up your online store, and spend the money saved on positioning or buying banners.
Customer and customer again
You probably already know this, but you have to make it clear: buyers are the foundation of their operations. It doesn’t matter if you sell online, face to face, or pack orders.
No company or online store will survive without people ordering products and services. There must always be someone who buys and someone who sells.
For you as an online store seller, this means, among other things, that you should wisely divide your store budget into store performance and marketing campaigns.
Remember that the store must work well. If the page loads indefinitely because it contains so many elements, it will discourage every customer. That is why it is worth using the services of specialists.
There is one more thing to keep in mind when running an online store. The customer is the value you have to focus on. Bet on service at the appropriate level and try to end each transaction in a way that will leave him a good impression.
We know, sometimes there are problems, complaints. However, you must treat them as an integral part of your business. Imagine that the person who sent you another e-mail about a broken product is just as frustrated by the situation as you are.
It only depends on your attitude whether the buyer will come back to you or move to the competition.
Do you know that 95% of online stores die in the first year of their operation? Think about it and remember that every customer is at a premium. You can’t survive without him.
Online store and its logistics
Your business will revolve around winning orders and buyers. Don’t overtake your competition just because it offers a faster and easier delivery method.
Now, when there are many online stores on the network, most of them have products at the same or similar prices. Because these amounts cannot be reduced indefinitely, you must try to fight for the client in other ways.
Many sellers try to add freebies, low cost products to their orders, which the buyer finds a nice addition and thanks for shopping. You can try the same, but you must remember that these freebies are not free for you. Even if their price is low, it will not be the case if you order a thousand pieces.
However, you can offer something different. Bet on the speed of order processing. Your online store will not contain many features, which means that the ordering time should be short.
Add fast delivery. Do not save money on gaining the satisfaction of your client, and he will definitely come back to you. Express delivery of ordered products will be one of those elements that will make their desire to buy from you remain.
Fast order processing can become your hallmark, and thus something that will make your site recognizable on the web, and the online store will gain recognition and reputation as a sales point. Sometimes good feedback is enough to attract more buyers.
How to run an online store?
The first and most important thing – a transparent website. It must be designed according to the latest standards. It is worth submitting the ready project for testing to experts to assess whether it is convenient to use.
The e-store website cannot be full of ornaments, videos and other accessories – simplicity and transparency are valued here. Take care of a logical division into categories and a convenient product search engine.
The customer cannot have any problems with the transaction. Internet users often give up a purchase if they do not understand its rules or cannot handle the forms on the website.
First of all, simplicity – thanks to it, the online store will be customer-friendly.
Bet on positioning. Optimize the website for SEO – take care of good product and photo descriptions, tags and headers. Consider using the so-called long tail.
Let your brand be ubiquitous. Make sure you add the e-store to catalogs and online sales agents. If you have funds, bet on promotion using Google ads. The company logo should be distinctive and nice to remember – try to display them in many places.
Set up accounts on popular social media sites – preferably on a few at once. You can use them to promote your store as well as to communicate with customers.
In social media, building and strengthening relationships with the audience is key. Organize interesting competitions, present products, fuel discussions. Interaction with Internet users can bring great benefits to the company – thanks to it you will learn more about their preferences, behaviors and habits. Take advantage of this invaluable knowledge.
Consider implementing content marketing. Internet users can be attracted to the e-store with interesting content – so do many companies. By regularly adding valuable texts and multimedia, you will build confidence in the brand.
Keep an interesting newsletter for your customers, in which you will be informed about new promotions, changes in the store, valuable products, etc.
The internet allows you to conduct remarketing – take this opportunity. It consists in persuading people who previously looked at him but didn’t buy anything to return to the store.
Many people give up even at the last minute, having already selected products in the basket. Thanks to the so-called Cookies and Google ads can attract a large portion of them back to complete the transaction.
Offer customers a wide range of payment methods – Paypal, fast transfer, credit card. Customers often give up their purchases when they don’t get the method they usually use.
Establish cooperation with courier companies that offer fast and convenient parcel delivery. Customers almost always care about short delivery times. Constant cooperation with suppliers can reduce shipping costs on the buyer’s side.
You can attract customers not only by price, but also by assortment. Take advantage of the long tail principle in trade, which says that more profit than bestsellers is generated by a large number of less-sought after products. Your online store will definitely benefit.
Finally, you must remember one of the more important rules – an online store is about working with buyers: one satisfied customer will tell you three people, one dissatisfied – ten.
The bill seems clear. The more you apply to serving your customers, the more you will benefit. Do not limit the funds allocated to all marketing activities, because they are the foundation of your business.