If you’re new to the world of e-commerce or are simply toying around with the idea of starting an online store, you’re in luck. There’s perhaps no better time than now to get started given the boom of web-based businesses and the fact that there are so many platforms available to newbies. After all, consumers today are more comfortable than ever with the concept of shopping online than ever before as e-commerce sales continue to explode.
However, that doesn’t mean that building an e-commerce empire is a walk in the park. While there’s certainly money to be made, creating a store that succeeds requires a keen attention to detail and an understanding of what makes your potential buyers tick.
If you want to get more serious about your e-commerce business, keep the following tips and ideas in your back pocket. These can be applied across e-commerce niches; however, much of your success boils down to your respective industry.
Now, let’s get started!
1. Keep Your Costs Down
Although it may sound like a no-brainer, you should strive to keep your budget as tight as possible as you launch your company. Many web-based entrepreneurs make the mistake of splashing cash in pursuit of profits; however, such a strategy rarely pays dividends. Saving money as a small business owner is an absolute must-do; likewise, you should treat your e-commerce site as a business rather than a side-project.
2. Be Careful With Physical Inventory
Ideally, you can run a business which sells digital products which boast low overhead, ultimately avoiding the headaches of shipping costs and returns. That doesn’t mean that all hope is lost if you’re working with physical inventory, though. Simply keep the following in mind:
- If you’re working with products you’re creating yourself, think “less is more” in terms of inventory and scale accordingly once sales start taking off (think: don’t publish 1,000 physical copies of a book until it’s been vetted by buyers).
- If you’re starting a drop-shipping business, make sure that you’re getting your products from a trustworthy source and give yourself some wiggle room with shipping dates accordingly.
- Be mindful of how you’re pricing your products: bear in mind that having a low price point can come back to bite you due to hidden fees such those related to shipping and returns.
3. Make Your Products & Descriptions Buzzworthy
In short, you should strive to craft your store in such a way that each product is worthy of going viral regardless of what you’re selling. Think about it: you can’t just slap some products on a site and expect results. You need to build your own buzz through the following strategies:
- Snappy product descriptions which integrate keywords related to your industry.
- Eye-popping imagery that shows off your products and makes your potential buyers want to see more.
- Making your store easy to share: clear social integration and big buy buttons are an absolute must.
If you’re hosting your store on WordPress, there are plenty of smart e-commerce plugins to help supercharge your storefront.
Building an e-commerce business from scratch is easier said than done; however, keeping your budget in check and emphasising the strengths of your products is a solid starting point. Regardless of what you’re selling, keep these tips handy even before you make your first sale.