From the past few years, there has been an increasing trend in online shopping around the world. Today, the number of people purchasing from their home or mobile devices than driving to stores has grown significantly in numbers. In 2021, it is expected over 2.14 billion people worldwide will be buying goods and services online –almost half a billion increase from the year 2016.
However, like traditional businesses, online businesses are also prone to failures. Therefore, when setting up one, you should spend a good time to lay the proper groundwork. Though once your eCommerce business is set properly, it becomes easy to run and gets profitable as well. But the hard part is getting it off from the ground first.
That is the reason why you should keep these eight things in mind when starting an eCommerce business this year.
1. Think of a Good Business Name
The first thing to keep in mind when setting up your eCommerce store is choosing a good and unique name for your business. It should be different from what others are using and must let people know what it is actually about when they first read or hear it.
When you name your business keep it short and sweet so customers can easily remember it. Further, it should be something that has a lower risk of typing errors. And once you have chosen your name, register it. That will help you to keep the rights of your business name to yourself.
2. Make Sure to Secure Your Domain Name
Your business name is the ideal domain name, but it’s not available, try something similar to that. Choose a URL that seems relatively easy to say and spell. Keep it smooth without any hyphens, so it’s much easier for people to type.
For instance, if you are opening an online sport good shop with a name as Sunny Sports Goods, and if the same domain name “SunnySportsGoods.com” is not available then try something like SportsGoodsbySunny.com
3. Choose the Right Platform for Your Online Shop
It’s essential for businesses to pick the right eCommerce platform that suits their business needs. There are plenty of platforms that can help you start selling quickly but you should ideally choose one that helps you in the long run.
Choose a platform that’s popular, well-supported, and produces handsome looking online shops. And if you want to keep away from the coding, use hosted platforms that will allow you to sell your products following just a few simple steps.
Shopify, Wix, WooCommerce and Volusion are some of the popular platforms to build your online store easily that contains lots of themes and functionality. Get more details about and choose one that suits best to fulfil your eCommerce business needs.
4. Design Your Business Website Appropriately
Your website should be simple, yet it must be able to grab visitors’ attention quickly. Design your website in such a way that it looks appealing to each of your visitors, meanwhile, people can easily understand and find everything they need on it.
Website designs play a pivotal role in engaging more visitors, therefore, for your eCommerce business success, it’s imperative to have an excellent website design with smooth navigation and great photographs. You can hire a designer to create an attractive website for you, or you could just purchase a good theme from WordPress that satisfies the design you have in your mind.
Though it may be a considerable expense in the whole process of starting your eCommerce business, it’s a one-time investment that goes a long way in helping your business grows significantly.
5. Pay Attention to SEO
Just like in a brick and mortar store, the number of people entering inside the store is important. Similarly, in an eCommerce store, the number of people visiting it is equally important. There plenty of strategies to attract people to come to your online store but one long-term and highly valuable strategy is search engine optimization (SEO)
On a daily basis, around 3.5 billion searches are made on Google each day, a good percentage of that consists of things that people are interested to buy either in-store or online. Therefore, being an eCommerce business, you should never ignore the importance of search engine optimization.
When you implement the right search engine strategies for your business website, you get better incoming traffic on your website. Hence, it helps you generate more revenues by selling in more numbers than before.
6. Ensure Multiple Browser Support and Mobile Devices
Online customers are always looking to have a smooth and easy shopping experience. At any online store, if they find difficulties, they will quickly switch to the next.
When you design your online store, make sure that the whole site is working correctly with multiple browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Internet Explorer, etc. Don’t miss on potential customers having a website that doesn’t support a particular browser.
Similarly, make sure it’s fully responsive with multiple mobile devices iPhones, Androids, Tablets, iPads etc. In last year, 54% of visitors use mobile devices to check online stores, while around 30% of them made purchases through their mobile devices. The numbers of people using a mobile phone to shop online have been increasing. In fact, it’s much more likely that people will be coming to your website using their mobile devices rather than a desktop.
7. Get a Social Presence
Everyone is on Facebook today, and your store should too. It’s an excellent direct marketing tool that you can use to promote your product, interact with customers, answer their questions, and give discounts.
It should also go without saying that the products displayed in your social media accounts must have a link to your eCommerce store. Therefore, if a customer is interested to buy a particular product he or she can reach to your store by a single click.
8. Include Terms & Conditions, Shipping and Return Pages
When you are running an eCommerce store it’s important to protect your business in every way possible. Always include Terms & Conditions page which sets the rights and responsibilities of anyone using the site.
Moreover, don’t forget to include a link to your shipping and returns policy on your store website. That is because at many times customers are unaware of the shipping costs when they make their purchase, which often results in pulling-out from the purchase process.
Not to forget including the returns policy as well on the homepage, so that your customers know what conditions apply when they want to return a product.