Building a good eCommerce site will help strengthen your brand’s reputation and expand your professional network. However, if you’re just starting out, this can seem like a complicated task that requires a great deal of technical knowledge. Luckily, with so many eCommerce platforms, that is not the case.
If you can afford it, you should consider hiring a professional Shopify development company that will get the job done in no time. If, on the other hand, you want to do things on your own, these 6 tips will help you get started.
Have a Solid Strategy
In order to ensure the success of your eCommerce development process, you need to begin with a solid strategy. Think about all the details that are important to you. For instance, offering outstanding customer support could make a great difference in the eCommerce world.
Try to predict your most important challenges and needs as your eCommerce business grows. If you’re selling physical products, think about how your shipping is going to work. If you plan to sell digital products, consider the delivery and bandwidth options you will need, as well as any time or payment limitations.
Another important strategy to have in mind when developing your online store is SEO. Try to define your marketing strategy before you start building your site, and begin with search engine optimization early on because it can take months before your SEO strategy yields results.
Choose an eCommerce Platform for Your Site
With the rapid growth of eCommerce, it’s essential to have the right technology to underpin your strategy. While you could hire a professional web developer, those costs can significantly inhibit your ability to grow. Choosing to hire an already-developed eCommerce platform saves you time as well as money.
Another important aspect you should have in mind is security. In today’s digitalized world, customers need to be sure that their personal data will be protected at all times. For that reason, if you want to build a reputable eCommerce brand, choosing a secure platform is of the utmost importance.
Design Your eCommerce Website
When designing your eCommerce website, think about what you want to include besides your products. Your site will be a place where you will make all your transactions but also a place where you will communicate with your customers and build relationships with them.
Start by selecting an eCommerce theme that reflects your brand and enables you to showcase your products in the best way. In addition, create logical categories to make it easier for customers to find what they’re looking for. Try to figure out who your target customers are so that you can design your website with their needs and preferences in mind.
Every decent website also needs to have a contact page containing multiple channels through which customers can reach you (phone, email, live chat, and physical address if applicable).
Don’t forget about visuals as well. In the world of eCommerce, visuals are everything, so make sure that your photography is high quality and shows the products from multiple angles. You should also your logo for recognition and branding, as well as payment logos and trust marks to make customers comfortable shopping with you. Adding videos to your e-store is another good idea as it is a great way to boost engagement. Product videos are also a compelling way to lead prospects towards a purchase.
Set Up Pricing and Payments
When it comes to payments, there are two aspects you need to think about as you’re developing your online store – how you will price your products and how your store is going to accept payments.
First, when pricing your products, consider the cost of raw materials, shipping, web hosting, taxes, as well as fees and deductions from credit cards or PayPal.
Next, when deciding your customers are going to pay, you’ll need to find a third-party payment processing company like PayPal, Stripe, or Square. These payment options enable you to accept payments from anywhere and they are very secure, so your customers won’t have to worry about their credit card details being compromised.
Create a Simple Checkout Experience
Abandoned shopping carts are one of the biggest problems for eCommerce retailers. Research has shown that the average cart abandonment rate is nearly 70%!
Here’s what you can do to reduce the risk of cart abandonment while developing your e-store:
- Be clear about shipping costs upfront;
- Offer free shipping wherever you can;
- Enable customers to buy multiple items at once;
- Send cart abandonment emails whenever somebody abandons their cart;
- Make sure your checkout is optimized for mobile.
Always keep in mind that a complicated check out can have an extremely negative effect on your sales, so try to keep things simple.
Market Your eCommerce Store
Once you begin developing your online store, you need to start promoting your product in order to attract the right customers and drive sales. Your marketing plan should include:
- Email marketing to directly reach your customers and inform them about new offerings;
- SEO-optimization for every product page in order to enable people to find your store online;
- Linking your online store with social media platforms;
- Adding a blog to your website to share relevant & engaging content, establish yourself as an expert, and attract new customers;
- Creation of discounts and coupons to drive sales from loyal customers.
Developing an eCommerce store isn’t an easy task, but it’s a great opportunity to keep your business competitive, raise brand awareness, and provide access for your products. These six tips will help you develop a functional online store without too much fuss.