One of the best things about the internet is being able to open an online store and sell products quickly. Not only do you have a global audience, your store is also open 24/7. This gives customers better access to your products which can hopefully lead to leads and sales.
However, being able to sell online and globally means that you are also facing international competition. There are other ecommerce stores that are selling the same products targeted to your audience. How do you stand out and gain an edge over the competition?
Setting up an ecommerce store is relatively easy. However, getting traffic and sales is another thing. Here are some of the secrets to selling effectively online.
Work Work Work
Now that you have an online store, it’s time to get busy. The first thing you need to do is to drive traffic to your website then provide good customer service and amazing products. The good news is that your overhead cost won’t be as large as running a physical store.
Business will probably be slow in the beginning but this is normal for any starting entrepreneur. The more time you pour into getting organic traffic to your site and promoting your online store, the more sales you will see. However, you need to do this using multiple platforms such as social media, blogging, SEO, paid advertising and the like. You need to tweak and study every day to find out what type of content or which channels generate the most traffic and leads.
This sounds overwhelming but it will get easier as you learn the ropes and learn the best techniques to promote your store.
Choose The Right Niche
The internet is a crowded space with more and more websites and ecommerce sites going live each day. No matter what type of service or product you sell you will always have competition.
This said, it is better to target a niche market because they have less competition enabling you to target more buyers. However, your pool of customers is smaller.
Location has a big role in selling products online. You need to think about shipping costs and logistics in your planning. Digital goods are easier to deliver since can be downloaded and delivered instantly so it will have a different cost structure.
Make It Easy For Buyers To Purchase
One of the most common shopping cart abandonment reasons is complicated checkouts. Visitors tend to have short attention spans so you want to make a good impression immediately in order to make them buy your product. They also want easy checkout so don’t put a lot of obstacles in their way especially in the checkout process.
The 3 golden rules are:
- Don’t force them to register if they don’t want to.
- Don’t make navigation confusing. Put navigation at the top of the page to keep it consistent.
- Don’t make buying process long and don’t request a lot of info from the buyer. The more friction buyers experience the less likely they will complete the checkout process.
Have Great Customer Service
Before customers buy from your website, they are looking for reassurance and you can help them shop with confidence by providing great customer service.
One guarantee is to offer refunds with no questions asked. This works well whether it is an online or brick-and-mortar store. Another way of reassuring customers is by showing that your site is secured and verified by 3rd parties like Symantec or McAfee. This is a must especially if customers have to give out their credit card info. You want to reassure them that their info is safe when buying online.
If you sell digital products delivery should be automatic and shipping should be prompt for physical products. You should also give buyers the ability to track shipping.
Promote Your Store
Competition is stiff in the internet so make sure to promote your store constantly and consistently. Having a blog or a website is not enough to attract customers.
Put yourself in your buyers’ shoes. What do they do when searching for a product?
- Most likely they will go to Google or search engines to search using keywords.
- They will ask for advice from forums or social media networks like Twitter and Facebook.
- Look for recommendations and reviews from websites or social media.
This means you need to invest a lot of time promoting your website every day. You need relevant content and blog on your website and you will also need to find guest posting opportunities on other websites that your prospective customers visit. Investing in paid ads, newsletters and SEO can also help with your promotional efforts.
Our final piece of advice is to be patient. Promoting yourself online and gaining a following of loyal customers take time and effort. Don’t give up because while it is challenging, the rewards will be worthwhile.
Take advantage of the online shopping boom by working with web design services for businesses in Australia with Creativ Digital. Our ecommerce design team can customize a store specifically for your business.