There is no doubt that the eCommerce industry has become one of the most lucrative industries to come into. It is a fast-paced world, and surely requires a good knowledge of the industry, diligence, and some reasonable level of assertiveness to start.
With this piece, we hope to make it easy by giving you a breakdown of all you need to know before successfully launching an eCommerce business.
1. Find a niche.
You need to make up your mind on the niche that most interests you. You could choose to settle for a niche for different reasons, ranging from your passion to the hot-selling niches; whatever it is, don’t be a jack of all trades; settle for a niche, if possible, a product for which your brand will be known.
2. Choose a model
Choose the eCommerce business model that suits you. This will require some research and study, but it’s all worth it at the end of the day. There are about five models for eCommerce, these include;
a. Traditional Online Retailing. This is the generally known kind of eCommerce. It requires having a warehouse for stocking goods, keeping an inventory, and delivering orders.
b. Dropshipping. This model neither requires a warehouse or delivering inventory. When customers order, you send the orders to a supplier who ships the product directly to the customer. In this model, a lot of peer-to-peer shipping takes place, hence you want to be sure your supplier is working with a good shipping company as your customers won’t want excuses. Visit this site for more information on peer-to-peer shipping in eCommerce and why you simply can’t afford to get it wrong when it comes to shipping your customers’ orders promptly. You may be surprised just how efficient things have become today compared to traditional shipping arrangements in the past.
c. Private labeling. Private labeling is for entrepreneurs who have product ideas but can’t build factories for production. They can leverage companies that have factories and are willing to make tailored products for the entrepreneur. The manufacturer can also ship directly to the customers.
d. White labeling. This model mostly prevails in the beauty industry. This is when an online retailer buys an already existing product that offers white-labeling, packages, and brands to his taste and sells.
e. Subscription. This model leverages on subscription to supply customers with goods at agreed intervals.
The process of choosing a niche will help you understand the model of eCommerce that best suits your kind of business.
3. Identify your source.
It would help if you researched to find a suitable supplier of your product. It is imperative to put the cost into consideration when choosing a supplier. You may want to go for the most competitive prices to maximize profit.
4. Know your competition.
It is crucial to find out all you can know about your competition; that way, you can position your business early enough for growth, by doing things differently.
5. Start building your business.
This requires several steps.
a. Choose and register a suitable business name.
b. Choose a name for your online store; this should also be your domain. This process requires that you find an available domain name, and this can sometimes be quite tasking.
c. Do all your paperwork. Get all your business permits and licenses to avoid issues in the long run.
d. Get a logo. It is good to get a simple and unique logo.
6. Get acquainted with SEO practices.
Search Engine Optimization helps you increase traffic to your site as well as increase the visibility of your website in search engines. What’s an online business without SEO? It is a crucial tool for marketing your online store.
7. Set up your store.
Now that you have followed the above steps, it’s time to build your eCommerce store. You might need the help of a skilled web designer to get the work done except if you already have the required store. You, however, want to ensure that your store is optimized to attract traffic, as well as converted. Ensure that you have an appealing and user-friendly interface and integrate an email marketing and automation funnel; this will help you maintain conversion.
8. Launch your online store.
Now that you’ve followed the pre-launch steps, you can now go live. You have to market your store to potential customers diligently. Remember that it’s not enough to draw traffic; the aim is conversion; you want to sell and make profit. Note that eCommerce retailers invest generously in online marketing.
The following insights will help you market your store successfully;
a. Use targeted ads. These are ads that are narrowed down to people who are most likely to need your products.
b. Drive traffic from social media platforms. Create social media accounts for your business across several platforms and build your followers. You can also use paid Ads on your social media handles.
c. Use analytics to monitor your progress and also get insights on how to improve.
Other things you can do as you grow is responding promptly and warmly to customers, create an email list, send customers interesting content via email, offer your customers coupons and discounts. You can also find bloggers and social media influencers who can talk about your product. You can pay them or send the samples of your product. Once you’ve got these basics, you are on your way to becoming a prolific eCommerce entrepreneur.