Tips for Setting Up An Online E-Commerce Shop
As long as people do their shopping online, then e-commerce sites will continue to thrive. Anyone with a brick-and-mortar store can tap into the benefits of selling merchandise to thousands (if not millions). What determines a successful e-commerce site is the attention they put into the website’s construction.
Just like setting up a physical shop, your e-commerce site must act as a digital manifestation of your business plan. First, determine the product you want to sell. Next, create a realistic budget to help you get that product to the masses. Above all, make sure there are enough promotional outlets to access it. Listed below are a few tips on how to begin setting-up your e-commerce business.
Understanding Your Product
Before you get started, you need a product that will sell. In case you haven’t decided yet, consider a field you have experience in. Screen-printing, for example, is a profitable venture for anyone with experience in graphic design.
Whatever you plan on selling, you’ll need a supplier for materials. If you make your own product, then you’ll be relying on whatever supplies you can get you hands on. Some might go the easier route of selling wholesale products, but that means abiding by the company you’re dealing from.
Choose a Platform
Creating an e-commerce website is easier than ever. Most sellers will operate out of established marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, and Etsy. The bolder route would be to build your own online store. For this, you’ll need the right hosting platform.
Most hosting platforms come with pre-set site templates and inventory building tools. Try experimenting with Wix, Shopify, and BigCommerce during any of their free 15-day trials. Moreover, each platform provides necessary features like social media integration, abandoned cart recovery, and an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certification to give your customers a flexible, secure experience.
Pricing & Shipping
Once you’ve settled on a product, you can move onto the hard task of price setting. This is where the finance portion of your business plan comes in. Tally up the costs of materials, taxes, payment processing fees, and other expenses. Figure out how much you want to add to pay yourself and your workforce (if any).
Since all purchases will be mail-order, shipping is another vital expense you’ll need to plan for. E-commerce sites typically offer a flat shipping rate, but that could drive up prices. One way to alleviate your customers’ shipping anxieties is by offering free shipping. You could raise the product’s price a bit to cover the cost.
Depending on your mindset, promotions can be the fun side of business ownership. Another way putting it is finding what your buyers want from your brand.
The abandoned cart recovery feature can help you pinpoint customers who are on the fence. Offer them an exclusive deal to motivate them into checking out. Reward coupons for half off if customers follow your business Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram accounts. Use a separate e-mail account to send out digital newsletters with monthly discounts.