5 Tips for Starting an Online Store
There are several things you should keep in mind if you decided to launch an online store. We’ll focus on 5 key points that will help to make your business venture a success.
1. Do Research
It is always a good idea to do research. You probably know what you want to sell, how you want to sell it, and what the market for your product is like. With proper market analysis, however, you’ll get valuable information that will help you make informed decisions and fine-tune your schedule.
Begin your market analysis by choosing products or a product area with potential. It means there should be a demand for your products and that you can actually make money selling them. One tool you can use to see what products people are searching for is Google Trends. Type in the names of the products you intend to sell and compare them to one another. Google Trends are a good reflection of what the situation looks like in reality.
Analyze your competitors, i.e., companies that sell the same or similar products. For example, you want to sell services on an academic platform and you know there is a https://www.buy-cheapessay.com/buy-thesis-paper with similar objectives. What do they do well? Identify their strong points and make them your own. Are there too many competitors selling the same thing? Then, maybe the market is saturated, and you should consider selling another product? Think about what you can do in terms of price or services — the two things that will make people shop in your online store. Knowing your USPs (Unique Selling Point) before starting an online shop will help you in many situations.
Finally, you should identify a market niche you intend to operate in. At the initial stages, it can be complicated and expensive to sell too many different products. By identifying a unique niche, you can attract customers who want specific products, keep your prices down, and provide better services. It will also help you achieve good results on the search engines — you’ll have a set of very specific keywords and phrases to focus on.
To sum up, you’ll need to:
- Choose products with potential
- Analyze your competitors
- Identify a unique product niche
2. Choose a Suitable Platform for Your Online Store
Once you have done your market analysis and decided which products you want to sell, you should choose an e-commerce platform. That can be one of your biggest decisions (and perhaps even the most difficult one). There are many online platforms to choose from(e.g., WooCommerce or Magento), but choosing the one that suits you will depend on a number of factors.
- What budget do you have?
- How much money are you may invest in your online shop per year?
Search for different suppliers and analyze their start-up and operating costs. Make sure that what you need is included in your annual budget.
- Unlimited product range
- Easy upgrade opportunities
These are some of the most important things to consider.
What features do you want your online shop to have?
Should it be in multiple languages? Should the products be available in different variants (e.g., sizes, colors, etc.? Also, make sure that your online shop provider can offer you the features you need.
What should your online shop look like?
Should it have a completely unique design, or should it be built using a template (to keep the starting costs down)? Who are your potential customers, and what are their preferences? Answering all these questions will help you make the right decision.
What are the appropriate payment solutions?
Finally, you should think about what payment systems and shipping solutions you want to use. There are many payment providers out there, and most of them let you make payments using credit cards and invoices.
- Which payment methods do your potential customers prefer?
- Which of the payment providers ensures the greatest security and does more conversions?
- Which is the most effective shipping method?
Discuss these aspects with your e-commerce provider.
3. Optimize Your Store for Mobile Buyers
Many consumers cancel their purchases because the online store they were shopping in was not optimized for mobile devices. Make sure you have a responsive online shop whose design is automatically adjusted to the visitor’s screen size. That will provide your audience with a good shopping experience regardless of the device they use (e.g., a PC, tablet, or smartphone).
4. Get Started — Test Yourself
Plan and analyze, but don’t get stuck in that swamp for too long. Don’t spend too much time on small details. You will never know for sure how customers will behave in your online shop (with best electric bikes or other products). Get started, test yourself, and learn from your mistakes.
Also, ask people you know to visit your online shop and provide you with feedback about their experience. That will let you get some valuable tips on problems that you can address right away and features that you can implement in the future.
5. No Traffic Means No Sales
Once your online shop is up and running, you should think about attracting traffic to it. There are three different types of traffic you can focus on:
- Direct traffic
- Organic traffic
- Paid traffic
Our final touch will be discussing those types in detail.
It refers to people accessing your site without intermediaries like Google. Since your online shop is brand new, you’ll have trouble getting direct traffic. At this stage, not many people know about its existence.
It refers to unpaid traffic that you receive from Google and other search engines. To get it, your online shop needs to be properly optimized. By conducting keyword analysis, you’ll know what products you should invest in to boost your search rankings. You should constantly come up with new products and categories, as well as provide information about your product niche. Also, you may seek collaboration with bloggers and opinion-makers operating in your market segment.
It refers to traffic that you get through ads on search engines, social media, or other websites. For example, you can review all your keywords and buy ad space in the search results by using Google Ads. You pay per click (i,e, per visit), set your own budget, and choose which keywords you want to appear in the search results. It’s a great way to draw traffic to your store at the startup stage and let people know that you are there. To encourage visitors to make purchases, you can also use so-called re-marketing advertising. This way, your ads only target individuals who have already visited your store.