If you are aspiring to become a successful online retailer in today's eCommerce biz then you have to survive many adversity which comes in starting a business. Due to various reasons many start ups succumb after some months of their operations. This is basically due to lack of planning and gap in transforming ideas into reality. I am not saying this to demoralise you but to make yourself more aware and ready to face all kind of adversity to realise your online eCommerce dream. As you have put your hard earned money and time into this business. While starting you need to keep few things in your mind, that just like in physical store brick mortar is essential and also the design of the store plays very vital role in its success coupled with services to make it a success. In online eCommerce also these things will pave the path of success for you. So, with this article I will point out 10 basic things you should know while starting an online store.
1.Customized look and design of online store. This is the first thing you should keep in your mind while building an eCommerce website i.e. how would your store look like? what is the actual theme of your website? Choose best design and unique theme for your website to make it classy in style and beautiful in looks. Hire a web design company having good track record to design and customize it for you because you need support after your site is up and running, which is unexpected in case of freelancers.
2. Keep it simple and functional. While finalizing design and customization of website you should ensure that basic functionality of the site should be very simple yet stylish, which compels the user to navigate into it. User must feel very comfortable while navigating your site from selection of product to checkout all steps must be very clear and simple to make it a pleasurable shopping experience for them.
3. Make it convenient for the user. As I said in step no 2 that your website should be very simple and its functionality should be very easy. You should keep in mind that only the favourable customer experience can boost the sale of your online store. To ensure that you should understand the need of basic customer features which should be clearly available in your store i.e.
- Clear product and price display along with its features.
- Various section should be clearly available.
- Images of product should be original.
- Payment method.
- Customer Service/inquiry.
4. Choose a secure Payment gateway. This is very important part of your online store which should be robustly secure and easy to access. Payment gateway of an online store helps user to pay their online bill through credit or debit card. User would share his/her financial information only with the secure payment gateway having a successful and secure track record. So carefully select your payment gateway to get credibility of buyer because any instance of fraud would ruin your online business dream
5. Security threat must be efficiently handled. Hackers and spammers are always in the search of loosely secure website or store to perform their malicious activities. If your store is not having safety from virus attack or from hacker activities then your online dream can be in danger at anytime. Unsecure website can easily lose its product, money and credibility of buyer if it becomes a victim of any such kind of ill online activity. While designing your website ensure that your store is very secure with good quality of coding.
6. Build credibility among users. This is very vital part of your online store because this is not a brick and mortar store where buyer ensures everything before buying. In online business everything depends upon the faith of buyer. If your online store is selling goods at good price deliver the goods in appropriate time and the payment gateway and other functionality is efficiently installed then these features help to get buyer confidence upto certain extent rest depends upon your marketing and brand building activities because brand recognition is very important factor to win buyers trust which subsequently boost sale of the store.
7. Regular updation of your website. For a champion online store it is very necessary that all the latest products are being displayed categorically. New arrival and offer section should be clearly visible. There should not be any broken link in the website all products must be actively available. Outdated or obsolete products must be immediately discontinued and withdrawn from the display. Overall your store must compels user to buy with its wide array of products and art of display.
8. Customer service. While navigating any customer may need additional help or need more information about product or service you are offering. This condition may arise pre sale or post sale, to ensure real time customer support and service there must be a toll free voice support mail/sms automation should be activated to ensure customer about their purchase and shipment information.This practice increase customer’s faith in your store because a delighted customer is key to success.
9. Social sharing and customer reviews. It is a very vital practice now a days followed by all small or big companies to increase their presence among user/buyer. Social sharing and customer reviews are very delicate topic to deal with, it should be closely monitored by some responsible person. Reviews of the customer may be mixed in nature which is very obvious but it needs to be dealt with positive action by enhancing customer service and product offering. Social updation should be on regular basis to increase user interest in your product and store.
10. Shipping cost strategy. While deciding shipping partner please ensure that what would be your shipping cost? whether it would be charge by the buyer at the time of checkout? or the price of the product is managed in such a manner that shipping is added in it, else if you want to offer free shipping then costing should be priorly decided while finalizing your shipping partner. Best practice for this would be to let your shipping partners decide the cost. So, it is implicated with this article that building a successful eCommerce website is a mixture of good idea imbedded with efficient implementation.