Creating a website that you can use to sell products is a great way to launch a business and start earning more money in today's modern world. Rather than having to pay the rent for your own storefront, and hire people to manage your day-to-day operations, you can handle everything online with a minimal overhead.
However, just like starting a brick-and-mortar store, simply knowing how to launch your business online won't guarantee that you're going to be successful. If you're thinking of starting an eCommerce company, make sure that you avoid these common mistakes and continue to make improvements on a regular basis where possible.
1. Ignoring Customer Service
Just because your clients won't necessarily be dealing with sales assistants on a face-to-face basis doesn't mean that you can ignore the importance of good customer service. Make sure that your customers know what they need to do to have their questions answered and respond to any emails or phone calls you get. A strong service strategy will improve your chances of turning clients into dedicated advocates and brand ambassadors.
2. Complex Checkout Process
Once you've convinced your customer to make a purchase, they need to move through your checkout counter and enter their personal details. Unfortunately, a lot can go wrong during this final stage, as it's easy for customers to get distracted, feel frustrated by a complex process, or even abandon a sale because of security issues. Make sure that your checkout process is as simple, safe and streamlined as possible if you want to improve your chances of conversions.
3. Lack of Shipping Options
Virtually all customers like to have options when it comes to getting the products and services that they need, and this is particularly true for shipping. Do your best to offer a range of shipping methods in terms of price and delivery times. This way, you can ensure that you appeal to every audience, including those who are in a rush to get their items, and those who want to save as much money as possible.
4. Poor Search Function
Most eCommerce stores will sell more than one product. If that's the case for your company, then it's important to make sure that your customers can search for what they need and find the information that's crucial to them. Invest in a search solution that will help your customers to track down their favourite products within seconds, and make sure that each page loads quickly too!
5. No Strategy for SEO
How do you plan on helping your customers to find your business? Do you need everyone to come to you via word of mouth and email marketing? Or can you gain some organic traffic by making sure that you show up for the right keywords and search phrases on Google. With a strong SEO strategy, you can boost your chances of traffic significantly, and make sure that you're attracting the customers that are best suited to your targeting campaign.
6. Not Securing your Site
For the most part, today's consumers feel more comfortable with buying products on the internet than they once did. However, that doesn't mean that your clients don't want to feel as secure as possible when they're entering personal details into your website. Too many eCommerce sites fall short on their security measures, which means that their customers end up leaving their cart at the last minute without buying anything. Something as simple as an SSL certificate can be it all it takes to make people feel safer.
7. Using Poor Images or Stock Photography
In the real world, when a customer comes to a store in search of a product, they can pick the item up and get a tactile experience of what they're buying. Online, your clients only have the pictures that you put on your website to give them an insight into what they're going to get. With that in mind, you can't get away with substandard photography and stock images. Make sure that you give your users multiple shots of the product you're selling from different angles, so that they feel confident in the quality of the item they buy.
8. Using Sub-Standard Descriptions
Along with product pictures, descriptions are also a valuable part of your eCommerce sales strategy. Make sure that the blurbs you put next to your images include plenty of useful information about the benefits and values of your products. You can also enter keywords into your descriptions to help your SEO campaign and give you a better chance of ranking with the right customers.