E-commerce is an extremely diverse medium for both buyers and sellers of all types of products. Thanks to e-commerce websites, it has become extremely convenient to buy items, shop, and compare prices without leaving the comfort of your home. E-commerce has also shortened the distance between competitors, pushing margins lower and bringing better deals to buyers.
E-commerce can also benefit small startups and individuals who just want to sell casually as well. Thanks to online resources available today, it has never been easier to set up a website to post items and make sales. There are still, however, a number of basic practices that can drastically increase the success of a new online store or business. Here two helpful concepts that many startups fail to follow:
- Pick a type of product/Stick to a niche
Selling on the Internet, just like selling products in the real world, benefits greatly from organization. Picking a type of product to sell when you begin and sticking to that niche helps ensure that your business remains focused and clear to customers.
Many first time sellers make the mistake of thinking that more is better, and do the opposite by putting a variety of items on their site. While this may seem practical when selling on the Internet, and is an effective option for larger businesses, this will confuse customers who visit a small site. Your site needs to make it clear what you offer.
- Keep your platform simple, reliable, and easy to understand
Like with technological platform, there are a huge variety of features you can build into an online store. Many sellers, especially individuals who are building their own site, enjoy experimenting with complicated features. While a feature that adds functionality to your business is definitely worth considering, it’s important to remember that more is not always better. Sometimes, a store created with an online store creator can ultimately prove a better choice than creating a customized site, simply because a system built off a template is more robust (if also more basic).
When your store is new, your customers will be evaluating it to decide whether they want to come back or not. While a fancy or helpful feature may win you a few points with such a customer, it’s more likely to cause problems that will lose you business. When first establishing a business, it’s most important to establish credibility through reliability, even if this means including only the most simple features.