How to Launch Your eCommerce Business
Electronic commerce, or eCommerce, is a process through which commercial transactions are made electronically on the Internet. With the online shopping industry booming – and global retail eCommerce sales reaching a whopping $5 trillion in 2021 – there’s no better time to invest in an eCommerce business than today.
Digital platforms that offer eCommerce services don’t just include sites like eBay and Amazon but also online course platforms, blog sites, remote service providers, software services, and online banking – basically, any platform that can help you make money online.
Sounds cool, right? And it is! With eCommerce and digital marketing at their zenith, starting a business has never been simpler. And if you’re a budding entrepreneur wondering how to make easy money, let us help you.
In this blog post, we’ll dive into what it takes to start a successful eCommerce business and take you through the steps so that by the time you’re done reading, you’ll be ready to launch your eCommerce business!
Identification of a Product With High Potential
The first thing you need to do is choose a product or service that has high potential in terms of both demand and profit margins. Do some market research to figure out what exactly it is that you feel customers want and then niche down in that category. Remember, market research helps you overcome your own biases when it comes to choosing products and pinpoints you towards what customers want, not what you think they want.
If you’re unsure about what your product should be, there are several resources online that can give you some direction. Amazon Best Sellers, eBay Top Products, and Google Trends are some sources you can use to dig deeper into market trends – but whatever you do, you need to do it fast. The digital world keeps evolving at a phenomenal pace and what was popular yesterday may not be popular today, so having a first-mover advantage in a category that’s trending will help you establish your foundations as a seller and make some quick bucks. And this brand name that you established early on will also help you later as you keep adding products to your eCommerce store.
Looking for a Manufacturer for Your Product
Of course, this step is relevant if you have a physical product to offer, but it can also apply if you have a team working to provide the services your brand offers.
When it comes to planning a business, your idea might be perfect on paper, but it’s the execution of that idea that’s going to make or break you. For that reason, it’s important for you to partner with a manufacturer (or hire a team) that’s able to keep up with your requirements and maintain good communication throughout the process.
Start off by shortlisting a few potential candidates and interviewing them critically. Once you’re done with the interviews, you’ll be able to narrow down the list to at least half the people. Then call them for the second round of interviews to discuss things in more detail. Remember, when it comes to choosing a team or a supply chain, don’t just focus on the cost. You might have a candidate that offers the lowest prices but has poor communication and quality to match, and you might have a candidate that offers slightly higher prices but is able to give you outstanding quality and keeps you in the loop throughout the process. Which one would you prefer?
It’s always better to choose quality over quantity, and long-term relationships over short-term ones.
Choosing a Brand Name and Securing an Online Presence
There’s no question about it that your brand name needs to be unforgettable and should appeal to your clientele. Your target audience should also find this brand name to be harmonious with the product or services you’re offering. After all, you don’t want to be running a courier service called Leisurely Turtle, do you?
Additionally, your brand name should be available in the form of social media handles and domain names. Going for the dot-com version is recommended widely for SEO purposes. And if you are having difficulty coming up with a name for your eCommerce business, then the “business name generator tool” offered by Shopify is a big help. Also, you can check out our Shopify SEO service.
To develop an eCommerce website, it’s essential to first have a layout. The logo should be designed beforehand so that everything that comes after can be finalised within a matter of days. To design an attractive and functional website, there are many platforms available on the Internet that you can use, such as WordPress or WooCommerce. And if you don’t have the time, expertise, or budget, you can use the themes and templates available on Themeforest or a similar platform for designing an eCommerce website. Woocommerce SEO is also very easy and straightforward since it is WordPress.
Deciding on the Fulfilment of Orders and Shipping
The product that you choose to market will determine your options for order processing and fulfilment. In some cases, you may only be receiving orders while your manufacturer or a third party will be fulfilling them. And in other cases, you may be receiving the orders as well as fulfilling them. It all really depends on your business strategy and operational feasibility.
You can also use a software that integrates shipping with fulfilment, and this is very useful when it comes to providing ease for both the provider as well as the customer. A tracking number is generated for the customer as soon as the shipping label is created and the customer can track their product’s route. Improving the customer experience in this manner will ultimately lead to more loyal customers and a flourishing business.
Establishing Revenue Goals
The best piece of advice any business owner can get is this: Don’t jump into the business blindly. Calculate each and every expense against your investment and set clear revenue goals for yourself. If your product has an expiration date, you will want to consider a specific duration of time before which you should have sold your batch of products to save your inventory being of no use to anyone and draining your finances. Also, keep looking for ways to cut your costs and creative ideas to market your product to the target audience. Every penny you save will be utilised in better marketing of the product(s) and investing back into your eCommerce store.
Marketing Plan for the Launch
When it comes to marketing a product, the size and price of the product don’t matter as much as a robust marketing strategy does. This marketing plan should be put into action before the product is launched so that you’re able to create sufficient hype around the launch. The success of an eCommerce business is directly linked to its digital marketing strategy and if you focus on the content marketing strategy for your product, you’ll be able to generate consistent revenue. After all, a content marketing strategy (including e-commerce SEO strategy) is all about attracting and retaining customers who are most likely to buy from you.
Checklist for Product Launch
According to many marketers, the following steps should be taken for the successful launch of a product(s):
- Know your target audience – your customer who wants the said product. How confident are you in your understanding of your audience? Is the product you are marketing going to satisfy the needs and demands of the clientele?
- A positioning statement should be written with your product. This statement will validate the importance and use of the product to satisfy the needs of the customers. The product should have at least one quality that is not present in similar products offered by other eCommerce businesses.
- Pitch this positioning to the stakeholders and then plan your marketing strategy.
- Set a goal for the launch of this product. For a successful launch, promotion is paramount. So, creating promotional content is the next step, after which, the product will be launched.
- See how well the sales go and whether your hard work paid off in achieving your goals or not.
Launching Your eCommerce Store
After following all these steps, it’s time to officially launch your website. Don’t wait for that perfect moment to launch your eCommerce store because the Internet is a constantly changing landscape and the more you wait, the more you lose. Of course, once you’ve launched your product, you should be flexible enough to make adjustments and evolve with the market as needed. Every brand has to make constant changes and bring something new and eye-catching every once in a while to stay in business. Redundancy is not appreciated anywhere and if your digital marketing is poor, your business will fall before it has a chance to rise. Nevertheless, failure is not absolute. You can always learn from your mistakes and try again.
Use of SEO in Launching Your Business
Blogging is one way that you can market your business. But how will you attract a large target audience? The answer lies in the use of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). Search Engine Optimisation gets your website, your blog, and your business to the top of the search engine list by the use of specific keywords. People are sure to click on the first few websites that appear on their screen, and hardly anyone goes to the second page of the search results. This arrangement (or ranking) of websites is mainly due to Search Engine Optimisation which matches the query of the Internet user to the same keywords used on the web page – and this helps you attract more people to your website.
Your marketing plan should also be linked to Search Engine Optimisation techniques. No matter how good your marketing pitch is, it will not matter if it does not show up on the Internet when a customer searches for something related to your product.
Search Engine Optimisation also increases your social media attention and visibility. A good digital marketing plan works alongside Search Engine Optimisation, and they both complement each other and enhance the performance of the eCommerce business. If you want to successfully launch your business and then generate high product sales afterwards, don’t forget to use Search Engine Optimisation in your marketing strategy. Doing this shows customers that you have an active profile on the Internet and your customers will keep coming back to see if anything new has been introduced. These frequent visits from the customers will lead to an increase in your website traffic and your product sales. Of course, keep in mind that your SEO strategy will also need to be updated from time to time as keywords and other SEO techniques evolve over time.
Launching an eCommerce business might seem easy when you see everyone doing it, but maintaining it as a successful business requires a constant input of energy and time. With proper tools and software, managing an eCommerce business should not be as hectic as a brick-and-mortar business. Innovations and creativity will help you thrive in this competitive world and make your business a profound success.
In a nutshell: Content marketing, blog marketing, and the use of SEO are mandatory requirements for eCommerce businesses to first launch and then stay in the game. Using these techniques will help you attract first-time visitors, and after frequent visits, they convert from visitors to leads, and then to loyal customers. Eventually, these customers turn into promoters of your products and help spread the word about your awesomeness.