Succeeding in eCommerce
Some of the essential elements for succeeding in e-commerce are the same as are required for succeeding in any business. I am not, you will be pleased to hear, going to lecture you on the already well covered areas of managing staff, having a viable financial plan or any other such basics that you are most likely, already familiar with.
Neither is this chapter going to be anything to do with which buttons to press in Volusion, indeed this entire book has surprisingly little button pressing, considering the title implies it is about e-commerce software.
But that is just the point. If you want to know how to add a new widget to your widget store and set its price then there are plenty of sources of information that will quickly tell you how to do that.
As you are reading this I assume you are looking to build a professional e-commerce store that has turnover and profit to rival, if not exceed the equivalent bricks and mortar store.
I believe you can nail down the essentials of a successful e-commerce business in four sentences. Here are the things your customers need and want that make up my e-commerce paragraph of prosperity
„Your customers want to buy from someone they like and trust.“
- Nick Choudry -
Help to find a product they want.
A product they want. That's a bit obvious? Well in a way it is. I am guessing that you already have a product range to sell, if not you will have to wait for my blog post on the subject.
Of course having a great product range is essential but what I am talking about here is much more subtle. Read the title again. Help to find. Some newcomers to e-commerce think they can stick a website up and wait for people to buy their wares. The title 'Help to find' is relevant in several ways.
How do customers even find your site? They need help to find it. How do customers know which product is the right one for them? They need help to decide. Even when a potential customer knows a product is the 'right' one for them they only buy it when they 'feel' they actually want it. The first thing you need to do to help your customers find and decide what product is right for them is having a logical store layout with informative product descriptions.
So if your site makes sense to potential customers but how do they even find you? There are so many wrong ways to try and get your new business found. See my SEO Blog for the right ways and along with that, your choices of how to implement the right ways yourself or with hired help if that is more appropriate for you.
So if you have a useful site that is being found by the people you targeted they MUST WANT to buy your product, job done! Not quite, there is it more to it then that. You have to engage with them at an emotional level, not just a common sense/value for money level. How to write and present your products to make people want, I mean really want your products is not covered in any e-commerce guide that I have read and is considered something of a dark art by some. The truth is it is really quite simple when it is explained properly.
More on this in my next few blog postings!