They say that if you have a laptop, a good idea, and internet access that you can start your own business in no time flat! That may very well be true to a certain extent but it’s not that simple… there are certain steps and strategies to start an e-commerce business; to clarify, there are certain steps and strategies to take if you want a successful e-commerce business. However, there are some common mistakes you will want to avoid when starting up your business.
To start an online business and be your own boss, you need to base your business on fulfilling a certain need, essentially, but that’s not the sole factor that goes into starting an e-commerce store. There are several factors to consider. But, with each one of those factors, you can also expect an obstacle that comes with it.
Not being able to see these common mistakes beforehand is the reason why a lot of online businesses fail before the business has a fair shot of getting started. Take a look at some of the most common mistakes to avoid when starting your own e-commerce store.
Common Mistakes to Avoid When Starting Your E-Commerce Store
Being on the outside looking in, some of the obstacles entrepreneurs endure seem like obvious mistakes to avoid. However, as the entrepreneur, you don’t always see those mistakes as quickly as you should. Here are some common mistakes that get made when starting your e-commerce store.
Common Mistake #1: Selling On the Wrong E-Commerce Platform
One of the most common mistakes entrepreneurs make is selling their products or services on the wrong e-commerce platform. “Setting up shop” on the wrong e-commerce platform can truly make or break your business so you want to choose wisely. There are several platforms to choose from, of course, but a trusted domain name registration company is shopify.com.
Choosing the right e-commerce platform is so important to the success of your business. It not only allows you to pick and choose how you want to showcase the products you’re selling, but it’s also a contributing factor in how you attract potential customers too.
The Wrong E-Commerce Platform Can Be Very Costly If You Don’t Avoid These Mistakes
You may not realize it but choosing the wrong e-commerce platform can cost you in several ways. Some of the ways it can cause financial damage to your business include:
- Loss of revenue
- Reduced traffic
- Lower conversion
- Limited business growth
Making this mistake could mean investing more unnecessary time and money as well as needing to find a new platform altogether. So, make sure you do the proper research in searching for the right platform. But remember, a sure-fire trusted site to turn to is shopify.com.
Common Mistake #2: Not Defining Their Target Audience or Having a Clear-Cut Understanding of Their Needs
So you have the essentials to start your e-commerce business, right? You have your website, a full-proof business plan, and you have the products to sell…now you just need customers. Yes, you need customers, to a certain extent. Having products to sell and a place to sell them isn’t all that goes into it, nor is having customers to sell them to.
Another one of the most common mistakes entrepreneurs make is not defining who their target audience is. If you do not have a clear understanding of your target audience and their needs, how can you serve them? To find out this information, you’ll have to conduct market research.
In order to do that, you will need to figure out:
- does your target audience have a real need for the product you’re selling?
- will your site be accessible in different languages?
- what type of marketing strategy can you develop to put your customers first?
Accommodating your customers in those areas will definitely give them a great shopping experience on your site. If customers have positive shopping experiences on your site, it will make them want to continue shopping on your site. Not understanding your target audience and their needs will make your website look unorganized and irrelevant to their needs…that’s why it’s also important to identify your ideal customer.
Avoid Common Mistakes By Identifying Your Ideal Customer
When creating your website, you want to keep who your ideal customer would be in mind. To find out who this person is, you will also need to do additional market research.
When conducting your market research, keep these factors in mind:
- What’s important to them and what they value most
- How your products can solve their problems
- What’s their anger triggers (slow loading page, poor quality of product pictures, etc.)
Those are just a few considerations to keep in mind when trying to identify your ideal customer and how your product can meet their needs.
Common Mistake #3: Terrible Customer Service
One of the quickest ways to drive customers away is to provide terrible customer service. This another one of the most common mistakes that up-and-coming e-commerce stores make. You’re probably wondering how can you provide excellent customer service when you can’t see the customers face-to-face… Well, there are actually several ways to do that, actually. Just because you can’t see your customers in person doesn’t mean that they don’t deserve the same level of quality customer service as a customer would in person.
Providing The Best Customer Service Online To Avoid Common Mistakes
Providing a high level of customer service comes in many different ways, especially with online shopping. There are many different things to consider when providing customer service online which include:
- how you respond to customers on your website
- how you handle questions and comments on social media platforms
- the time it takes you to respond to these questions and comments
- how you handle customer complaints, whether it be over the phone or through email
Essentially, any type of interaction you have with a customer will determine the level of customer service you provide; depending on how and when you respond to the customer needs and if you’re accommodating (offering refunds), can make the difference in a customer feeling like you provided excellent customer service or poor customer service.
Forbes.com goes even further to say that providing excellent customer service not only keeps customers coming back but if it’s done right, it can tremendously boost a company’s bottom line! Any interaction with customers needs to be a positive one… not doing so is the quickest way to lose loyal customers and keep new ones from visiting your site.
Avoid These Mistakes – Start Your Business Off Right
Starting an eCommerce store can be tough. However, the benefit of reaching success and being your own boss can outweigh all the risks that it takes to get started. The difference between a successful eCommerce store and an unsuccessful one, are these common mistakes that people make when starting up. If you can avoid these mistakes, you can be well on your way to the top!
Are you ready to get your eCommerce business started off the right way?
AUTHOR LaTia Longuemire
My name is LaTia Longuemire. I enjoy writing, singing, and cooking in my spare time. My passion is helping others. At this stage in my lifetime, I'm primarily focused on my children. They are everything that keeps my world spinning.