The share of online retail in the developed countries of the world is 10-15% and this market continues to develop rapidly. The buying process has changed a lot due to mobile devices. Nowadays you can buy almost everything online: from normal ballpoint pens to cars. There are online supermarkets that sell groceries, online stores that sell clothes and shoes, personal computers, home appliances, cosmetics, household and garden products, and handicrafts.
Online shops are quite economical to manage and maintain. The owner of such a website does not have to have a physical store, pay rent, and pay labor costs for a large number of employees. With this function you can open an online shop with just a few clicks. It is enough to register a domain, choose good hosting and a practical content management system. But why are some online projects growing and developing while others are not profitable at all? What does a successful online shop? Let’s try to find answers to these questions.
Online Commerce – Ingredients for Success
There is a stereotype that it is easy to make sales online as online gives you access to millions of potential buyers. But without work and a systematic approach, nothing will come of it. Online business is primarily a low overhead and a small barrier to entry. However, creating a successful online store is not easy. You need to gain the trust of your customers. Consequently, the main goal to be achieved when creating an online store is convenience. Every page on your ecommerce website should be thought out to the smallest detail and as easy to use as possible.
The homepage is the main page of the online store, the shield, the face of your business. There shouldn’t be a lot of information about it. Everything should be easy to read and understand clearly. A good homepage should give you an impression of the online shop. In the first few seconds that you spend on your website, the visitor should understand what products or services you are selling. On the home page you can also place links to the main sections of the catalog or the overview of important products or product categories. In addition, banners with information on discounts, special offers or current promotions can be placed here. The homepage often also contains contacts, a feedback form or a live chat.
Category pages of an online shop correspond to the departments of a physical shop, in which goods are arranged in a certain order on the shelves. You have to make it as easy and convenient as possible to find the right product. For this purpose, you can use infinite scrolling, quick product views, sorting by price, number of reviews, bestsellers, etc.
Category pages can contain product photos and brief descriptions, reviews, new items, and other useful information. Anything to help the buyer find the products they need, maybe compare them and add them to the cart to make a purchase.
For both an online hypermarket and a small online shop, the product page is a very important page. It should contain information that not only interests the buyer, but also persuades them to buy. Therefore, any information that you want to convey to the buyer about a product or service needs to be carefully thought out, well structured and organized in a convenient form.
Images must be of high quality and scalable. There should be a lot of them. Product images on the website of an online store should compensate the buyer for the inability to touch this product, try on clothes, for example, study the material. The description of each product must be unambiguous and contain technical characteristics, if necessary. It’s great when you have the option to add a video review of a product. The product page must also contain the current price. On this page you can place the buttons “Add to cart”, “Buy” and “Add to wish list”.
A little more marketing
There are many ways to significantly increase your online sales. Either way, you need to consider different methods of promoting a product or service, compare their effectiveness, and choose the best one for your ecommerce project. To do this, you need to develop a marketing plan.
When launching new products or promotions, you can use countdown landing pages. You can also provide coupon codes and discounts for Christmas or birthday to registered users of your website for various reasons. Gamifying the website can lead to a good result. People love to have fun and earn points by playing a game on the site or answering questions.
Don’t forget to set up the Google Analytics code too. This is a great way to keep track of ecommerce and measure your performance. Google Analytics reports cover pretty much anything you might need. Regularly compare your online store with competitors and try to do more to provide additional service to customers.
Is it worth the effort?
Now that you know a little more about how to create a successful online store. It’s a tricky job. To maximize customer satisfaction, Amazon is launching delivery drones, seller-free stores, and mobile assistants. IKEA develops applications with which furniture from a shop can be “tried on” virtually to see if it fits into the interior. Give the best to your customer and your hard work will be rewarded!
About the author: Sandra Parker works as a business developer in TestFort and helps companies accelerate their business through custom software development and testing. She loves programming and managing projects.