Starting an online business is so easy these days that one only need a little time, a product to sell and a reliable ecommerce hosting company. Making a profit in your new venture, however, is another matter. With so many startups out there, how do you stand out from the crowd? You can greatly increase your chances of success by following a few simple guidelines.
1. Use high quality images
You’ve spent a lot of time developing a product you’re proud of so be sure to show it off. Use high quality, visually appealing images to display your goods.
2. Navigation should be a cinch
It should be dead-simple for your potential customers to view your products, contact you directly, checkout, and add items to their shopping cart. Your navigation should be minimal and straightforward. Navigation that is confusingly complicated will cost you business!
3. Make a search bar available
If you only have one product for sale, you can skip this step. If you’re like most though, you’re selling many products and services, and no customer is going to weed through your entire website to find the one thing they’re looking for. Install a search bar to make it easier for your customers to find what they need.
4. Checkout must be easy
Imagine shopping in a brick and mortar store and needing to walk down multiple corridors and stand in several lines just to pay for what’s in your shopping cart. You wouldn’t do it, right? Neither will your clients. Amazon is known for their 1-click ordering for good reason: it works.
5. Advertise your shipping prices
For shoppers, there’s little else more frustrating than getting to a checkout page on an ecommerce website, only to realize that it will cost $75 to have the goods shipped. Prominently display a link to shipping options and prices on every page of your website and you’ll save your customers some time and yourself some complaints.
6. Practice good customer service
Just because you’re working from behind a keyboard and will never meet your clients face-to-face does not mean you have a good excuse to be rude. Taking a bad attitude with your paying customers pretty much guarantees that you’ll drive business to the competition.
7. Be browser friendly
Not every visitor to your website is using Internet Explorer or Google Chrome. Making sure your website displays properly across all browsers and operating systems. Services like Browserling are free of charge, and will test your website using multiple browsers so you can be assured that your ecommerce website looks just as good to others as it does to you.
Lastly, hand your URL out to family, friends and acquaintances and let them give it the once-over before you go live or implement major changes. Fresh eyes can easily pick out spelling and grammar errors, as well as website deficiencies.