6 quick tips to remember when starting out in e-commerce

Decided to venture into e-commerce? With online shopping becoming more popular than ever in recent times, it’s no surprise so many are trying their hand at it themselves. It’s now easier than ever to establish your very own online store – and these six tips will help you along the way.

Web design is extremely important
Perhaps surprisingly, the most effective way of getting customers to stick around and eventually purchase something upon your online store is by greeting them with a pleasing, effective design. Be sure to let your products take centre stage, instead of a distracting, garish appearance that could immediately make them turn away.

Flat design remains the most popular choice in web design to this day, a long-running style that still manages to look as fresh and appealing as ever. Be sure you’re not distracting from your products with a website which is hard-to-navigate, or even simply unpleasant to look at.

Consider your server choice with the future in mind
When it comes to determining which hosting provider to choose in setting up your online store, you need to consider your future desires. If you’re wanting to remain relatively small and modest in terms of your store’s growth, a shared server is the perfect choice – it’s cheaper and will offer more than enough hosting space for you.

However, if you have bigger aspirations, invest in a dedicated server. Albeit more expensive, you won’t be running the risk of overloading the server, which could result in downtime.

Alternatively, you could opt for one of the newer services upon which web hosting is included. Shopify is one such example – it’s an all-inclusive platform that’ll pretty much take care of everything for you.

Customer service is crucial
Should you want to establish those crucial relationships with your buyers, whether it be their first or their fiftieth time doing business with you, customer service is absolutely vital. You need to prove yourself to be a trustworthy, genuine business – customer service is the most effective way to do it.

Make sure you regularly communicate with customers, responding to any queries, comments or complaints they may have. Phone calls are often the most effective way of doing so, but with e-commerce, emails are the more common ¬– and feasible – choice.

“Niche marketing” is your friend
Don’t confuse niche marketing with a niche market. Whereas the latter will prevent you from reaching larger target markets due to less of a demand, niche marketing will have the opposite effect – you’ll be proving yourself to be an innovative and worthy competitor by offering something new in the midst of a market oversaturated with similar products.

Niche marketing works in your favour in that you’ll be attracting new customers who are interested in a product they’ve not seen before. Consider what’s been done time and time again, and figure out how to build and improve upon it.

Secure your site to be trustworthy
Be sure to have a good level of protection upon your site in order to reassure your customers you’re a trustworthy and reliable business to invest in. Attacks are unfortunately common in e-commerce, and in the interest of the buyers who are likely entering confidential information upon the store, you’ll want to ensure you’re not at any risk of a security breach.

Attacks like SQL injection are often the choice for hackers and attackers, so make sure you’re taking those vital steps to prevent it.

Always look to the future
With e-commerce, things move quickly – so much so, in fact, that it’s very easy to lag behind the competitors. Make sure you’re always looking to the future, noticing changing trends and new developments in order to stay ahead of the game and consistently prove yourself to be the most exciting and innovative business in the market.

Do you have any more tips for those starting out in e-commerce? Be sure to let us know in the comments below.

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