Keep your online store at the top of its game

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Date: 22 June 2021

A small shipping trolly on a laptop representing ecommerce

Creating and maintaining an online store seems like a dream job – especially for those who are technically adept. Listing products on a site and reeling the money in seems like a no-brainer. Whether you indirectly ship other products or hold and deliver stock yourself, the idea of running an ecommerce website is very attractive.

However, if it were that easy, everyone would do it. You can't just sit around and watch the money come rolling in – you must put the work in as you would with any other job.

If you've ever dabbled in ecommerce before, you'll know all about the time and effort it takes to be successful. You'll know that you need to attract customers and keep them coming back for more. It's not just a case of getting people to part with their money – you'll want to build relationships and make people excited about your new products and services.

If you want to create a high-quality store that has a wonderful level of attractiveness and functionality, then here are some tips:

Keep things simple and easy on the eyes

You'd be amazed at how many people try to overcomplicate their website. Whether they're creating an ecommerce store, blogs, or just simple websites that represent a company, they overdo it. A website should make people feel comfortable and welcomed. It's supposed to give people a positive feeling as soon as they arrive. If they feel bombarded or uncomfortable, they will click away or receive a negative first impression. Don't overthink it - create an engaging website design. Consider how it would make you feel if it were someone else's store and you're entering for the first time.

Don't behave like a cheap wheeler-dealer

When you're looking to make as much money as possible from your venture, it can be easy to forget about those on the other side of the deal – especially when it's all done online. If you simply try to get your hands on their money, they will see right through you. Put some effort into building your reputation and delivering a great service as well as a quality product. Don't treat the business as a get-rich-quick.

Link your site to your social platforms

If you have social media profiles that can support your store, you will be able to reach out to lots of different people. Billions of customers are wandering around social media at any time, so there's a whole world of customers out there for you to tempt. Social media is also great for advertising your business – just look at the number of the Facebook ads around and you'll realise how popular social media advertising it.

Aim to rank highly in terms of SEO

Search engine optimisation is crucial for all websites these days. If people type in a keyword or search term and see your website on the first page (preferably at the top), then you'll be seen as relevant, reliable, and popular. If you can hit top spot on Google, then you're doing something right. You'll have people visiting your site all the time.

Target a specific group or audience

If you have a particular product – or set of products – on sale, then the chances are that you'll need to target a particular type of business or customer. You won't be able to lure in absolutely everyone. There will be a type of customer that needs just what you're selling. Focus almost exclusively on them.

Always look to improve

You can't stand still if you want to create a small business that consistently brings in money. If you sit on your laurels, then others will come in and take your spot at the top. You'll also lose the attention of your early adopters and potential new customers. People need to see change, variety, and excitement.

Build an attractive brand, logos and imagery

It's not just a case of making people happy with a few products. Those businesses that stay at the top do so because they're able to create something that resonates with people. They create something that is about more than just the items on sale. Longevity in business is all about building a brand and getting people on board with the journey and the values you hold. If people like the look of you and buy in to what you're doing, you'll be far more successful. Your logos, imagery, and content are all key components of your brand.

Make sure you're synced up wherever you go

The good thing about running an online store is that you don't need to be permanently sat at your desk. You can use apps and tech to stay up to date with sales activity, customer queries and social media activity. There's a plethora of great apps like Shopify that can track things as you go about your day. Make sure you have reliable lines of communication to keep you in the loop wherever you go. Thankfully, with the helpful sites like Half Cooked, you can find the perfect contract for you and your business.

Take care of potential customers 

People who are happy to part with their money in exchange for your goods are not suckers – they are people with lives and stories just like you. Make sure you treat them with respect. Demonstrating genuine care for these people will help ensure your business has the best chance of being successful. Forming positive relationships with those invested in your business makes everything so much easier. You'll be doing yourself a favour by maximising your earning potential, and you'll be doing your customers a favour by keeping them satisfied.

Copyright 2021. This article was made possible by Jeremy Bowler.

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