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There hasn’t been a lot that hasn’t changed the past year – everything we once knew was thrown out the window to make room for this new way of life, and it’s as if everyone has changed. Thousands of parents lost their jobs or lost their long-running businesses for how many years, and it’s forced a lot of people to think outside the box about what they can do and what skills they have in their arsenal. This isn’t necessarily bad because parents have come to realize their full potential by being forced out of their comfort zones. Also, restrictions and government-imposed lockdowns may have affected many industries but have caused a significant spike in one specific area – eCommerce.
There has never been a better time for parents to open an online store, and millions of savvy business tycoons have invested in getting in on the massive wave of sales the eCommerce industry has seen. That said, if you’re looking at creating your own online store, here are some steps to create the perfect eCommerce business and get yourself in an even better position financially than before the Coronavirus pandemic!
#1 The Plan
Okay, so you have an idea, now what’s the plan? First, you’ll need to map out everything your business will be, what you’re looking to sell, the funds you’ll need for the startup costs, as well as your goals and objectives. Then, what you’ll actually be doing is creating a business plan, which will be of utmost importance if you’re planning on approaching a potential investor. The business plan should include everything, even the nitty-gritty stuff you think isn’t essential, as well as the estimated projections for the business. You can also take your business plan to the bank if you would rather not have another individual involved in your business and apply for a business loan.
#2 The Website
This is the most critical part of your eCommerce business and should be given a lot of attention. When creating the website, you can visit sites such as Shopify to help you build one from scratch. It’s a bit complicated, but if you spend enough time there, you’ll be able to figure it out and make an online store exactly how you want it. When creating your website, be sure to follow through with your overall theme on all the pages, as well as include all the business’s information and location. Alternatively, you can contract a software developer to build your website for you – this option is a bit more expensive, but you definitely get what you pay for. Software developers are experts at creating websites and can give you precisely what you want and how you envisioned it would look – they can also include any features you may wish to have on the website and optimize it so it will be quick in its responsiveness. Another benefit of having a software developer build the website for you is that they will also maintain it over time and see to it that it doesn’t glitch or crash.
Another vital thing to remember is that your page should be easy to navigate and user-friendly on every device, whether it be a tablet, smartphone or computer. Customers don’t like having to follow steps for twenty minutes just to place an order but will instead go somewhere else. Also, your website will be used when you run your marketing campaigns as well, so make it punchy! Finally, have all the information crystal clear on the landing page, such as sales, promotions, and coupons – you can use the best card sorting tool to organize everything! After all, you want customers to be hooked from the moment they land on your website, so be sure to leave an impression!
#3 The shipping
Because you’re running an eCommerce business, the shipping will significantly impact whether customers will choose to transact with you. Have you ever ordered something online, only to discover at checkout that the shipping is almost more expensive than the product you ordered? Exactly – customers hate spending a lot of money on shipping because they feel they already did their part by paying for the product. You can consider getting a few quotes from a couple of international courier companies before making your final decision. Also, what you can consider is bumping the price of your products up a tiny notch and then offering free shipping – customers love anything free. They will feel much more assured knowing there won’t be any hidden costs when making a purchase on your website.
#4 The marketing
The marketing of your online store is what will determine how fast your business grows in the beginning. Remember, you only just started, so people may not know about you and what your business has to offer yet, so you need to get the word out there! Suppose you’re creating an online store for clothes, for example. In that case, running sponsored ads (paid social media marketing) on various platforms such as Facebook and Instagram could really give you a boost in the right direction. You can also run a few google ads, ensuring you pop upright on top of the search results page when customers search relevant keywords.
#5 The Management
When your eCommerce business is up and running, you’ll need to maintain it and make intelligent business decisions based on the facts. To gather all these facts, you’ll be using data analysis to gather information and stats on your business from various platforms, such as your website. The data analysis will give you a much clearer indication of where your sales are heading, how your marketing campaigns are doing, how much traffic your website received, etc. Without this information, you won’t be able to make smart, educated decisions for your business – there are also data warehouses you can utilize to store all the information gathered.
By using the above guidelines, you’ll be on your way to being a successful ParentPreneur and having an online store that is booming in no time! All that’s left to do now is get cracking; you can do it!