5 Tips to Running a Successful E-Commerce Business

Going online is a must in today’s digital world. Businesses that are not online and offer their products via e-commerce are missing out on a lot of potential. Even if a business only wants to stay local, potential customers will be looking to a business’ website for products and/or information.

When running an e-commerce site, a few tips can go a long way:

1.    Use the Right Software

The software you use to run your e-commerce site needs to be secure and robust. You need to find a solution that works best for you, and some solutions will rely on a SaaS company to run the e-commerce solution on their own backend.

A few options for e-commerce sites are:

And you can add a lot of others to this list including Volusion and BigCommerce. Paid solutions offer higher levels of security and a little more reassurance in terms of quality.

2.    Treat Your E-Commerce Business Like a Real Business

“Build it and they will come” is just not reality. There are millions of online stores, and if you want to find success, treat your e-commerce store like a business. Focus on the growth of your business, and dedicate time and resources to it.

If you want to succeed, you’ll need to:

  • Market
  • Expand
  • Network

Hobby businesses don’t get big – for most people – because they sit on the backburner. If your e-commerce business is meant to be a real business, treat it like one.

3.    Make Checkout Simple

No one wants to sign up for your site just to become a customer. And all of those extra hoops customers have to jump through when making a purchase is killing your conversion rates. If you want to be a success, you need to make the checkout process as simple as possible.

This can be done by:

  • Removing account creation requirements
  • Saving information wherever possible
  • Using as little forms and fields as possible
  • Include the most common forms of payment
  • Reduce the number of screens before a purchase is made

If people keep abandoning their shopping carts, there is a problem with the checkout process.

4.    Recruit Customers to Promote Your Products

Everyone reads reviews and testimonials when buying products online. And if you allow customers to be your ambassador, you’ll find greater success. Allow your customers to:

  • Share your products
  • Share their purchase
  • Leave testimonials
  • Leave reviews

One of the most powerful tools for luring in new customers is showing potential customers how your product or service has helped others find success.

5.    Research Your Customers

Who is your target audience? Where is your target audience online? You need to know who and where your target audience is before you can promote to them. If you know that your target audience can be found in particular forums or news sites, promotion and reaching these individuals will be a lot easier.

You may find that some of these consumers may be on Groupon, and this may be an option to pursue, too.

Basic research into your target market will dictate your marketing approach and needs to be done even before your e-commerce site goes live.