2020 was the worst year across the world for all the businesses except eCommerce, the only business which prospered in 2020 was eCommerce websites and Apps. Looking at the current scenario people have created a habit of buying things online by sitting at ease at home and this habit is going to remain permanent.
I am assuming that you already know what is eCommerce and have landed on this page as you have made the decision to join the world of eCommerce by selling something online. It could be your existing products or you may be buying from multiple sources and selling online(What most people do).
Here I will try to explain what are essentials you should work on to start an eCommerce website and what best technological platform will be useful for that.
Let’s see some statistics here so you can make the right decision on if it is wise for you to jump into eCommerce or not.
eCommerce Statistics to consider while building a website in 2021
- 61% of eCommerce purchases in the world have been based on recommendations from a blog and influencers. (Source: Content Marketing Institute)
- First online shopping purchase of almost 59% of Millennials is through Amazon, that makes Amazon one of the biggest eCommerce store in the world. (Source: Inviqa)
- Statistics says it is the best time to start an eCommerce right now, by the year 2040 almost 95% of all the purchase made in the world will be through eCommerce. (Source: Nasdaq)
- In 2020, Amazon accounted for 47% of all US eCommerce sales, which will touch 50% in the year 2021. (Source: Statista)
- There is a very high amount (55%) of customers who buy things online tell friends and family when they are dissatisfied with their eCommerce service or product they consumed. (Source: UPS)
- Out of the total people using the internet, 93.5% of them have purchased have done eCommerce transactions at least once as of now. (Source: OptinMonster)
- The average growth of the eCommerce industry from the last 10 years is at 23% but still, around 50% of businesses in the USA don’t have eCommerce websites. (Source: BigCommerce)
- The Next Boom in the eCommerce industry is going to come in B2B business and 69% of B2B businesses say they are going to stop printing the marketing material in the next 2-5 years. (Source: B2XPartners)
- Only 2.86% of eCommerce website visits convert into a purchase, so if your site is converting more than this than consider yourself very lucky and give a bonus to your digital marketing team (Source: Invesp)
- A survey has found that No. 1 reason people do online shopping as they can shop anytime in the day without any time restrictions. (Source: KPMG)
Now let’s go through the points which you need to consider before you start building an eCommerce website, these points will help you to list features and functionalities required to build your website.
Here I am assuming that you have done good research on what products you want to sell online as without having good products to sell thinking about eCommerce is waste of time.
Initial research and strategies for your eCommerce store:
- Whom to sell – Your Target Audience
It is imperative to define your target audience as per the products you are trying to sell, If you are trying to sell baby products than mothers are the most suitable target audience than fathers. If you are trying to sell gifting products then emotion plays a major role in gifting and women should be your major target. If you are trying to sell Electronic products then men are making a major decision and if they are white goods then women are the decision-maker.
- How to reach your Target audience?
After the advancement of social media like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat reaching your target audience has become very easy. You can create an advertisement and target the exact age, sex, city, marital status, and interest of your target audience. Not only that in these advertisements you can even set on what time you want to showcase your advertisements. It is been known that if you want to get maximum sell then you need to target your advertisement at night time after 8 pm when people are just passing time on social media and have enough time to make a decision and purchase your product.
- Use your competitors to your advantage
Why reinvent the wheel, before you make your marketing plan you need to thoroughly research your competitors and their marketing activities, you need to research the tone of their text, what kind of blogs they are writing, what kind of content they are publishing on social media, now if you go to the Facebook page of your competitor you can even know all the advertisements they are running currently on Facebook. You can analyze their keywords and source of traffic with tools like SpyFu, QuickSprout, and SimilarWeb, and target the people they’re targeting.
- Where and how you are managing the stock or you planning dropshipping?
It is very important to have an effective plan to manage the stock or have a dropshipping model. You have to ensure your business has sufficient stock in hand to meet customer demand. If you are a newbie in the eCommerce industry and want to save money on warehouse and storage then Dropshipping is best for you as you don’t have to handle the product directly.
- How are you going to manage shipping and returns?
Another big part of knowing how to start an online store is deciding how you’ll be shipping your products, AKA where you’ll be doing business. You have to consider various aspects of shipping like methods & rates, packaging, shipping solutions. According to research, every year 30% of orders get returned. Renowned eCommerce stores offer return options with the required flexibility and precautions.
- What are your marketing strategies and if you are going to have a budget to spend on marketing?
Some of the effective marketing strategies are:
– Email Marketing
– Content Marketing
– Social Media Marketing
– Search Engine Optimization
– Influencer Marketing
– Affiliate MarketingTry and find out which strategy will give you the best impact. Determine your budget, whether it’s based on a fixed income or a percentage of revenue, This way it will be easier for you to allocate resources and measure the results of your campaigns.
- How are your costs and your markups?
When pricing a product for your eCommerce store consider these 4 angles:Your costs: Your costs will be a prime consideration of your pricing to have a sustainable business.
Your competition: know your competitors’ pricing model.
Psychology of your buyer: Understand your customer and learn what they are looking for (budget option: priced cheaper than your competitor)
The market: Once your business met the costs, how much more do you want to have of surplus
There are multiple points you should consider for products:
- How many different SKU’s you will have?