Internet gives an opportunity of transforming a locally focused business into a business that offers products or service on a global stage. E-commerce has become the new reality and the best way for consumer companies to enter new markets and increase sales.
When you chat with many emerging consumer products business owners, they express their need to own an e-commerce site that will give them more flexibility for their operations rather than having that corner street store that is only accessible to those who can make it there.
As someone who’s had those types of conversations almost daily, for the last four or so years, I gathered a few points to consider before embarking on an e-commerce journey.
Having a website comes with many advantages and it surely increases your visibility along with your credibility; those two factors are very important to succeed in business.
My advice is to do it right from the beginning. Having a secure and user-friendly site will cost you between $5K and $60K just to get you started. Kuddos to you if you have necessary skills to build an e-commerce site by yourself. The cost is not minor especially for small businesses that want to get the feel of the market before investing heavily.
After you have your website up and running, you’ve created a presence online. But after having a presence, you need shopping traffic. Until you have created a regular and growing shopping traffic to your site, it will be hard for your business to be profitable.
To attract shopping traffic, you need to create online and offline marketing campaigns. The cost will vary depending on your target audience and the channels you decide to use. Be prepared to spend some money since this step is inevitable.
Nowadays e-commerce websites can be easily made. E-commerce ecosystem is now full of applications and platforms that aim to make your business simple, efficient and profitable.
However, if you are looking for excellent return on investment (ROI) you need to seriously consider hiring in-house technical resources or properly outsource tasks. That person with technical skills will make sure that your e-commerce site is continuously updated while handling any technical issue in a timely manner. If this part is mishandled, your business is out.
Building a brand and a reputable business takes a lot of energy and time. It gets harder when resources are spent on unnecessary matters when growing your business. Whether you are an emerging entrepreneur or an established business, a presence online is a must.
As you get in the business environment, you realize the importance of building a successful brand. If you are venturing into consumer products industry, start by having your boutique on relevant online marketplaces in order to create buzz before investing in your own.
Online marketplaces are those e-commerce sites that give you access to more shopping traffic while allowing you to explore the market before breaking the bank.
Keep in mind that not all online marketplaces are suitable for your products. In my next blog, I will share what I know about online marketplaces that will guide your decision on what you should consider before joining one.
Now that you’ve got some useful hints, are you ready to take your business online?