4Tips for New eCommerce Retailers
Opening and owning an eCommerce business can sound like a dream to some. Gone are the days of working for a company thatyou do not care about or going into an office you dread.
An eCommerce business owned by you gives you both flexibility and responsibility. Owning an eCommerce store will not be all roses and daisies though. There willbe many obstacles and hardships you will face along the way, just as any other business owner would.
If you are a new eCommerce business owner we are here to help you! It can be difficult navigating the murky waters of business ownership, but with a few tips and tricks, you can be on your way to success in no time. Here are four ways new eCommerce businesses can find prosperity.
To be a successful business owner there are a few key things you will need to do. First, you need to dedicate all of your time to the business. Unlike a day job, your business is your life. You cannot dedicate a mere 40-hours-a-week to the business and expect to make any progress. The average business owner actually works over 60-hours-a-week. So, if that sounds unruly to you, business ownership may not be the best route.
Dedicating your time to the business is just one element of being an effective business owner. As a new owner, you need to be willing to financially invest in the business if you want to build some early momentum.
Obviously, the amount of capital you need to get your business up and running will be dependent on the type of business you intend to lead. For this example, let’s say you are going into business alone at first. In 2021, solo business owners estimated that they spent around $20,000 to get their business started.
Odds are, you do not have over $20,000 laying around in your savings account. Even if you did, investing all of your own money and leaving none in your savings can lead to disaster down the road. This is why almost a quarter of business owners use personal loans to help start a business. Personal loans will provide you with the capital to remain flexible and financially healthy within your business. Many of your major expenses will all come in your first year of operation, so tapping into this resource now can help you in the long run.
2.Build Your Brand
As an online entity, it can feel like your brand does not connect with any specific group of consumers. Physical brands benefit from immediately having a local presence where they can build local brand loyalty. On top of that, physical storefronts can feature branding all-around to build brand awareness. Without a traditional storefront, it can feel impossible to build your brand.
The fact is, online entrepreneurs can actually reach more consumers than a physical store, but you will need to do more work to win these consumers over. To build up your online presence, you need to do a few things:
● Create Consistent Brand Imagery
Online consumers tend to judge a book by its cover more than in-person consumers. While you do not need to create the next iconic branding imagery, having a sleek logo, eye-catching colors, and consistent use of this imagery across all your sites pages will be important. Consistency and quality are key to building brand awareness. Depending on your budget, you can go to a branding agency to help create branding for your new company, or you could outsource this project to a freelancer. Going with an agency will be more costly, but the work will likely be of better quality. Freelancers are great for your wallet, but you will need to do your research before settling on one to ensure you get a logo you are happy with.
● Get Creative
Even though you do not have a physical storefront, you can still get creative with your online branding efforts. Some creative online branding ideas for you to try are: using themed sales days (like wacky Wednesday), implementing video and other creative advertising content, and using online brand influencers. Brand ambassadors have become extremely popular in the online marketing space. If you have repeat customers that are really enthusiastic about your brand, you could send them some branded merch in exchange for an organic ad somewhere on their social media platform.
● Find a Voice
Your online brand needs to find a unique voice that conveys the feelings customers have when interacting with your brand. Determining your brand voice can be difficult, but with some primary research, you should be able to effectively target a voice for your brand. Conducting demographic and psychographic research should help you identify the type of consumers you want to target and what language you should use to attract them.
3.Use Multi Channel Listings
As an online brand, you can benefit from listing your products and having storefronts across a variety of channels. Listing your products in more places should result in more sales, but there is not always an easy way to do this. Luckily, we have the tools to help out!
Before, if you had your products listed on Amazon and wanted to bring them over to your eBay or Shopify storefront, then you would have to manually go through and recreate every product and description. This could be extremely time-consuming, especially for a small team or solo owner. On top of being time-consuming, this setup can lead to inventory inaccuracies as you will need to update the quantity on each site every time an item sells.
Using the JoeLister app, you can easily migrate your Amazon listings to both Shopify and eBay in a few simple steps. The best part of our platform is that inventory quantities sync across each platform which will save you from ever double-selling or needing to refund a sold-out item. On top of syncing inventories, the JoeLister platform allows you to sync sale prices, meaning when you change the sale on one platform you can push that change to the others, saving you time.
Hitting online consumers in as many places as you can will be essential to your eShop’s success.
4. Secure the Site
Cybercrime and site security are major concerns of almost every eCommerce business. As a small online business, you need to be extremely careful when doing anything on the web. On top of that, you will need to put fire walls in place to protect your site and your customers from outside threats.
Hackers have been more sophisticated in recent years, and over the course of the pandemic, they have started to increasingly target small businesses. Last year, almost 50% of small business owners said that they were targeted by cybercrime of some sort. Seeing that your business needs to be online to make money, it is going to be crucial that you shore up your defenses and fend off any cyber attacks.
To effectively protect your business from cybercriminals, we recommend that you:
● Use HTTPS
When shopping online, you likely look to the upper left corner of the site’s URL to make sure there is the little green lock button(grey on Macs). This means the site is secure and encrypted, keeping visitor ssafe. If you aren’t using SSL/TLS protocols to encrypt your site, hackers are more likely to target you. Also, in 2018 Google rolled out an update that will alert visitors of a site that is not secure and that their information is at risk, which will likely result in them shopping elsewhere.
● Install a Firewall
For lower-level hackers, a firewall will be enough to thwart their attempts. A firewall will protect your business from internal threats that could arise through user error. Issues like email malware, spyware, and trojan viruses can all easily be downloaded due to user error, but if you have a business-class firewall in place, these attacks will be stopped in their tracks.
● Use Cybersecurity Best Practices
As already mentioned, human error results in a majority of cybercrime. Doing something as mundane as downloading a file you are not supposed to, or clicking on a phishy email can be all it takes to open your site up to attacks. When you are doing your day-to-day tasks, try to remember that if something looks off, it probably is. Only click on sites you know and trust. Change your passwords often and never use the same password across multiple sites. Lastly, never use your work logins and equipment for personal use and vice-versa.
If you do these few things your business will be well on its way to having fortified defenses.
Opening an online store will be one of the most challenging but exciting times of your life. You have the freedom to do whatever you want with your business. As a new owner, these four tips should help you find early success which will be crucial for the future of your business.