Are you a feisty entrepreneur who wants to try their hands at starting an eCommerce business? Well, then you already know that there hasn’t been a better time to get things going. While the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on many businesses, the eCommerce industry has witnessed monumental growth. Here is about launching your online store here.
But the growing popularity of eCommerce is also tempting more business owners and retailers to take the plunge. Also, the availability of feature-packed eCommerce platforms simplifies the barriers to entry.
Irrespective of the type of products you sell on your online store, you’re going to face stiff competition. In this blog, we’ve outlined a few crucial things every aspiring eCommerce business owner should know before getting started. Let’s take a look.
1. It’s More Than the Website
Of course, a well-designed, user-friendly, and secure website is a must for every eCommerce business. It’s integral to the identity of your online store. Also, it’s a powerful tool for promoting new products, monitoring customer behavior, and skyrocketing your revenue.
But building a stellar website using an established eCommerce platform, such as Shopify or BigCommerce, isn’t enough. Behind every successful online store, there’s plenty of work that goes on in the background to fulfill orders and deliver an outstanding customer experience.
Depending on your business strategy, it’ll involve extensive coordination with manufacturers, suppliers, and third-party logistics providers. To begin with, you’ll need a warehouse to safely store your products before they’re ready to be shipped.
Also, you’ll need to find a reliable shipping provider to ensure the timely delivery of every order. You need a company that offers more than just transportation. Ideally, your shipping provider should help you with rescues and returns too.
Depending on the type of product you’re delivering, you might even want them to offer white glove services, including room-of-choice delivery, assembly, and dunnage removal. Even better if they offer reverse logistics services too.
If you’re planning to cater to customers across the globe, it’s a good idea to find an established freight forwarding company. It’ll go a long way to save you from the hassle of coordinating with various transportation providers. Also, they’ll help you with getting customs clearance for international orders.
Having a reputed freight forwarder also comes in handy when you have to source raw materials from overseas. Make sure you find a company that offers a wide array of transportation options. You can visit https://www.powerforwarding.com/ for more information on options and prices. Also, get quotes from a few vendors before selecting your freight forwarding service.
2. Data Is Your Biggest Ally
Access to customer behavior data and purchase history is one of the key factors that sets online stores apart from brick-and-mortar establishments. If you want to grow your eCommerce business, you must collect and analyze user data from your website.
It’ll help you derive key insights about how potential and existing customers are interacting with your website. Also, you can use the data to identify usability and navigation issues. It’ll even help you learn more about the demographic of your customer base.
Moreover, when correctly implemented, you can leverage data to identify bestselling products and emerging market trends. It’ll help you personalize product recommendations and increase revenue through strategic upsells and cross-sells.
So, before you launch your eCommerce website into the market, make sure you invest in a robust web analytics tracking tool. Make sure it supports integrations with other sales and marketing automation tools you intend to use.
3. Your Operations Will Have a Significant Environmental Impact
Between transporting raw materials to manufacturing units and shipping finished products to customers, your eCommerce supply chain will result in significant fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions.
Also, the fancy packaging that you use to delight customers will make its way to the landfill, and further increase your online store’s carbon footprint. With modern consumers becoming more aware of the environmental toll of their actions, it’s necessary that you prioritize sustainable and environmentally friendly operations.
When it comes to running an eCommerce business, there are various ways to green your operations. Consider sourcing raw materials and products from local vendors to shorten the length of your supply chain. Similarly, you can use biodegradable or recyclable packaging materials.
You could even offer to pick up discarded packaging from a customer’s doorstep for reuse and recycling purposes. Also, showcase the steps you’re taking to achieve sustainable growth, and make an effort to drive awareness among customers.
Launching an online store isn’t all about creating a website and promoting it on social media platforms. You need a solid order fulfillment strategy to create a seamless customer experience. Also, monitor the needs and preferences of your customers to personalize your offerings.