how to sell online

How to Sell Online – Build Your Business from Zero

With the increase of the e-commerce market and sales year after year, it is clear that e-commerce is the present and the future of how people will do business and shopping. Now it is so easy to have your online store created and built within 5 minutes that everyone is joining this sector and starting to sell online. No matter if you already have a physical store or if you are just a business newbie, having an online store is considered a must because of the numerous benefits that it has to offer:

  • You don’t have to pay rent.
  • Your online store will be available to make sales 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • You can add as many products as you want to your store.
  • You can reach far more customers compared to a physical store.
  • Online marketing actions you make have much higher impact.

These are some of the main reasons why you should create and build your e-commerce store.

If you’ve already decided to open your online store but don’t know how to go about it, this is definitely the post for you. 

How to create an online store: Shopify, Prestashop, or Woocommerce

A CMS, Content Management System, will allow you to easily create an online store with almost no coding skills. These CMS platforms are what make creating an online store so easy and accessible for everyone. There a lot of different CMS platforms but in this post we are going to talk about three of them, Shopify, Prestashop and Woocommerce:

  • Reasons to choose Shopify as your platform
    • The creation of the shop is instant, takes as little as 5 minutes.
    • There are 3 types of paid plans you can choose from.
    • It is a cloud solution, which means that you don’t have to worry about getting a hosting for your store.
    • It has a drag and drop feature that allows you to easily customize your online store and give it the touch that you want.
  • Reasons to choose Prestashop as your platform:
    • There are more personalization options since it can be done through coding.
    • You don’t have to pay because it is an open source platform, but you have to find a hosting in order to make your store available online.
    • Prestashop is known to be SEO friendly as it offers so many customization options in terms of SEO.
  • Reasons to choose Woocommerce as your platform:
    • There are a lot of themes you can choose from to customize your store.
    • Same as Prestashop, there are no paid plans but you will need to find yourself a hosting service to make your store available online.
    • Huge active community of users.

Get traffic to your store

Once you have decided which CMS to use, created, customized and uploaded products to your store – it’s time to start bringing traffic to your website so that you can start driving sales. You must know that there are many different kinds of traffic to attract customers:

  • Paid Traffic: as its name says, it refers to the traffic that we bring by using paid platforms such as Google Ads, Facebooks Ads, Instagram Ads, etc. It is definitely a great way to bring initial traffic to your website.
  • Organic Traffic: it is the traffic that comes when someone searches for our website on Google, Bing… This is the kind of traffic that we will be getting if we work on our SEO strategy. This is a really important traffic that we should be working on because it is mainly free! That means that if we improve our store the right way, we will be getting free traffic and customers.
  • Referral Traffic: this is  the traffic that we get from other websites. For example: maybe someone talked about us and put a link to our store on his or her blog. All the people that come to our website through that link will be considered referral traffic.
  • Social Traffic: traffic that comes from social media. For example: We made a giveaway on our social media and we put a link to our online store.
  • Direct traffic: It is the traffic that you get when people directly type your URL on their browser.

Improve your store’s conversion

So by now, we have our online store and we are bringing traffic to it. Now it is time to optimize our store so that we can sell more with almost the same traffic. This is what we call improving the conversion rate of your store. There are many ways to do it, but here are some of our recommendations:

  • Build your store well, avoid using aggressive colors such as dark red or dark orange. Also avoid using colors that have no synergy between them. It is really important to build your store well because you have to gain the trust of your potential customers.
  • Always use high quality pictures, never use blurry ones because people won’t be able to see the product they want to buy and will also make your shop look like a scam or phishing page.
  • Try to offer a lot of different payment methods, the more you offer the better for the customer!
  • Make contact information visible to customers, make them feel that they can contact you at any time.
  • Make sure that your store is responsive on different devices. There’s a huge increase in people that use their phone and tablets to surf the web and make purchases. So a good optimization is making sure that you don’t lose mobile and tablet customers.
  • If your customers have to sign in if they want to make a purchase, make sure that the process is smooth and painless as possible. Offer them to log in using their Google or Facebook account.

Improve your store’s retention and gain customer loyalty.

The final step is working on your store’s retention strategy and trying to make loyal customers. It is known that it’s way more difficult and expensive to turn a non-customer to a customer than making a pre-existing customer buy from us again. This is the main reason why you should also focus efforts to make your current customers comfortable and have them come back to buy from you in the future. Here are some of our recommendations:

  • Make sure that you are selling a quality product. If you don’t, you risk losing customers from buying again. 
  • Make sure that your post-sale attention is great. Many people think that once the sale is done our relationship with the customer is also over, which is a huge error. Be always available for the customer when they have any kind of problem or question.
  • After buying a couple of times from you, offer that customer some kind of gift or a generous discount!
  • Interact with your customers using social media, post comments or give likes!
  • If there’s an issue with a customer, be sure to solve it within 24 hours. Errors can happen, but if you prove to the customer that no matter what happens you will be ready to solve the problem as fast as possible, this is definitely a big point for you.

Did you like our guide of how to start selling online? Did we miss any information that you wish to know? Let us know in the comments section below! And don’t forget to follow us on our social media.

 

xuhao

Hao Xu

Digital marketing and Xiaomi lover, Hao-Xu is constantly looking for new products to fill his house with. He’s a product manager and ecommerce platform expert for us at Clever 🤙 #ecommerce #shopify #prestashop #bigcommerce #woocommerce

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