Setting up an ecommerce shop for your small business is easier than ever thanks to platforms such as Squarespace, Shopify and BigCommerce. Alas, there's more to it than simply registering for a shop and adding products. Use the following ecommerce best practices to set your small business up for success:
Include attractive, professional-looking photos
Quality photography is one of the most important elements of ecommerce. Make sure your photos are well-composed and and consistent in their look across your site. If your budget doesn't include a professional photo shoot, check out Shopify's DIY Guide for Product Photography. Encourage sharing on Pinterest by including a Pin It button.
Include a blog
Blogging is one of the best ways to attract traffic to your small business site as well as build credibility with your target audience. For example, if you sell baby gear, blogging about baby gear reviews or baby shower gift ideas will help to attract people interested in buying baby products. Additionally, you can link to products from the blog posts.
Tell Your Story
Site visitors want to know who you are and what makes your product unique. This information could include anything from why your company was started or your mission statement, to biographies and photos of your team. Consider a quality explainer video of your product in action to show customers why they should choose your product.
Incorporate email marketing
As people visit your ecommerce site and buy products, encourage them to opt into your email marketing list. This is a fantastic way to build relationships, earn trust, and get both new and repeat business. The money, they say, is "in the list," so make sure to start building that list as part of your ecommerce adventure.
Write your own product descriptions
Sure, you could copy and paste the blurbs provided by your drop shipper or product manufacturer, but that's what most everyone else is doing. If you want your site to stand out and appeal to your target customer, write your own descriptions. This will also help attract search engine traffic.
Take advantage of traditional and social media
Building an ecommerce store is just the beginning. Customers won't flock to your shop unless they know it exists. Use a blend of both traditional and social media to spread the word and entice potential customers to your store. Does your small business sell something related to the travel industry? Consider paying for an ad in a travel magazine. Learn where your target market spends time on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, etc.), then build up your presence on those channels and engage with your followers.
Include calls to action in your copy
A call to action is a prompt that tells prospects what action you want them to take. You likely have a "buy now" or "add to cart" button accompanying each product description -- that's a call to action. But, calls to action are not limited to product descriptions -- they should be used throughout your site. For example, your blog posts should end with some sort of call to action such as: check out more product reviews, leave a comment, download a catalog, or sign up for our newsletter.
Building a small business ecommerce site can be a rewarding and profitable experience, if you follow simple best practices.
If your business would like assistance evaluating ecommerce platforms, please contact us for a consultation.
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