Building eCommerce Websites That Work - Part 1
You want to succeed at eCommerce? Welcome to a very big family. Right off, let's be clear - there are lots of ways to do business on the internet. And lots of ways to both make and lose money. Successful eCommerce websites come in all shapes, kinds and colors and while I can't cover every type of site in this series, I will present the basics you need to consider and apply for an eCommerce web site to be successful.
Let's begin by assuming you have some of the fundamentals, that you understand the language and that you are serious. I'm not going to tell you how to set up a web site or get a decent hosting account. We're beyond those basics. The basics here are the factors which will influence the success (or failure) and the degree of success your eCommerce web site experiences.
First and foremost, you need to provide value for your customers. Absurd as it seems to have to repeat that, a lot of so-called eCommerce sites provide no or very little value for their visitors. Pretending to offer value is not the same thing as providing value. Promoting miserably written, hackneyed, cloned ebooks filled with questionably useful and/or outdated content doesn't make a high value web site. Sure you might make some money. Once. And you'll end up with a high refund rate - and an unhappy credit card processor. That path means you're taking advantage of inexperienced customers and abusing their willingness to trust you. This isn't the way to a long-term business with steady repeat customers.
Value on the net is not very different from any kind of off-line retail sales -- a quality product line that will attract potential customers and a competitive price that will lead to purchases. An honest, quality product that will meet the expectations you've created in your buyers. Hyped junk just doesn't cut it.
Next, you've got to have a smooth, user-friendly, easy to follow process all the way to your thank you page. The simpler, cleaner and clearer you can make the process, the better. Where it makes sense you can augment this user-responsive site profile by adding live-response chat.
If you do decide to use call-in or live chat, it's imperative that your operators be well-trained, understand your products and your system and be customer friendly. This can be a problem if you outsource. The less expensive out-source call centers can turn out to be very expensive in terms of lost sales and customers who never come back.
You'll need to check very carefully and be 100 per cent certain the operators actually speak and understand the primary language(s) of your targeted customer group. You'll need to provide extensive background information and highly flexible, well-written scripts.
You should collect your own customer evaluations - separately. Don't rely exclusively on any monitoring or customer satisfaction surveys provided by the call center. Track your ROI to be sure it's money well-spent. Don't stop monitoring just because the results looked good for the first two or three months. Things change. Make sure you're tracking desired actions linked to the call center separately from those NOT related to call-in or live chat. Mixing outcomes leaves you in the dark about what's really happening.
You probably should have an attractive website. An ugly site can work, but to do that you need to absolutely know exactly what you're doing and why it should work. And you'll have to test like crazy to optimize (of course, you should be doing that anyway). The ugly site tactic is not for the inexperienced. Very few individuals really have the grasp of marketing, market and customer psychology that makes for a successful "ugly" site.
To provide a pleasant experience, you need to be careful in what you use - colors, text-size, graphics, animation and white space can add value to your site or turn it into a user nightmare. Test your site with people who will tell you the truth. Just because you love it doesn't mean anyone else will. In general, aiming for a professional appearing site is your best option. Look for the highest ranked, busiest sites in your business area and study the layouts they use. Extract the common features that you see on those sites. While other factors heavily influence traffic and ranking, appearance has a strong effect on visitors and sites that do testing evolve toward optimizing visitor behavior.
Keep in mind that a site's desired actions affect the design and layout. You'll want to study sites where those actions are most similar to the desired actions you target on your web site. If your goal is direct product sales, there's not much point in emulating a site that's optimized for newsletter sign-ups or AdSense.
If your main goal is direct sales (and if it is, then you need backend products too), provide incentives for customers to buy AND to return. The return factor is critical to a long-term strategy for success. Anyone who buys is your best possible future customer. Keep them, track them, make them special offers. Use coupons, discounts, special deals, customer-only offers and back end sales. Your customer base is your gold mine. Since they've shown enough faith in you to buy, do your utmost to never damage that faith. Treat them like the priceless resource they are. Think long-term: successful eCommerce websites are all about value and customer service.
Copyright 2005 Richard Keir
Richard teaches, trains and consults, on and off-line, on business and professional presentations, eCommerce, site building and programming. And writes a lot. Visit http://www.Building-eCommerce-Websites.com for articles, information, resources and links and check our blog at http://www.Building-eCommerce-Websites/blog for opinion and ideas.
Changes to B2B ecommerce coming fast Digital Commerce 360
30 Under 30 Retail & E-commerce 2023: Meet The Young Entrepreneurs Reshaping The Retail Industry - Forbes
30 Under 30 Retail & E-commerce 2023: Meet The Young Entrepreneurs Reshaping The Retail Industry Forbes
The impact of e-commerce on business CEOWORLD magazine
Live shopping set to shake up ecommerce Retail Dive
Black Friday 2022 e-commerce reaches record $9.12B, Thanksgiving $5.3B; BNPL and mobile are big hits - TechCrunch
Black Friday 2022 e-commerce reaches record $9.12B, Thanksgiving $5.3B; BNPL and mobile are big hits TechCrunch
BetterCommerce is transforming ecommerce with API-first Headless Suite & Composable modules - YourStory
BetterCommerce is transforming ecommerce with API-first Headless Suite & Composable modules YourStory
Hong Kong E-Commerce Logistics Association (HKELA) collaborates with Cyberport to Promote Digital Freight and Smart Logistics - Yahoo Eurosport UK
Hong Kong E-Commerce Logistics Association (HKELA) collaborates with Cyberport to Promote Digital Freight and Smart Logistics Yahoo Eurosport UK
Ecommerce Brands Raised Money During The Pandemic But Are At Risk Now That Consumer Spending Is Down. - Forbes
Ecommerce Brands Raised Money During The Pandemic But Are At Risk Now That Consumer Spending Is Down. Forbes
TechSparks 2022: Growth lessons from powering leading global ecommerce and fintech brands - YourStory
The Ecommerce Accountants are Winners of ClickFunnels Elite 'Two Comma Club' for Performance Excellence - Shoreline Beacon
The Ecommerce Accountants are Winners of ClickFunnels Elite 'Two Comma Club' for Performance Excellence Shoreline Beacon
Quantifying the global e-commerce slowdown TechCrunch
Integrating Crypto Payment to Ecommerce Cryptonews
US holiday ecommerce sales will grow just 2.5% Insider Intelligence
Ecommerce Product Releases: November 2, 2022 Practical Ecommerce
The State of eCommerce: Pre- and Post-Pandemic (2022) Influencer Marketing Hub
Turmoil for Chinese Ecommerce and Tech Companies Practical Ecommerce
TikTok Launches eCommerce Feature in US PYMNTS.com
Ecommerce Product Releases: November 15, 2022 Practical Ecommerce
Crossroads, a Newly Launched eCommerce Store is Offering Amazing Deals on Gadgets and Electronics - Digital Journal
Crossroads, a Newly Launched eCommerce Store is Offering Amazing Deals on Gadgets and Electronics Digital Journal
Saltbox Raises $35M In Series B Funding Round To Support Technology-Driven Logistics Enablement For Small Ecom - Black Enterprise
Saltbox Raises $35M In Series B Funding Round To Support Technology-Driven Logistics Enablement For Small Ecom Black Enterprise
The 9 Pages Your Ecommerce Website Should Include Entrepreneur
E-commerce growing in Indiana 953mnc.com
10 Last-minute Holiday Revenue Boosters Practical Ecommerce
Global eCommerce Transactions Expected To Grow 15% During 2022 Holiday Season, Showing Optimism - Business Wire
Global eCommerce Transactions Expected To Grow 15% During 2022 Holiday Season, Showing Optimism Business Wire
How can Magento Ecommerce Elevate your Online Business? Data Science Central
Ecommerce Flourishes in Latin America Practical Ecommerce
Century 21 to Relaunch with Enhanced Ecommerce and Fulfillment Capabilities Retail TouchPoints
Open Graph Images and Why They Matter Practical Ecommerce
Reduce “Abondoned Cart” Numbers with These 9 Design Tips for eCommerce ⋆ Business Lancashire - Business Lancashire
Reduce “Abondoned Cart” Numbers with These 9 Design Tips for eCommerce ⋆ Business Lancashire Business Lancashire
Leading retail companies in the ecommerce theme Retail Insight Network
10 Ecommerce Tips To Reduce Abandoned Carts By SafeOpt Search Engine Journal
Grocery e-commerce sales fall 3% in October Grocery Dive
Amazon Shuts Down Wholesale Distributor in India; TikTok Turns to Start-Ups to Revive E-Commerce Business - ExchangeWire
Amazon Shuts Down Wholesale Distributor in India; TikTok Turns to Start-Ups to Revive E-Commerce Business ExchangeWire
18 Alternatives to Twitter Practical Ecommerce
The Impact of E-Commerce · Babson Thought & Action Babson Thought & Action
Amazon gets fresh ecommerce challengers right before the holiday season Insider Intelligence
Alcohol e-commerce sales to rise by 34% The Spirits Business
Logistics Automation Global Market Report 2022: Booming eCommerce Industry Fuels Growth - ResearchAndMarkets.com - Business Wire
Logistics Automation Global Market Report 2022: Booming eCommerce Industry Fuels Growth - ResearchAndMarkets.com Business Wire
PURPOSE DRIVEN E-COMMERCE SITE, OLIVELA LAUNCHES "STAND WITH HER" - A CAMPAIGN IN SUPPORT OF WOMEN'S EMPOWERMENT - Yahoo Finance
PURPOSE DRIVEN E-COMMERCE SITE, OLIVELA LAUNCHES "STAND WITH HER" - A CAMPAIGN IN SUPPORT OF WOMEN'S EMPOWERMENT Yahoo Finance
15 Biggest E-Commerce Companies In USA Yahoo Finance
Ecommerce Personalization Software Market 2023, Size, Product Preferences, Competition Landscape, Share Analysis, Trending Innovation, Company Profiles and Outlook to 2025 - Digital Journal
Ecommerce Personalization Software Market 2023, Size, Product Preferences, Competition Landscape, Share Analysis, Trending Innovation, Company Profiles and Outlook to 2025 Digital Journal
How AI is improving ecommerce sales by analyzing product images for audience relevance - VentureBeat
Ecommerce Personalization Software Market to Witness Huge Growth by 2029 | Salesforce, Emarsys, GeoFli, Monetate, Barilliance, Apptus, LiveChat - openPR
Ecommerce Personalization Software Market to Witness Huge Growth by 2029 | Salesforce, Emarsys, GeoFli, Monetate, Barilliance, Apptus, LiveChat openPR
How can eCommerce ERP improvements help supply chain management? Open Access Government
11 Ways Your eCommerce Company Can Fight Back Against Inflation The Epoch Times
Cold Chain Global Market Report 2022: Rapid Growth in eCommerce & Rising Frozen Food Consumption Fuels Sector - Yahoo Finance
Cold Chain Global Market Report 2022: Rapid Growth in eCommerce & Rising Frozen Food Consumption Fuels Sector Yahoo Finance
Scarce City Launches Bitcoin ECommerce Platform SatsCrap Bitcoin Magazine
Global Commerce - November 2022 PYMNTS.com
How B2B Payments Enhance the E-Commerce Industry Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM)
Ecommerce Applications Are Not As Safe As You Think, Researchers Have Alerted Frenzy Black Friday Sales - Digital Information World
Ecommerce Applications Are Not As Safe As You Think, Researchers Have Alerted Frenzy Black Friday Sales Digital Information World
Global e-Commerce Market to Hit Sales of $58.74 Trillion By 2028 | E-commerce Market Has Come a Long Way, Still Need to Overcome Some Challenges - GlobeNewswire
Global e-Commerce Market to Hit Sales of $58.74 Trillion By 2028 | E-commerce Market Has Come a Long Way, Still Need to Overcome Some Challenges GlobeNewswire
Samsung Flips Black Friday eCommerce on Its Head with New Reverse Auction | LBBOnline - Little Black Book - LBBonline
Samsung Flips Black Friday eCommerce on Its Head with New Reverse Auction | LBBOnline Little Black Book - LBBonline
Who's acquiring who? M&A activity related to ecommerce increased by 1% in the retail, wholesale & foodservice industry in Q3 2022 - Retail Insight Network
Who's acquiring who? M&A activity related to ecommerce increased by 1% in the retail, wholesale & foodservice industry in Q3 2022 Retail Insight Network
Europe B2B Ecommerce Market 2022-2028: Ease and Adoption of Different Payment Modes Drives Growth - ResearchAndMarkets.com - Business Wire
Europe B2B Ecommerce Market 2022-2028: Ease and Adoption of Different Payment Modes Drives Growth - ResearchAndMarkets.com Business Wire
eCommerce - Logistics and Post Coordinator PEDESTRIAN.TV
Competition guidelines for e-commerce firms in the offing: Market share, cross-holding caps may be fixed - The Financial Express
Competition guidelines for e-commerce firms in the offing: Market share, cross-holding caps may be fixed The Financial Express
Choosing on Order Fulfillment Service
When your eCommerce business grows to the point where you can no longer package and ship the orders yourself, it's time to begin outsourcing your order fulfillment. Although all order fulfillment centers offer the same basic services, their individual methods and costs will help you choose one over the other.
Your Readers are Publishers Too
Too often we charge ahead and treat the web as if it were just like any other medium. We know it isn't, but somehow we just can't resist retaining complete control of the creation and publication of our website and newsletter content.
Internet Merchant Accounts For Innocents Abroad
If you want to sell on the internet, your need to accept credit cards. To accept credit cards, you need a merchant account, or access to one.
How to Generate Cash from Your Web Site
The Internet has changed the way people do business today. Most business owners don't have to rent an office in order to run their business.
Drop-Shipping - A Great Way of Making Money Online
Using the Internet to sell products and services to ever increasing number of net users is a good way to start your own business. If you are not taking advantage of this great opportunity you are just missing the boat! Consider this: e-commerce, contrary to popular believe, is thriving and increasing at a double digit growth rate.
Projecting Your Image
Whether you sell a product or merely sell time to your employer in your labor, your main product is you. You sell yourself with every move you make, every word you speak or write, every attitude you display.
10 Second Internet Person, sound familiar?
Some people do not understand the Internet idea of online commerce, but then again some people do not understand themselves either. To fully understand Internet Commerce you really only need to monitor your "clicking habits" for a few days to see where you are going and what if anything you are buying.
Managing Project Risks and Issues
Inherent (or Business) RiskInherent Risk is the risk that exists in the environment around your portal project. It will tend to be unique to your organisation; it's culture and politics.
Content Ever be Profitable?
THE CURRENT WORRIES1. Content SuppliersThe Ethos of Free ContentContent Suppliers is the underprivileged sector of the Internet.
Free Competition Analysis for E-Commerce Startup
For anyone who has completed research regarding e-commerce, there are some common catch phrases that we all come across. 'Competition Analysis' is one of those catch phrases.
7 Must Have Scripts to Look for When Shopping for E-commerce Hosting
When shopping for e-commerce hosting there are a lot of things you need to keep and mind. When you know what to look for it is a lot easier to ensure you get exactly what you need and not leave any important information out.
Is It Easy to Build An E-commerce Web Site?
--Online Commerce--E-Commerce website is all about selling products and services over the Internet. Amateurs may think that it is easy to build your own e-commerce system and our advice to you is to stay away from these amateurs.
Working With Drop Shippers
Drop Shippers, the manufacturers or distributors who are willing to ship their products to your customers, bring a powerful benefit to ecommerce. Online businesses that engage in the wholesale-retail trade can cut down on all the hassles of shipping their products by simply establishing business relationships with drop shippers, and using them as part of their business model.
E-Currency Exchange: The First Bonanza of the 21st Century?
The 21st century has introduced the world to a new way of doing business. It's now a foregone conclusion that global commerce will be as revolutionized by it as Henry Ford's mass-production techniques were a defining characteristic of the 1900s.
Why Suppliers Should Use B2B Exchanges
Business to business e-commerce is on the rise! Worldwide B2B e-commerce revenues are estimated to reach around US$ 2 trillion in 2004. This is a significant leap from last year's US$ 1.
Intranet Project Names - Some Ideas
"What's in a name? That which we call a rose By any other word would smell as sweet."In this famous quote from Act II of Romeo and Juliet, Juliet tells Romeo that a name is an artificial and meaningless convention, and the fact he is a Montague and she a Capulet (warring families) means nothing to their love.
Intranet Portals - Search and Taxonomies
Knowledge Management for beginnersKnowledge Management (KM) can be defined simply as the process through which organizations generate value from their intellectual and knowledge-based assets. Knowledge assets are often grouped into two categories:(1) Explicit KnowledgeGenerally, everything and anything that can be documented, archived and codified.
Do You Need A Merchant Account?
Deciding when to get your own merchant account for internet sales can be a confusing and expensive venture. If you have a small to medium sized business and only sell a small amount of products then having your own merchant account may not be the answer for you.
Increasing E-commerce Website Sales
With consumers purchasing billions of dollars of merchandise online each and every year, the Internet has become the key to financial security. The e-commerce business has consistently thrived well above all other online enterprises, and continues to flourish.
Web advertising e-Marketing Places!
Overview:What is web advertising?Internet Advertising is popularly known as web advertising. Internet webadvertising giving Opportunity to the advertiser to target geographic country wise, subject wise, targeted Customers only from more than 200 countries worldwide.
|home | site map|