If you’ve ever bought anything online then you’ll definitely have used an e-commerce website before. Many businesses are using e-commerce to promote and sell their products and services. This blog is a beginner’s guide to e-commerce.
What is e-commerce?
E-commerce first began in 1994 and has come a long way since then, it generally refers to anything that has been bought or sold via online services. E-commerce websites are popular for businesses as it means products and services can be sold directly rather than through the use of a third party website. An e-commerce sale can take place on any device that is connected to the internet.
Some businesses choose to utilise a physical shop as well as an e-commerce store, however this is not a requirement. In recent years, many businesses have chosen to only make sales via online channels. It just depends on what works best for your business.
E-commerce has different variations based on the style of business that you operate, these include – Business to Business (B2B), Business to Consumer (B2C) or Consumer to Consumer (C2C).
Setting up an e-commerce business
Starting up your own business is an exciting yet challenging time. You’ve probably already developed your idea and decided on your method of sales. It doesn’t matter if you’ve decided to solely rely on e-commerce or you’ve already sorted the premises, the practice of setting up an e-commerce business is the same.
The first step is to decide on the name of your business, you need to think carefully about this and when you’ve decided you can register your business. Then it’s time to get creative with your branding and get your logo designed.
After you’ve consolidated the finer details such as creating the product and defining the costs involved, it’s time to find a digital marketing agency to help you along the way. Your marketing agency can help you to find a suitable URL for your new e-commerce site. After acquiring your URL, you can begin planning the design of your site.
There are many platforms that can be used for your e-commerce website, your website designer will be able to offer you advice and support on which platform is best for you.
A good e-commerce website will…
Be mobile friendly
This is necessary for SEO purposes. A few years ago Google announced its ‘mobile first index’ which means that websites will rank higher on the search engines if they are mobile friendly. Being mobile friendly means that features of a site will alter to fit the size of the screen that they are being shown on, for example the menu navigation may be condensed.
Have an appealing design
The design of a website is very important. A high quality website will utilise a range of content types and be image rich. Users often don’t visit sites to read pages and pages of content, they usually go to check out products and therefore images are useful.
Organisation is key for a good quality website and it’s very easy to implement. This can be achieved through the use of a menu navigation. It’s a good idea to separate sections on a website into sub categories. This can be done if you offer variations of the same product. Having an organised website means that users can find their way around easily which may lead to them being more likely to purchase a product or service from you.
Having an e-commerce website is a great way to drive traffic, gain business recognition and make sales to customers. If you need any help with your e-commerce website, please don’t hesitate to contact us, we’re happy to help.