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3 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Starting an eCommerce Business

Posted by Drew Melendy on Aug 12, 2019 3:04:51 PM
Drew Melendy

Whether you run a brick-and-mortar or plan to operate exclusively online, eCommerce can help you expand your reach, increase visibility and boost your profits. But there’s more to it than setting up a website and hoping that people will buy from you.

If you want to win with eCommerce, you need to avoid some big mistakes businesses make when they first launch their online stores. Here are 3 common mistakes to steer clear of.

Shopify is a common provider of eCommerce websites for small business.

1. Thinking, "if you build it, they will come." 

At first glance, this may seem obvious. However, there are few industries as competitive as eCommerce. It's imperative to advertise your online business, and you need to meet your target audience whenever and wherever you can.

Today there are more ways to reach customers than we could have imagined not so long ago - websites, mobile apps, social media pages, VIP groups, SMS text messages, and emails, just to name a few! You don’t have to market or sell on every channel available. The point is simply to offer customers the choice to buy from you on the channels they prefer.

It can seem overwhelming to pick and choose where to start with your online presence. Firstly, you will want to build a website. Branded websites will always be the central hub for established online businesses. 

Secondly, you will want to build an online presence where you can find your target audience. Millions of people log into Facebook and Instagram daily, so it makes the most sense to start with social media, as these sites are the largest hang out spots on the net. Here you can gain the most exposure and build customer relationships with those who can advocate for your brand. The best part? It’s free.

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2. Expecting technology to do it all.

Don't expect technology to run your business for you. Though automation can make business owners’ lives much easier, there is still much work to be done behind the scenes.

Inventory intake, scheduling, branding, customer support, all require time and effort on your part. Technology can greatly assist you, but it cannot replace you. It can only be as good as the people behind it.
Related Reading: How Business Owners Use Tech to Save Time



3. Not being human enough.

Customers buy from people they know and trust. It was true before the internet, and it remains true now. Going digital doesn’t mean you need to lose the human connection. 

Add an About page that tells your story and mission, provide excellent customer service, and frequently connect with customers through social media, where you can have a two way dialogue.

There’s a lot of competition out there. You’d be surprised what a difference it can make to gain the trust of your customers. Their loyalty will stay with you even if they can find similar products elsewhere.

Final Thoughts

If you want to not only survive but excel at eCommerce, you will need to market everywhere, put in the work, and cultivate customer relationships. These three lessons are the core of every online business. As such, you will continuously need to work on them wherever your business may take you.

Topics: Technology, Brick-and-Mortar

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