Whether you’re embarking on a digital journey to amplify your brick-and-mortar presence or launching a direct-to-consumer (DTC) retail venture, the world of online commerce holds boundless opportunities. In this article, we unveil the strategic pillars that underpin a thriving online business. From crafting an alluring design that resonates with your brand’s essence, to weaving compelling narratives that engage your audience, and harnessing the power of SEO and marketing, we equip you with the knowledge to sculpt a winning ecommerce formula. Join us as we delve into the essential elements that will elevate your online store, making it an unforgettable experience for your customers and a flourishing hub for your brand’s growth.
Incorporate the Elements of Design
First and foremost you want to design a user-friendly, functional website that is “on-brand”, meaning the color scheme, font, and imagery should complement whatever product or service you’re offering.
For example, if you created a clothing line for office workers, you want to display a stylish and sleek website. You might lean toward more elegant fonts and avoid any whacky designs. But if you’re selling outdoor toys for children, you might want to display vibrant colors and playful fonts and icons throughout the website.
Incorporate the Elements of Storytelling
The website should be easy to navigate and allow for safe and secure payments, but it should also tell a story about your brand. For example, the About Us page can share the origins of your business and your career background. An active blog can keep customers up to date on what’s new with your company, be it new hires, an exciting product launch or a post that showcases your expertise in the industry.
Pick an Ecommerce Platform
Launching an online store starts with a bright idea–as well as a reliable ecommerce website builder. BigCommerce, Hostinger, GoDaddy Store Builder, as well as Shopify, are just some of the tried and true ecommerce site builders. These platforms create fast and easy routes to launching a retail website because they offer built-in tools to help entrepreneurs manage payments, inventory, shipping, and other ecommerce operations. You can choose from templates and customize in order to build and design the online store you envisioned.
Creating a beautiful and effective website is not enough. You need a solid marketing strategy to make sure customers can find you online.
The most well-known route is through paid ad placements, such as sponsored posts on Instagram or Facebook, or purchasing Google Ads. Paid marketing is a popular route and a great way to get eyeballs onto your new website. You can start with small investments to fine tune your targeting and strategy and scale up spend as you see success.
A budget-friendly way to reach customers is through SEO, or search engine optimization. In this marketing strategy, you leverage keywords related to the products you are offering. You create content related to these keywords either through blogs or product pages with the keywords included in page headlines, descriptions, URL links, etc. As customers type in search queries for whatever they are seeking, Google and other search engines will pull from websites with related keywords. This is a powerful and organic source for website traffic.
Create it as a Hub for Customer Service
Even if you have booming sales on a marketplace like Amazon, Etsy or Ebay, it’s worth creating a dedicated business website to help customers easily find you and send you referrals. A single branded URL makes it easy for customers to remember as well as share with friends. A dedicated website also provides a platform for customers to learn more about your business, such as expanded product offerings, your founding story, and other shipping and return policies. Include contact information and the best way for customers to reach you. Be sure to always link to your official business website on Amazon, other retail platforms, as well as social media pages. Think of your business website as a way to give customers the opportunity to further engage with your business and learn more.
Commit to a Strategy and Monitor the Data
The key is to determine the best strategy for your business, depending on the product and target customer, then commit to it for three to six months. Monitor the data and metric responses–note what kind of words and images are resonating among your audience; and decide three to six months later if this strategy is working for your venture. Adjust and test again!