Running a successful eCommerce business comes with a plethora of benefits – flexibility, fulfillment, autonomy, not to mention unlimited earning opportunities. But it’s also one of the most competitive environments to operate in, so here are 6 ways to give your eCommerce business the best chance for success.
Launching an eCommerce business is a daunting task. You’re probably not the first person to decide to sell your product or service, and you might even be up against big brands that have built empires in your industry. But you’re here for a reason – you know you have something to add to the market, and as long as you do your research, understand your customer, implement best practices and build an unparalleled brand identity, you can be ahead of your competitors. So let’s get started.
1. Analyze your competitors
The first step is to understand what your competition is doing. That’s why thorough competitor analysis is the foundation of a successful eCommerce business. This involves researching your major competitors to gain invaluable insight into their products, their sales, their marketing techniques, their unique selling proposition (USP) and their brand strategy.
The purpose of this analysis is not to copy your competitor – it’s the opposite. The idea is to identify opportunities where you can out-perform them, whether that’s through your brand messaging, product, service or simply through your targeted advertising strategy.
A lot of this information is readily available online, from pricing to content strategy to the technology stack the company uses. Now you need to figure out how you can do it better.
2. Define your target audience
Once you’ve done a thorough competitor analysis, it’s time to define your target audience. Don’t rely on your instincts here – do research. Marketing Evolution has written a comprehensive guide on how to identify your target audience. They share how to analyze your customer base, how to conduct research and the importance of personas based on data and surveys to help you pinpoint your customers.
Identifying your target audience takes a lot of analysis. Here, Google Analytics is your friend as they offer key insights into the type of content your audience is consuming, which will help you make data-driven decisions. ryze is your friend here, too. We identify people who are ready to make a purchase, and match their needs with our partners.
3. Build a brand
Building a brand identity that will appeal to your target audience is key to a successful eCommerce business. The beauty of an online business is you can reach hundreds of thousands of people instantly – but that also puts a lot of pressure on your branding. People make decisions in a split-second, so unless your communications are on-point from the get-go, the success of your business is at risk.
Use the intel from your research to work with a design team to create unique, eye-catching, irresistible branding that demands people’s attention. But a brand identity doesn’t stop at design – it also includes tone of voice, a brand mission statement, a USP and your social media presence. The key here is consistency. Humans are predictable creatures, and part of the reason we’re loyal to brands is because we know what to expect from them. So make sure your brand is consistent across every touch-point, and don’t forget to make it original so you can stand out from the crowd and embed your brand in the public psyche.
4. Data is everything
It’s tempting for new business owners to follow their guts – and this is fantastic, as long as you follow the numbers as well. Entrepreneurs often feel so attached to their concept or idea that they’ll run away with it, despite the data suggesting otherwise. But the numbers never lie. You might like a certain logo, phrase or mission, but that doesn’t mean it’ll bring you sales. So leave your ego at the door, trust the data and the sales will follow.
An article by onecoremedia says it can be tempting to make snap decisions based on the latest online trends or because of an unexplained change in performance. But there are tons of tools out there to help you understand your customer’s interests and predict their purchase decisions. Qmarkets, for example, has a suite of innovative tools designed to grow your market based on your audience’s purchase behavior, while Google Analytics, hotjar, and SEM Rush are the go-to tools for eCommerce businesses.
5. Enhance customer satisfaction
When talking about eCommerce, user experience goes beyond the digital environment and enters the real world. You need to make sure that your users will have a great experience not only on your site but also when receiving your products. You can:
* Minimize delivery time as much as possible.
* Allow users to track delivery, so they stay informed every step of the process.
* Provide users with cool brand-related packaging to increase excitement when receiving your product.
* Build a support system and FAQs for any issues that may arise.
* Have a clear delivery and returns policy. Keep things as simple as you can.
Drop shippers! choose your partners carefully. Remember that all of your business logistics is in their hands.
6. Test, test and test some more!
You get the idea – there’s not much guess-work involved when it comes to launching a successful eCommerce business. Understanding your audience is all about trial and error, and the best way to do this is through A/B testing. Whether you’re targeting your customers through online banner ads or SEO-optimized blog articles, you can test just about everything to find out what’s working and what isn’t. That includes images, button positions, titles, email subjects – you name it, you can test it.
Just remember, user behavior is constantly changing, and something that works today might not work next year. So don’t stop testing, and always stay flexible – the most successful businesses are the most adaptable businesses.
Sivan Kuvent is a Senior Product Manager at ryzebeyond.com.
If you’d like to learn more about how ryze can increase your sales, get in touch today.