It is no secret that online shopping is taking over the internet and that is why so many brands are moving towards that channel. Building an e-commerce store can help you reach new markets and increase brand recognition.
Modern e-commerce platforms are inexpensive and highly user-friendly, allowing you to construct a customized website for your e-commerce business with a few clicks. Most e-commerce store platforms also provide important elements like secure payment, shipping and marketing as plug-and-play options. Because these platforms are so innovative, you do not need any coding skills to create a professional e-commerce website.
Starting your own e-commerce website allows you to manage all elements of your client’s experience, from branding to shipping to customer support. You can construct it yourself or hire a developer but knowing the process will help you make educated decisions and create a website that is ideal for selling your items.
In this article, we will discuss how you can build an e-commerce store in 6 easy steps.
Make an initial plan for both your store launch and future operations
While it may seem obvious, the first step to building a successful e-commerce storefront is to create a sturdy, long-term plan. A great place to start is brainstorming and testing product ideas. Once you have ideated a unique approach, you can initiate market research and the competitor landscape. Even the most basic e-commerce brands that are successful take the time to verify that product market fit
As your company expands, it is critical to anticipate your most pressing needs and obstacles. and difficulties. If you intend to sell physical goods, consider ahead of time how you want your logistics and shipping operations to look. Staff bandwidth and delivery methods should be examined if your product is shared digitally. Other services like 24/7 customer support should be determined ahead of time to ensure resources are allocated properly. You can do this by listing clearly what you intend to sell, what avenues you will use to deliver it, and outlining constraints. Not sure exactly how to start? Define your brand’s mission statement and values to use as your north star.
How you want your logistics and shipping operations to look. Staff bandwidth and delivery methods should be examined if your product is shared digitally. Other services like 24/7 customer support should be determined ahead of time to ensure resources are allocated properly. You can do this by listing clearly what you intend to sell, what avenues you will use to deliver it, and outlining constraints. Not sure exactly how to start? Define your brand’s mission statement and values to use as your north star.
Secure a unique domain name
Your domain, commonly known as a URL, is your web address. This is your e-commerce website’s “home” on the internet, and it is what customers type into the browser bar to access your site. Choosing a unique domain name is critical to your overall success and branding. If feasible, use a business and domain name that is closely related to what you sell. By incorporating descriptive keywords or key phrases into your business and domain name, your consumers will know what you sell, and it will also help you rank well in search engines, which is critical to your company’s SEO strategy.
Once you’ve decided on a name, you can register it with a domain registrar such as GoDaddy, Bluehost, or Google Domains. Simply go to one of these websites and type in your company name. If your name is already taken, these services will show you alternatives, such as .net or .co, or an alternate name. It’s best to go with a .com because it is the most prevalent and trusted domain extension. However, if you have your heart set on a specific name and the .com is already taken, the .net and .co choices are generally recognized as well.
Choose your e-commerce store platform
The next step in creating your e-commerce store is to choose the best e-commerce platform for your expanding business’s operational needs. When starting an e-commerce brand, many founders do not have the time to manually code a website from scratch. Most e-commerce platforms are easy to use and do not require any prior knowledge in coding or website design. Your e-commerce platform is where your site “lives” online, and there are several alternatives available to you. You should ideally develop an e-commerce website on a platform that is both versatile and simple to use. Choosing an e-commerce platform is a critical stage in the process of creating an e-commerce brand. So, before choosing a solution, take the time to test-drive the choices. Not sure what options are out there? Refer to this article which closely evaluates the pros and cons of the top 5 e-commerce platforms of 2021.
Design your website
After you’ve decided on a store platform, you can begin building your e-commerce website. Start by considering what you want to feature in addition to your products. As you design your e-commerce website, you can add an about page, customer service page and a contact page to enable potential customers to interact with you. Make sure to feature your brand imagery and logo throughout your website. You should also include product photos, videos, detailed product descriptions, item sizes, and pricing on your pages.
Choose a theme that fits your business and helps you to show off your items to their greatest advantage. Build product categories that make sense to your consumers. Learn everything you can about your target customer and build a site with their preferences in mind. You have to remember ever element of your website design will contribute to the user’s experience and eventually their buying decisions.
Adding a blog is another excellent method to produce continuing content and boost your e-commerce website’s search engine results. Blog posts, when done correctly, may become an integral component of your entire marketing plan.
Set up the payment tools
When developing an e-commerce website, there are three critical elements to consider: how you will price your items, how consumers will pay you, and how you will deposit those funds into your own bank account. When pricing your items for sale online, there are several things to consider, such as the cost of materials per item, e-commerce site hosting, shipping, taxes, and deductions from various organizations such as PayPal, credit cards, and so on.
Then, determine how you want your e-commerce site to collect payments. Most of the e-commerce website platforms have ready-to-use connectivity with popular payment services like Square, PayPal, and Stripe. Shopify Payments, their own payment system, is also an option. Enabling payment processing on your e-commerce store platform is what will allow you to start making conversions and real revenue.
Integrate shipping and marketing tools
Another important step in creating an e-commerce website is to integrate shipping and marketing tools into your site. Shipping software should be integrated with your e-commerce platform to expedite the order fulfillment process. Items are easily connected to shipping software via integrated shipping, allowing you to pick carriers and delivery options, print labels, and immediately inform consumers when their orders ship. BigCommerce, Shopify, and WooCommerce all have built-in shipping, so the connectivity is already complete and the setup is quick. Most other e-commerce store platforms require connection from a third-party solution, such as ShipStation or ShippingEasy, in order to print labels and trigger customer alerts. These connections work well with most systems, although they might incur recurring fees. Once your shipping solution is in place, you can charge your clients shipping fees by creating shipping rates. Most e-commerce websites allow you to charge real-time rates, which are the actual shipping costs for each order. Alternatively, you may set up flat prices depending on order totals, or provide free shipping.
Like shipping integrations, most e-commerce website systems include powerful marketing plug-ins. There are thousands of software platforms out there designed to make your marketing activities easier, like creating e-mail lists, distributing promotions, posting on social media, and more.
After completing all these steps, your e-commerce store is almost ready to launch. The best thing you can do at this stage is completing a few test orders. Once these were successful and all other issues are ironed out, you are set to launch! Having your own website is a critical component of any e-commerce strategy. It is an excellent method to expand your brand, attract loyal consumers, obtain fresh insights, and be creative with your marketing. Check out Fulfyld if you’re looking for a partner to assist you fulfill e-commerce orders from your website. Contact us today for more information!