The first year of an e-commerce business is crucial to its success and failure. A lot can go wrong and it’s important to be prepared for the worst. But if you’re just starting out, this article will teach you what to do so your first year goes as smoothly as possible. And if you’ve been in the game a while, maybe some of these tips will help you avoid some common mistakes…
1: Set A Realistic Budget
This should go without saying, but it’s absolutely crucial to set a realistic budget. It can be tempting to start spending money as soon as you get your first sale but don’t go overboard. Decide how much capital you want to invest in your business and how much you will expect to earn off of this investment. Be realistic about your earnings. Set a strict budget and stick to it so you can scale safely and effectively as your success compounds over time.
2: Build A Site That Can Work For You
It’s tempting to start slapping products on your site without giving much thought to what you’re creating. This is understandable when you’re excited in the early days, but it often leads to lots of redesigns and frustrated customers later on down the line. The point here is that you should strive to create something that can work for years to come. Don’t get too cute with it or try to be a trailblazer in this field. Your business will only grow if you’re able to use the site yourself and update it without too much trouble. Keep things simple and build something that reflects your brand, but focus on functionality first and design second.
3: Create a Great Brand
Great products aren’t worth squat if no one knows about them. In order to get more sales, you need to get your products in front of more people, and for many new e-commerce entrepreneurs, branding is the best way to do this. A great brand can make or break someone’s decision to purchase something from your site. It provides a sense of security knowing that all your products are created by one company. And if they love your brand, they may be more likely to purchase from you time and time again, which is where the real money is when it comes to e-commerce success.
4: Don’t Try To Sell Everything
The toughest part of running an e-commerce business is creating a profit margin for all the products you sell. Unless you’re selling one-of-a-kind custom clothes or handcrafted jewelry, it’s going to be tough to make a profit on every single sale. This means you need to be selective about the products you sell and focus on items that have a high-profit margin. This can be difficult, but it’s important to remember that you’re in this for the long haul, not to make a quick buck. Try to find a niche and focus on selling products that fit within it. This will help you attract the right customers and increase your chances of making a profit.
5: Use Automation Tools
Running an e-commerce business can be a lot of work, but it doesn’t have to be all manual labor. There are a number of great automation tools out there that can help take some of the load off your shoulders. Shopify’s shipping feature, for example, can automatically print labels and track packages for you. This takes the guesswork out of shipping and makes it easier to manage your orders. There are also a number of great apps that can help you keep track of your inventory, social media, and finances. So make sure to take advantage of these tools to help make your life a little bit easier.
6: Don’t Be Afraid To Promote Your Site
One of the biggest mistakes that new e-commerce entrepreneurs make is not promoting their site enough. You need to let people know your store exists and how they can find it. At first, this may mean sharing links on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook. But ecommerce link building is equally powerful (if not more so), and it’s always something worth considering for your store.