So eCommerce is in the boom and more and more people are launching niche stores. And with an open source software like nopCommerce which offers so many features out of box and has a great community of developers and enthusiasts alike to help with questions and customization, launching an eCommerce store can’t be any easier, faster and cost effective business.
However, if you are really serious about your eCommerce business, launching a store is just the seed. You will need to do a lot more to have these seeds grow to a big tree. In this article, I list a few mistakes you shouldn’t make after you launch your first eCommerce store.
1. Don't wait for your customers, approach them
The customers will have to know that you exist. A good SEO is obviously a way to go. Most of the themes on nopCommerce marketplace are SEO friendly. And the default theme is also SEO optimized if you are just starting. Google Adwords and Facebook Ads are your friends for the start. Their first experience with you will decide the word of mouth promotion that you get.
2. Don't play too many psychological games
While it's true that a customer makes a purchase with emotions, it's not necessarily the only thing. And you should know that. Sometimes this play can go wrong. A simple example could be showing your customer only one item left' for so many days or so frequently that it simply makes them think that either nobody is purchasing the product or you are making a fool of them by faking the scarcity. After all excess of anything is fatal.
3. Don't try to teach them something new just to look cool
When customers are visiting your website, they are aware of purchasing steps. They expect your website to work the same way as other websites do. Changing it too much can distract your customers or force them to leave your website. It all refers to Catalog Listing, Checkout Flow, Product Filtering and Product Search.
4. Don't offer discounts that you can't afford
Some store owners, in the rush of quickly acquiring new customers tend to give unreasonable discounts to the customers. While this may be good (and easy) if you have loads of money to spend, for startups this is rarely the case. Startups usually adopt tight budget frameworks. And to go a long way, it's necessary that your products are fairly priced. Remember, there are many factors that converts a visitor into customer and discount is just one of them.
Instead, devise new ways of encouraging customers to purchase with you such as next purchase discounts, better customer service, loyalty points and such.
5. Don't ignore customers after they are sold
A customer has bought from you and shown some trust in your product. Now it's your time to prove that he made the right choice by offering the best after sale service. Consider him or her as your only customer and that if they are not happy with your customer service, your business is going to shut down. Amazon knows this very well and therefore has the one of the best customer services around.
6. Don't forget to follow up with your prospects
This is similar to previous point except that it's a pre-sale situation. A customer has shown interest in your product, added the product to the cart and that's it. He didn't checkout, he didn't ask anything. He just left. Now what? There are always cases when you have lots of abandoned carts. Do follow your customers at least once after they've their cart abandoned. A simple email asking about why didn't they checkout will give you good insights about what should be your next step. This also complements step 5 and shows customers that you care.
7. Don't underestimate product reviews
No matter if it's a new customer or a returning one, if they want to purchase a product, they will read product reviews. And believe it or not, it's not easy to ask customers to provide a review for your products. nopCommerce marketplace has a number of plugins to help you with that. You may configure your shop to send automatic reminders to customers after few days of purchase, asking them to review the product they purchased. Even if a few of them clicks the link, you get some good counts.
Launching eCommerce stores surely is a viable business and making a brand is surely achievable however these post launch mistakes are some essential to be avoided in the long run. Do you have any other experience that you think you should have avoided? Please do comment in the section below.
Author: Anshul Sojatia is a founder of Sojatia Infocrafts Pvt. Ltd., a web and mobile development company from Central India. He is a tech geek and likes to try new web technologies. A passionate coder by heart, he has been writing applications with Microsoft.NET technologies for over 11 years. He has been using nopCommerce since version 3.1 and since then has been an avid fan and encouraged a lot of clients to use the software.