Article cover - laptop typing

How to Build a Successful Online Store

Joe Schwartz

Joe Schwartz

eCommerce Editor

When was the last time you went out to shop for a new pair of jeans? Or went to an electronics store to purchase a laptop? Probably a while ago right? With the rise of eCommerce stores, it has become much easier to order products that we need directly to our front door without having to leave the house.

So, it's no surprise that more and more people in the world of retail are creating their own eCommerce stores. What makes it even more appealing to take your store online, is the fact that eCommerce website builders are accessible to almost everyone, without needing to be a coder! The question is, what are the fundamentals? What important features does your online store need in order to run smoothly and ultimately be successful?

Choosing the Right Platform
The right online platform is one of the major determining factors if you must have a successful online store. If you desire to use a social media platform as a market, do not use an outdated platform hoping that one day it would come back alive. Use a social platform with lots of users. This is because, the more users you have on a platform, the more opportunities you have to meet the right audience.

Make Sure That Your Web Design Is up to Scratch
People are drawn to what they see, that's why its important for your website to be visually appealing. The nature of your web design can either draw the interest of viewers or make them ignore your product. Even with the best product in stock, poor web design will only kill the interest of your prospective customer. So, ensure your online store has an attractive and eye-catching web design as this would help invite more customers to your online store. If you do not have the tools or technical skills to create your own website design and don’t have the funds to afford a website designer, many online website builders offer these services and make it quick and easy to produce a professional-looking site.

Mobile and Tablet Compatibility
As a result of the increasing use of phones, a large part of online shopping has been recorded to be done via smartphone. In order to make your store accessible to the widest possible audience, it must be compatible with smartphones, tablets and other devices so that it is not limited to desktop. An online store that is selective or limited when it comes to the kinds of gadgets that can be used to access it Would mean missing out on a lot of customers and this would limit the sales of your products.

Have a Rich About us Page
The importance of an ‘About us’ page on a website is often overseen or underestimated. When a user gets to your landing page, the next place they will likely go to is your about us page. In fact, it is extremely important for your most profitable customers when they are making a decision about whether to go ahead and purchase your product/service or not. However, while in the quest to make it rich, ensure you avoid cluttering your About Us page with too much information and ensure that is concise and to the point, including the most important details that you wish to portray about your company. The about us page should also contain basic details like the business contact information, address and social media accounts if any.

Ensure That Your Products Are of a High Quality
The quality of a product or service is of the utmost importance when running an eCommerce store. When customers are assured of the quality of your products, they are more likely to return to your site and purchase again. Ensuring that your products are high in quality will also boost your reputation through reviews and word of mouth.

Security is one of the most important features if you want to build a successful online store and therefore it should be PCI compliant in order to prevent any fraud. It is important that your customers feel safe when using your site, that way they are more likely to return. All transactions should be safe and secure. Having a secured online store means that no crucial information such as credit card information is stored in a readable format. All passwords especially that of customers during transactions or credit card purchase should be hashed. Ensure all checkouts are done through a well-secured payment gateway. Ensure your server and web page is well protected also, this is done via SSL protection, keeping all of your data private.

Shopping Carts
Shopping carts are a necessary item in any online store. Shopping carts are used by customers to store products while they continue with the checkout process. A flexible shopping cart is most preferable as it gives room for both registered users and guest users to checkouts. Flexible shopping carts make shopping process faster and more efficient for both registered users and guest users.

Provide Several Payment Methods
A singular payment medium would only limit your amount of customer purchase on products as different customers have a diverse preferred medium of payment. So, in other not to limit the number of purchases made on your online store, ensure you have a diverse medium for payment so no matter what medium your customers prefer, you have it available. These can include regular card payments, Apple Pay, Paypal and more.

Offer Deals and Promotions from Time to Time
Giveaway prices are one way to show that you value and appreciate your customers. When customers feel valued and appreciated, they are more likely to become loyal customers and re-visit your site. Giveaway prices cab come in different forms depending on whichever method you prefer. It could be in the form of outright free gifts, or in the form of buy-one-get-one-free, or any other form you prefer.

Content Management Settings
Finally, it's important that your site has efficient content management settings so that your site is scalable and rich in content. This can also include logos, policies, banners, footer links and so on. There are a range of different CMS options to choose from, yet the ultimate aim in order to ensure that your quality score is of a sufficient level for search engines, your content should be up to scratch and SEO friendly.

By having the right tools and an efficient website builder, you'll be able to get your eCommerce store up and running in no time.

Top 5

BigCommerce provides intuitive and exciting tools to design and manage an online store.
Wix offers a wide selection of features to create a successful online storefront.
$100 Google Adwords credit
Sell products worldwide in 80+ currencies with automatic inventory tracking.
Volusion offers high quality, responsive templates suitable for any user.

Must Read