In this article, we will talk about how to create a successful online store and the elements that must be considered to complete an online sales project. Creating an online store should not be a headache, today many useful tools can help you set up, create, and manage your online store.
What is an online shop?
An online store is a platform that uses the Internet either through an application or a page where you will offer and sell the products that your company or business wants to sell.
Your online store must give its visitors relevant and useful information about your products or services, have a stable and well-designed technological platform, and must be very explanatory both products offered and of the steps that must be taken for the visitor to do a successful purchase at the end of the process.
Elements to create an Online Store.
1# Appearance to create your Online Store
When making purchases on the Internet, users look for the security, tranquility, and support of a brand and that it provides a product appropriate to their needs and budget; For this reason, the appearance (Look and Feel) must be consistent with the type of sale that you want to make, that it respects the best standards of web design and above all that it shows in an organized and clean way the products or services to be offered.
2# Catalog of Products or Services to create an Online Store
As is logical, a catalog is a complete list of the products and services that are offered, it must be clean, clear, and organized by categories so that the user clearly understands what is offered and the characteristics of each element.
Your Product catalog must have the following characteristics:
- Be complete: There should be no missing element of your products or services to offer.
- Be up-to-date: Always up-to-date and with sufficient inventory and up-to-date to meet demand.
- You must have the latest version of your product in stock and if there are similar products, but of different versions or years, it must be differentiated.
- It must include the physical characteristics of each element: dimensions, colors, material, and characteristics of use. For example, if it is waterproof, it is suitable for outdoors, it resists humidity, it can be close to heat, etc.
3# Product or Category Explorer
A clear product guide, which is divided into sections and can be filtered by price, quantity, volume, or categories is a necessary element of an online store. If the user does not see the possibility of navigating between options or the product filtering system is simply deficient, you will lose the opportunity to show all the available options, and probably the visitor’s shopping experience will be affected by not being able to see the available options.
4# Explanation and Characteristics of the Products
A visitor who obtains complete information about a product, who can see the product from various angles, planes, who sees product use options and who clearly understands the uses, characteristics and above all who manages to understand the value proposition of the offered pro1duct will tend to buy more in you online store. It is essential to describe with clear, certain, and precise details the benefits of the product offered, and to create your online store, it is an indispensable requirement.
Some elements to consider when displaying your product:
- The clarity in the dimensions of the Product. Height, width, storage space, usage space, etc.
- The clarity in the ways of using the Product. How it is used, what is needed to use it, how it is maintained etc.
- The clarity in the risks of the Product. If it is toxic, it can generate electric shock, if it can be used by minors, if it has sharp elements, etc.
- Well-dimensioned photographs and from various angles of the product: Many times, the quality of the image of the product to be offered is simply not adequate for the customer, poor image quality is a bad product presentation label and the visual part is essential importance for the user to understand and “fall in love” with the product.
- Regulatory Part: If the regulation of the use of the product applies according to the part where the product is sold or located.
5# Payment system
A payment system that is easy, of course, that uses web security protocols and best web practices will be essential, a bad payment experience can be the difference between a successful business and a last-minute bounce in the purchase.
Characteristics of a payment system for an Online Store:
- It should include a secure HTTPS address, hopefully, verified.
- It must offer multiple online payment channels: direct bank debit, bank transfer, purchase with a credit card, and if possible new forms of payment such as apple pay, prepaid card, PayPal, etc.
- It must have a fixed mechanism for physical payments. If a user does not have electronic options, it is necessary to create a path to facilitate payments such as bank correspondents, physical consignment in banks, or money transfer services, increasing your potential customer base.
6# Site security elements to create an Online Store
Elements to consider regarding the security of your online store.
- Use safe addresses where possible. (HTTPS)
- Use DNS protection to prevent information leaks.
- Use anti-fraud, anti-spam, and anti-phishing software.
- Use if possible 2-factor authentication for mega store users and those who administer.
- All the security elements that serve to maintain a safe, fast site and above all that generate trust for the user will be essential.
7# Social networks applied to the purchase including a comment system
In these times even an online purchase becomes a social event. No agglomeration; but to share. Many times, a recommendation, an idea, or a simple reference is the initial step to put your product in the mind of a potential client.
That is why it is essential that the user who buys and who feels satisfied with what he obtained, can share that experience.
In the same way, when a user has a bad shopping experience, it is your opportunity to understand the reason for their complaint, respond to it, and increase your brand value by demonstrating that said dissatisfied user had a response and their disagreement was resolved. In fact, responding to a complaint is more important than responding to a recommendation.
Keeping rating systems, observations and open communication channels will help you not only to generate more users but also to monitor what you are doing right or wrong with your users.
8# Promotions System to create your Online Store
The notion of discount is important, when you have excess inventory, you have achieved a good price from your supplier or you simply want to boost your sales, a system of promotions and discounts will be essential.
- The promotions must be real, fair, and measurable. It is really to give an incentive to the customer (who in fact will look for different options) to make a good purchase decision.
- Promotions must have a start and end date or end-of-stock clarification.
- Promotions must be consistent with other product lines: If you are not consistent in promotions, you may risk cannibalizing your sales.
- Promoting is not giving away. Reviewing costs is essential to maintain a constant cash flow and not lose in business. Always consider the total cost including delivery logistics and technology expenses.
Another alternative is to use proven platforms that can help you create an online store, an example is Zyro, a company dedicated to setting up or managing your online store.
Although technology has advanced a lot, it is still important to take a good look at the hosting service of your Online Store.
Take these three factors into account:
- Loading speed. The time it takes for your store to show itself to a customer. Free tools like Google’s page speed or GTMetrix can be used to find out if your site is fast.
- Always keep your store with the most up-to-date version of the software for your teams regardless of the operating system used and the CMS or content management platform used.
- Have a sufficient infrastructure to support the flow of users and information. The hardware is also important and considering elements such as the capacity of the hard disk and storage, the speed of the processors, and the RAM of the servers will be essential for the technological stability of your business.
10# Registration, Customer Information, and Data management
If your technology allows it, a complete customer tracking system with the option of registration is desirable. Personalization can become a fundamental factor in the user’s shopping experience and have accurate and up-to-date information from your customers can help you identify purchase patterns and user preferences without the need for complicated market studies.
- Customer information must be treated under the most complete standards of security and information management according to the laws applicable to each country.
- The entrance of the client should not be a problem, easy and simple access with security is desirable, but it does not become a barrier to the purchase. Password storage systems, easy password remembering, and, above all, ease of navigation are essential so that your registration does not become a hindrance for the client.
- If you have an email system, it is essential to send a newsletter or promotions regularly, but without being invasive or repetitive. Within the registration form, you must have the option of sending emails activated to not send spam.
- Do not capture irrelevant information.
11# Mobile notification systems and web apps to create an Online Store
Going into the details a bit, a PUSH notification system can become a differentiating element of your online store. The messages of offers, news, and new products that reach the customer’s cell phone directly can become an important competitive advantage over other options.
Capturing clicks through direct user interaction with their cell phone can be a valuable tool in capturing casual and opportunity sales.
That your online store can be converted into a web app (basically that it works as an application on your cell phone) will also help a better customer experience and, above all, facilitate quick access to the products on offer.
12# Recommendations that are sometimes not noticed, but are important to create an Online Store
- The technology is invented, created from 0 can be a problem, you have to use the tools that the market for the assembly of online platforms, models, predesigns, services, etc. There is no need to invent along the way.
- The look and feel of the store are essential but do not fall into the design trap without understanding that functionality, ease of use, and payment are just as or more important. It is not only the visual, but also the overall operation of the elements that we have presented to you.
- Your brand is the most important thing, if the Store is not complete and working well it does not make sense to sacrifice the value of your brand with a bad sales platform. Work hard and constant but looking for quality in the final product and a professional store that adds value to your brand.
- Do not get overwhelmed when creating the Store, go step by step, set up with quality and a logical north, and above all taking the time to detail each part of the process will be essential to achieve the desired success if setting up a physical Store requires patience, dedication, and detail, do not assume that with the Internet it will be different. The quality of work and perseverance will make a difference.
- Teamwork is essential. Coordinating with providers, hosting services, web designers, web developers, web services, delivery logistics services, and even interacting with your clients to resolve conflicts and resolve difficulties is the way. Consistent and good work can only be achieved with a well-focused, coordinated, and assembled work structure.
- Resilience: You cannot assume that success will come without sacrifices and perseverance, web and brand positioning is not immediate and thinking of quick results without constant sacrifices is a utopia. You must show strength and understand that it will not be an easy process, without risks or difficulties.
- Avoid these 8 Critical eCommerce Mistakes When Selling Online.
There are many more elements to consider when setting up your online store, I hope this brief review will serve to better protect your online store project, I wish you many sales and many successes.