Just a few years ago setting up an e-commerce site was a serious undertaking requiring some significant resources and budget.
With the tools and techniques available to us today, setting up an e-commerce website has become infinitely easier meaning even as a one-man (or woman) band, you can rapidly launch a website and collect payment for products and services online.
Here are some tips that can help you get from start to finish inside of a week:
Be clear on your target customer
Make sure you are clear about exactly who your target customers are. The more specific the better. Many businesses make the mistake of trying to appeal to everyone which is a surefire way to make life hard for yourself as you start trying to attract customers.
Have high-quality images/product shots
The look and feel of your website can hugely impact the level of trust people place in your business. Images play a big part here regardless of whether you are selling a product or service.
Take the time to find images that don’t look too generic and reinforce rather than distract from your website copy.
Get help with copywriting
Of course, you can write your website copy yourself, but sharp copy crafted by an experienced wordsmith can make a big difference in strengthening your brand and helping with sales.
There’s an art to connecting a prospective buyer’s problem to the solution that you offer in a persuasive manner. Your website should do this in a clear and succinct way.
Pick your website platform and create account
You can of course employ someone to do a custom build but with platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce, you can launch something very quickly and cheaply. These make a great starting point and you can get a simple website live in a day!
Without analytics setup, you will have no idea whether anyone is visiting your website and if they are, what they are doing.
As a bare minimum, you need Google Analytics and Google Search Console installed. Both are free and just need a snippet of code installed on your site to make them work.
Think of the analytics as to the dashboard in your car. As well as revealing some basic information on the number of website visitors, they can offer a goldmine of information on what’s working and what isn’t.
Setup your social accounts
If you don’t already have them, you should have profiles set up for Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook. Try and secure your brand name as nowadays, social media presence forms an important part of your overall online visibility.
It’s an opportunity for you to connect with prospective customers where they hang out.
Setup Google ads
Google ads are a rapid way to advertise your services and drive people to your website. Your adverts appear when someone types a certain search that you choose into Google.
It’s free to set up an account and you only pay when someone clicks on your advert and visits your website.
Make some noise
The ‘build it and they will come’ philosophy does not work online. You need to work hard to increase the visibility of your website by writing blog content, sharing it in your social channels, guest posting to other websites and generally positioning your business as an expert.