One does not become a store owner because it is easy. It is a constant struggle to answer, change, increase and adjust. If you are focusing solely on your conversion rate you might want to stop right away, as there are plenty more of details that need to be polished to perfection. Making mistakes is fine. Trying to avoid them completely is what will make you successful.
It seems that the list of useful advice that could help you create and run eCommerce website that is completely flawless, is: never-ending.
There is always something that needs adjusting, changing or removing, as you have to stay on the top of your game at all times.
That is why we prepared a list of things you may have forgotten to test and adjust.
As we mentioned, the list is never-ending, but for now, let’s take a look at some of the basic examples that need to be impeccable in order to run a successful eCommerce business.
In other words – if you are doing any of this – think of stopping right now.
Have in mind that some of the examples are related to the ways you sell, some refer to design and some of them relate simply to the way you are treating your customers and how you behave as a store owner or administrator.
Each and every one of them is important in its own way, and even though they belong to different categories, all of these details together are what will make your store stand out from the crowd and be successful.
Or – bring damage to your online business.
So, in no particular order, we bring you the list of important details that require special attention when running online store.
Go ahead, open your eCommerce website in a new tab, pour yourself a cup of coffee, and check if by any chance, you have made one of these mistakes.
It seems only right to start with what is in the back of your online store.
If you did your research you have probably found out that the more you customize your online store and make it your’s truly – the better!
1. Building your online store from scratch
Creating online store from scratch is coooompletely redundant.
Sure, you could do it if you have the skills and expertise but it will take a lot of time.
Can you imagine digging into lines and lines of code every time you need to change something?
It is a complete waste of time, especially when we are positive that by now you have your ears full of information about all kinds of platforms available out there.
Magento is what we know best, so we will use it as an example.
Even what seems to be a more complicated task meant for advanced users, is easily manageable from Administrator Panel.
You will realize that it absolutely saves time and relieves you from headaches.
That is why there is no reason you should get yourself head over heals with programming everything from scratch.
No matter how good you are.
At one point, when your orders start piling up and the number of products available on your store starts growing, it will simply stop being fun and you will find yourself googling “choosing between eCommerce platforms” and finding the easiest way to migrate.
Yes, someone did all the hard work – for you.
2. Failing to identify your niche properly
You might have been analytical and thorough when it comes to creating your product.
But unless what you decided to sell is something that special that the world have never seen it before, your product is destined to fail.
Do not rush your product.
Explore your target market well and create a business plan that will not fail you.
Do the math, explore your target group and then launch your online business.
It is almost impossible to start your brand new eCommerce store and expect it to be a relevant competitor to the giant online retailers.
That is why you should target specific customers and get to know them well, acquire relevant data and determine the right marketing channel for product promotion.
3. Your website not appearing to be trustworthy
Talking about your eCommerce store in general, before we get to the details, one of the most important things is – your website has to appear to be trustworthy.
It is a place that will have all the details about your customers’ orders, credit card details, shipping and billing addresses.
And these are all data that need to be stored safely.
Using secure badges is a great way to visually convey to your customers that their data is safe with you.
So, if your website appears to belong in mid nineties in terms of design and usability, it will appear sketchy and your potential customers will be reluctant to buy.
On the other hand, you can easily over do it.
As a store owner you have to have in mind that your eCommerce business is not suppose to be a piece of art.
By all means you should have a compelling design!
But be careful and don’t let yourself get distracted and turn it into a piece of art that is hard to navigate or even simply – to look at.
4. Non-existing or poor product description
Your product copy should be crafted skilfully as it is, alongside photo, something that will give the best representation of your product’s functionalities.
But, don’t forget, that is not enough. It is not exaggerated to say that you should think of it as several lines of the most important content you will ever write.
Buzz words and loads of adjectives simply won’t cut it. Be precise, exact and fun.
If your product gives you enough space to do so. If not, stick to what your customers will consider valuable.
That is the closest they will get to your product until the moment comes to unbox the whole thing.
5. Low quality photography
We said it so many times, and we will say it again.
Your product photography has to be impeccable, otherwise it will be really hard for your customers to make a decision to purchase.
Show them everything – zippers, seams, available colours, pockets and buttons.
Here is a great example:
With so many tools available online, it is more than easy to create amazing images.
We suggest you try some of services out there – Picture Perfect for example!
Anything that will help your pictures be more clear and bright.
Finding out ways to improve your photography skills or sources is a must when running an online store.
So, whether you decide to turn to a professional or learn the trade by yourself it doesn’t really matter – as long as the end result is a great product photography.
Adobe’s amazing Lightroom is easy to use and gives great results.
Try editing your photography with it and you will be surprised with the results.
6. Poor URL structure
You might think it is irrelevant and that no one is going to notice either way, but be sure that poor url structure WILL damage your online store.
And for several reasons.
First and foremost, your store’s SEO will be damaged.
And that is something you cannot afford.
You want (and need) to offer relevant keywords to search engines so that your page could be highly ranked.
Even now, when Google for example, decided not to pay much attention to it – keywords in url structure will not bring damage to your eCommerce site.
When your customers are searching for a product, the first thing they will see is url and that is why it is best if you to try and make it as readable as you can.
Here is what happens:
The closer keywords are to the domain name, the better.
Always avoid generating them automatically and make sure you don’t use random numbers/letters/words as part of your url.
And don’t think this should be applied to your online store only.
If you are an avid blogger for your eCommerce business, make sure your blog post’s urls are polished to perfection.
Here is an example of a great url:
And a bad one…
If you are running Magento store make sure you check out our tutorial and create nice urls for your online store.
7. Bad site search
How many times have you found yourself trying to figure out where to search for a product on online store?
Have you thought instantly what would be the better solution, even if you may not be a professional but just an ordinary user trying to manage their way through the jungle of products, categories and special offer items?
You most certainly have.
Now, if you are a store owner, you might know what you like, or what works visually, but you’re not thinking clearly about what would be the most useful option.
And you should, because statistics show that visitors who use site search are more likely to purchase online.
Finding Waldo might seem as a fun pastime, but when it comes to your online business, you simply cannot risk similar situation.
Be careful and make sure you decide in advance whether you will ensure that your site has impeccable categories or great site search.
Meaning – you should not implement things like search on your store just because someone else did it.
Always think of your customers, do you research and then – decide.
8. Not allowing guest checkout
Time is an asset that online shoppers often miss.
But, even with plenty of hours to spend browsing favourite products online available, they will always be reluctant to spend it shifting through tabs providing you with their mobile telephone number.
Making customers fill out redundant fields will make them abandon their shopping carts, and eventually increase your loss.
Of course, the ideal scenario would be the one where all of your buyers have an account, but if that is not the case, make sure you always allow guest checkout.
Samsung is a great example of how easy checkout can be:
Online shoppers are perpetually in a hurry so let them finish their shopping in just a matter of seconds – it will mean a lot to both parties involved.
9. Not caring about your content
The best case scenario is – you love writing and you are good at it.
But if you hate the very notion of creating content for your eCommerce blog and you are unable to hire someone to do it for you – here are some tools that you might find helpful.
Firstly, you will need great topics.
If you have trouble generating them, you need to reserve couple of hours and dedicate them exclusively to brainstorming your topics.
You can use Portent Title Generator, fun and useful tool that we believe will help you a lot.
Once you have your topics you will need to explore relevant keywords.
Yes, there is a tool to help you do that. We suggest using Soovle.
It will help you determine keywords relevant for your niche and make you feel confident about the relevancy of the content you are creating.
Finally, you should check your grammar and readability.
We wrote earlier on how useful Hemingway App is, and now we present two more tools that you will bookmark right away.
Grammarly is an amazing tool that will solve your dilemmas when it comes to grammar and help you enhance your vocabulary.
And what’s great – it is made by experts that gave it to online world completely for free!
Checking your readability will be easier with the Readability test tool.
Once you are done with your article, simply enter your URL and tweak your copy according to the results.
In the end, it is all about your willingness to dedicate yourself to writing.
It can only get better in time, and positive impact that it has on your eCommerce business will only encourage you to keep doing it.
10. Not creating convincing Click Through landing page
Or not creating one at all.
Creating a compelling and effective click through landing page is crucial for your eCommerce business as you want them to click through the page and end up in a place on your store where the actual conversion will take place.
Have in mind that you shouldn’t be worried about getting your customers emails at this point, as you do not want to create opt in page.
Instead focus on creating a page that will correspond with your ad.
Create CTA that your customers will spot easily, add social proof to make your message even stronger and prepare them to buy.
Make sure you do not direct them straight to shopping cart as that might seem confusing and make your customers leave right away causing you a bounce rate induced headache.
Also, make sure your decisions are based on facts.
Use heat maps and define your visitors behaviour, and adjust your page accordingly.
We suggest a great tool – Lucky Orange!
To sum up..
In order for your eCommerce business to be successful you have to be extremely detail oriented.
Of course, your product and your online store are what matters the most, but landing page will take your customers to your product, your blog will make your customers appreciate your advice and your social media presence will make your customers engage with you, share and remember you.
So, make sure you are on top of your game when it comes to running an online store and never neglect any of its important elements.