The world we live in nowadays has been changed by the Internet. It has changed the communication among people, the way we get and share information, and even the way the business works. E-Commerce has opened doors to a lot bigger market than a regular one. With an estimated population of 7.8 billion people in the world, there is about 25 percent of the world’s population shopping online. Some surveys prove that this number is rising rapidly, which will exceed about 2.14 billion people in 2021.
To start with, e-Commerce is a shortened version for electronic commerce, which is actually online commerce. Another term to make it clear is an e-Commerce store – a store that sells products only of a single company, such as Timberland, for instance.
Types of e-Commerce
There are a few types of e-Commerce for businesses and people who want to work with online sales.
B2B or Business to Business. This type of e-Commerce is used to companies that create e-Commerces to sell products to other companies. For example, Printify. It is a transparent print on demand platform that makes it simple to work with print providers to fulfill and send companies’ products to their customers. If you want, you can learn more about print on demand benefits with Printify.
B2C or Business to Consumer is the model adopted by the companies that sell products to the end consumer. Adidas, Levis and Ugg are examples of B2C.
C2B or Consumer to Business is a model when a customer offers his services to the companies. For example, a freelancers platform as Upwork.com.
C2C or Consumer to Consumer – it bonds buyers on mostly marketplaces and forums, such as eBay, Etsy or AliExpress.
How to create eCommerce
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to create e-Commerce for dummies.
Buy a domain
When choosing a domain, it needs to be related to the product you’re going to sell on your e-Commerce store. Keep in mind that your name has to be simple and easily memorable. There are plenty of domain generators that help if you are struggling to come up with an idea yourself.
Looking at the competition is also great for getting inspiration. Though do not copy their name and keep everything original. Otherwise, you will have to deal with copyright laws later.
Choose an e-Commerce tool
If you don’t know how to code, just use online e-Commerce tools. Such services as Wix or Shopify and others offer creative solutions to establish your own online shop. Analyze those websites and choose which of them is the best for you. You can always ask for advice on the services and their advantages and disadvantages in e-Commerce groups on Facebook.
Select the payment method
You can set the payment options to your products on the e-Commerce tool, including direct deposit, PayPal or credit card, etc. It is very important to provide different payment methods to your customers to make their shopping experience easy and fun.
Choose the type of product: digital or physical
One of the most important steps in creating your e-Commerce is to decide what kind of product you are going to sell. It will affect the logistic and distribution stages later. Physical products are frequently sold because they dominate in many peoples’ lives. They are clothes, shoes, furniture, books, accessories, and so on. Talking about digital products that are distributed online, are usually ones of the educational type such as ebooks, software, online courses, online tools, etc.
When a customer buys a physical product from a store, he gets insecure about when his purchase will be delivered and if it will come at all. This doesn’t apply to digital products that you get instantly after purchasing them online. That’s why it is very challenging for the entrepreneur who owns e-Commerce, to find flawlessly running distribution logistics. You have to think about if there will be a stock to sell it if it is, then what amount of products you sell will be available there, or maybe you will decide to work with made-to-order products. The last decision to make about logistics is to select one of the shipping options you are going to use. Would it be USPS, UPS or FedEx, or an option to pick up the orders at the physical store, you have to decide.
E-Commerce on social media
With so many users on social media, Facebook or Instagram allows companies to create their e-Commerce on their platforms. The benefits of it are: it is free, it reaches a huge customer audience and it is very simple to follow the steps of purchase there.
Social media platforms are also great for marketing. You can cooperate with influencers, organize contests and giveaways, and slowly build your brand awareness. Keep in mind that word of mouth is very important nowadays. Customers are more likely to purchase from brands they already know, or have heard about from someone else.
Customers will not come to you on their own. You will have to market. Like mentioned in the previous paragraph, social media is great for attracting more shoppers. But a marketing campaign should not end with Facebook or Instagram.
Organic traffic is worth a lot since customers will reach your landing page after typing relevant keywords in search engines. Look to optimize your website for SEO.
PPC and email marketing methods are also valuable, though you will need to work on them a bit longer. Pay-per-click especially as there is a constant testing involved, trying to determine which keywords and ad copies are the most efficient.
Once the business picks up and you get some customers, do not neglect to provide them with the best possible experience. Reward your best customers with a loyalty program. Invest in customer support for a quick response time. A happy customer is the one that will return and spend money on your e-Commerce store.
If you decide to create an e-Commerce, this article about e-Commerce for dummies should really help you to take the first steps. Looking for eCommerce platforms that help you with everything? Click here to get one.