When you speak about the fundamentals of e-commerce, it all sounds so simple. Just know what you’re going to sell, post your merchandise on a website, and that’s all there is to it. But that’s not exactly how it goes. To really build a successful e-commerce business, it takes a lot of hard work and upfront investments not only to get started, but to maintain and upgrade it regularly. There is so much to know about selling on your website, but here are some beginning basics to know.
1. Website Design
It all starts with website design because that is what your visitors see. The good news is that there are website builder services out there that let you use pre-designed templates, or even let you create your own. You don’t need to know how to code necessarily because many of these website builders automatically have it as a part of their graphic interface. However, you should make sure that your website design is mobile friendly because many people today use mobile devices for e-commerce. If you do need to have coding done, you can hire a freelancer to do it for you for an inexpensive price.
2. Website Hosting
Even more important than design is choosing the right server to host your website. You can go with a shared server, which is usually a cloud-based web server in an environment in which multiple websites are sharing resources. Or you could go with a dedicated server like the one Magento 2 Cloud offers. A dedicated web server will offer you a lot more space, much higher speeds, and higher traffic volumes than a shared space solution. But it is also a lot more expensive than a shared server. Services like Magento 2 Cloud allow you to buy cloud space that matches what your website needs will be in terms of traffic and overall size. But note that your business will attract a lot more customers if your website loads quickly and has less lag on it. Slower websites can really ruin the customer experience.
3. Online Payment Processing
Not all online merchant services are the same, especially when it comes to online payment processing. The way your checkout page is setup should be easy for customers to get through, have a quick payment processing system, and also allow for multiple payment methods. Unfortunately, many payment processors have loading issues and also have troubling security flaws. So when you choose a payment processor and create your checkout portal, you need to make sure you’ve chosen a highly reliable one who values customer security.
4. SEO And Other Marketing
The most fundamental part of selling anything from your website is making sure people are aware of it to begin with, and furthermore are driven to buy your products. That is the foundation of digital marketing which now means just about anything from video ads, to social media, and now even mobile marketing. But search engine optimization (SEO) is still at the heart of most digital marketing strategies because people are more likely to find e-commerce websites through organic search results.
SEO is mostly about designing your website in ways to make search engines find it appealing, having the right keywords in your content and link building. But it can entail some paid search marketing where your website can be found through ads that you pay-per-click for, and it can be listed at the top of the search engine listing in an ad space area. PPC marketing can cost a little to get results, but it’s worth it if you get higher traffic and generate more sales.
5. Brand Building
While it is a part of marketing your website to potential customers, building a brand for your e-commerce website involves more than that. What you’re doing is defining it not just by what you sell, but what your customer experience and business values are like. Brand building can involve things like logo creation, slogans, videos showing what your business does, and so much more.
Getting started selling on your website takes time, but when you use tools and resources such as those offered by Magento 2 Cloud, you’ll have a more effective system for it. Always remember that your website’s interface and your SEO strategy will need to be constantly updated to match customer demands, search engine algorithms, and data security.