Did you know that 90 percent of online businesses fail within their first four months? Starting an online business has the potential to make you extremely wealthy, and being a member of the e-commerce industry means that you can work on your own terms. You can run your business the way you want, and you can work the way you want without someone looking over your shoulder and telling you what to do. It all sounds great until you realize that selling products online is actually an extremely difficult thing to do because the competition is so intense. No matter what industry you operate in, you’re going to have competitors – and it may be a long time before your business makes any money at all.
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Running an online business isn’t easy, but every successful online entrepreneur was new to the industry at one point. Being successful in e-commerce is simply a matter of having a solid business plan and executing it – and this guide is going to help you get started. In it, we’re going to present a roadmap that can help you build a successful online business from nothing. Here’s how to do it.
Know Your Market
Before you can even start to think about selling products online, you need to know what you’re going to sell and who your competitors will be. You need to know whether you’ll actually have a chance to break through the static and get noticed – and when people do visit your site, you should have a one-sentence answer to the question of why people should buy from you instead of your more well-established competitors. You need to know all of these things because if you don’t have a plan for competing, you’re doomed before you even begin.
Remember that although you may be interested in or passionate about a particular industry, it doesn’t mean that you should necessarily own a business in that industry. The competition may be so intense that you won’t have a chance to break through unless you have an enormous promotional budget. Look for an industry that gives you a realistic opportunity to compete.
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Choose a Catchy Domain Name
When you run an online company, your domain name needs to match the name of your business – and it needs to be a good one. Your domain name should be short and easy to remember. It should be something that people will know how to spell immediately if they hear about it from friends or on the radio. It should also be short enough that people will remember it after seeing an advertisement.
Choosing a good domain name for an online business is difficult because when you begin searching for available domains, you’ll probably find that most of your favorite ideas are already taken – there are over 350 million registered domains today. It’s worthwhile to invest a lot of time into this aspect of developing your business, though, because all of the most successful online businesses have unforgettable domain names.
Invest in a Good Web Developer
Web hosting companies often try to rope new customers in by offering ready-made e-commerce packages. They’ll tell you that all you need to do is add your products to a template, and customers will come flocking to your site. The truth is, though, that selling products online doesn’t actually work that way in the real world – and if your website looks like an off-the-shelf template, people will probably decide to spend their money elsewhere.
Before you launch your website, search for the keywords for which you would like your site to rank well. Look at the sites that appear in the results for that search and ask yourself where you’d want to spend your money as a consumer. Your site needs to look at least as good as your competitors’ sites, and that means you’ll probably need to enlist the services of a web developer. Developers aren’t cheap, but this is one of the best investments you can make as an online business owner.
Sell the Products Your Customers Want to Buy
Choosing your industry is just one aspect of being a successful online business owner. You’ll also need to select the specific products that you’re going to sell – and in almost every industry, you’ll have no shortage of options. To find out what consumers in your industry are buying, it’s worthwhile to spend some time on Reddit and other discussion boards and find out what products people are talking about. If a product is generating a healthy volume of discussion – like the Firerose vape is in the vaping industry, for example – there’s a good chance that it’s worth carrying.
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Fill Your Website with Helpful Content
If you want people to find your website online, it needs to show up on Google’s search results pages – and that’s not going to happen if your website is nothing but a list of products. Google primarily runs on text. People use text phrases to search for things, and Google returns results with text that seems to satisfy those queries. So, if you want your site to show up for a wide variety of different search terms, you need to have text on your site that satisfies those search terms. When you create your site’s content, you should focus on these three areas.
- Product Content: Your product pages are the most important pages on your site because when people search for specific products, it’s highly likely that they’re considering buying those products. Every product page on your site should have original, helpful text that describes the product and explains why someone might want to buy it.
- Category Page Content: Your website will use categories for product organization, and every product will fit into at least one category. A box of spaghetti, for example, might fit into a category called “Pasta.” On an even larger website, “Pasta” might be a subcategory in a broader category called “Food.” Category pages usually represent broad ideas, and the search terms relating to those ideas tend to receive a lot of monthly search volume. In order for your site to show up for those broad search terms, every category page on your site should have a text introduction that helps people find what they want.
- Blog Content: Although the product and category pages will always be the most important pages on any e-commerce site, it’s also wise to have a blog. While product and category pages give you a chance to rank for commercial search terms, blog posts tend to be informational in nature – and informational search terms also receive a great deal of traffic. When developing content for your blog, you should try to come up with article topics that can help people have a better experience with the types of products offered on your site.
Source: Cosmo Politian