What Does it Take to Succeed in eCommerce in 2021?
What Does it Take to Succeed in eCommerce in 2021? You ask, this article will walk you through the concepts needed to answer this question. eCommerce isn't going anywhere. eCommerce sales skyrocketed to an all-time high during the 2020 pandemic, with nearly 150 million people shopping online for the first time, according to Shopify's Future of Ecommerce report. While the growth rate should slow as the economy rebounds, e-commerce’s share of global retail sales is expected to rise.
This meteoric growth represents a significant opportunity for entrepreneurs. However, building a successful eCommerce brand is far from easy in today's competitive landscape. Not only are countless brands competing for a slice of the eCommerce pie, but the dominance of eCommerce marketplaces and unbranded search makes it difficult for newcomers to make a name for themselves.
The Basics of Starting an Ecommerce Business
Before diving into customer acquisition costs, conversion rates, and other eCommerce metrics, budding entrepreneurs need to turn their eCommerce idea into a legitimate businesses.
- The first step to take is forming a legal business. Registering a limited liability company is simple enough to do yourself using guides like this one from ZenBusiness.com. If creating a C corporation or S corporation, talk to a business attorney.
- Ecommerce sellers need to understand how sales tax works. Sellers are responsible for filing sales tax returns in each state where they do business, but rates and rules vary from state to state.
- Vendor relationships are critical to any retail business's success. Choose vendors carefully, especially if using online suppliers. Product samples and references help you select quality suppliers.
The Key Elements of a Successful eCommerce Store
With these steps out of the way, you're ready to build your eCommerce business. But where do you start?
- On a personal level, make sure you have the habits and routines in place to support a growing business. Written for freelancers, startup tips from Work-from-Home Depot can assist many, but anyone building an online business will benefit from the productivity and success resources.
- Of course, every eCommerce business needs a well-designed website. An effective eCommerce website is easy to navigate and offers a frictionless checkout experience on desktop and mobile. If you don't want to spend hours tinkering only to end up with subpar results, let a web developer handle this for you.
- Don't limit yourself to one channel. Online shoppers prefer omnichannel experiences that let them do business wherever they choose. Amazon, eBay, Walmart, Wish, and Houzz are the leading marketplaces U.S. sellers should tap.
- Fast and free shipping is another priority for eCommerce consumers. That expectation is challenging for smaller brands to meet, but there are savvy ways to compete on fulfillment without cutting into profit margins.
How to Build a Profitable eCommerce Brand
Now you know how to meet consumer expectations. However, to last in the crowded eCommerce market, your brand needs to stand out.
- A customer’s experience doesn’t end with the purchase. A memorable unboxing experience is an excellent way to differentiate your eCommerce brand, not to mention a great source of user-generated content.
- eCommerce brands also need to deliver exceptional customer service to earn shoppers’ loyalty. Offer multiple ways to access support, including self-service tools, live chat, and social media.
- Speaking of loyalty: It’s cheaper to retain a customer than to acquire a new one. Luckily, it’s easy to make customer retention part of your eCommerce business’s strategy with loyalty program plugins.
Ecommerce is a great place to break into entrepreneurship, but operating a successful eCommerce business is harder than it looks. Online shoppers have their pick of competitors, and it takes more than a good product or a low price to earn their loyalty. To last in this competitive field, entrepreneurs need to think beyond the online store and build an eCommerce brand.
Need help designing an eCommerce store that reflects your brand? Contact Faith Web Designers to learn about Startup Ecommerce Packages. With custom design, complete integration, and prices starting as low as $1,324, it’s the perfect solution to your growing eCommerce business’s needs.