Ecommerce Web Design: Considerations When Setting Up Your Online Store

Posted by Carol on 5/09/19 1:24 PM

So, you’ve decided to begin selling your products via an online store. Congratulations! It’s a big step, but you’re about to expose your products to a much wider audience than you ever could if you stuck to a traditional “bricks and mortar” approach.

In fact, it’s now possible to build an amazing, substantial business from pretty much anywhere, and you don’t have to look hard to find local success stories. Take “Grace Loves Lace”, a small bridal dress boutique that began in 2011, but now employs over 50 people and exports to over 50 countries from its base on the Gold Coast on the back of a stunningly successful eCommerce marketing strategy.

But the steps between deciding to set up an online store and having a thriving business are numerous and littered with potential stumbling blocks. We’ve set out some of the most common right here so you can sidestep them on your way to building a world-class eCommerce website.

Platform Choice

Building an eCommerce website in Australia used to be a lot more arduous than it is today. Now, there are a whole range of “plug and play” eCommerce website platforms on offer that will take care of all of the most complex back-end coding and tasks, leaving you free to develop your offering and eCommerce marketing strategy to attract customers.

But there are some considerations that you should use to assess your options:

1. Ease of use – don’t believe the marketing hype or recommendations. Whatever eCommerce platform you choose has to be one that you find easy to navigate, use, and work with. As a marketing manager or business owner, you will have plenty of interaction with this website builder, so make sure you are comfortable with what’s on offer.

2. Support – every eCommerce website builder looks great in theory, but you want to know what happens when things start to malfunction. It can be well worth paying a little more per month if that extra fee includes premium support services. This is especially valuable for first-time online store builders. More popular platforms will also have plenty of video tutorials and comprehensive FAQ sections to help you along.

3. Limits – typically, there are several tiers to eCommerce website platforms. The free tier is usually very limited when it comes to how many products it will allow you to upload at any one time. If you are a lower margin, higher volume business, the number of listings permitted per tier will be especially important to you.

4. Fees – though it is improving, the fees on eCommerce platforms can still be hard to compare across sites. That’s because there are no industry standards for pricing. Some will charge an “all-in” fee for all services (typically the most expensive) while other options will be cheaper, but charge multiple times for transaction processing, premium support, or other upgrades.

The experience is a little like the choice between flying with a full-service airline or a budget carrier – you need to compare carefully what you’re getting to figure out whether it’s a good deal to go with the cheaper option, or, if after all the add-ons, whether you’d be better off going with the premium choice.

5. Mechanics – inventory management and shipping are two things that few online store owners think about in advance, but quickly find to be the biggest pain points in their business. Sophisticated online store builders will provide in-built native tools to print labels and manage inventory levels. Others will allow plug-ins that integrate with the eCommerce website platform. Either way, you are likely going to want a solution that automates the process and doesn’t leave you manually doing these tasks on a spreadsheet.

Building A Customer Base

Once you’ve got all of these decisions made and your store is up and running, you’ll want to think about ways to attract customers to your eCommerce store. After that, it’s a matter of providing such a good “in-store” experience that you get as many of these browsers as possible to convert into paying customers. And the final step in the process is to stay in touch with these customers, make them feel valued, and turn them into repeat customers and in the best-case scenario, advocates for your brand.

But the steps between deciding to set up an online store and having a thriving business are numerous and littered with potential stumbling blocks. We’ve set out some of the most common right here so you can sidestep them on your way to building a world-class eCommerce website.

Topics: eCommerce

X
Free Guide

Guide to eCommerce Marketing in Australia

Download our eCommerce Marketing Strategy Template here

LEARN MORE