How to Start an Online Store
Thinking about jumping into the eCommerce but not sure where to start? This video offers information and insights to help you create an online store that drives traffic and boosts sales. Today’s technology makes it incredibly easy to launch an eCommerce website. User-friendly, affordable all-in-one site builders, such as GoDaddy’s Online Store, provide customizable themes, drag-and-drop tools, and all the features you need to tap into the massive worldwide marketplace. But if you don’t want to build it yourself or you want a highly customized or complex site, there are professionals who can build it for you, like the experts at GoDaddy’s Web Store Design Service. Whether you build it yourself or hire a pro, some thorough upfront planning will take you a long way toward a successful grand opening and future profitability. Start by checking out what your competitors are doing. Visit their online stores and take a good look around. Make notes about what you like and don’t like. Then make a plan. To help you get started, consider these questions: How do I want my store to look and feel? Professional, whimsical, sophisticated, eclectic? If you use a DIY tool like GoDaddy’s Online Store, you can choose from a host of themes that let you fine tune your store’s overall appearance. If you use a professional design service, well the sky’s the limit. What types of payment will I accept? Credit card, debit card, PayPal, cash on delivery? Most eCommerce sites include an online payment method so that customers can complete their purchase while on the site. Transaction security is critical, so make sure your store has it. GoDaddy’s Online Store comes with secure checkout to protect your customers. What shipping method should I use? Weight-based, flat-rate or free? Do I want to ship internationally? Offering your customers the right shipping methods can decrease shopping cart abandonment and increase sales. Do I need to charge sales tax? This is a question for your accountant. Be sure you ask. How high-quality do my product photos need to be? What product information and specifications do I need to include? When selling online, there is no such thing as photos that are too clear or product information that’s too detailed. Should I offer promotions or coupons? The right answer is “Yes”! Discounts on products and shipping are a great way to entice, reward, and retain customers. How will I provide customer service? Email, phone, online form? When customers reach out, make sure you or an employee reaches back as quickly as possible. Clearly posting your refund policy and terms of service may reduce your customer service load. Do I need a review feature on my store? It’s a good idea. Research shows that people regard online customer reviews as highly as they do word-of-mouth recommendations. And a review feature right on your site makes it easy to quickly deal with any negative reviews. Finally, your online store can increase your sales quickly and dramatically, so be sure you have a solid process in place for fulfilling orders and managing inventory. With a little planning and the right resources, launching and running your online store can be a fun and highly profitable venture.
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