The number of people shopping online is increasing daily as it is convenient to do it from anywhere. Even if you have a brick and mortar store, building an online store needs to be part of your business goals. Additionally, e-commerce is an affordable and viable option to reach a global audience.
Ecommerce website development can be hard without proper guidance. But that is where we come in. We will show you the steps to build a decent custom e-commerce site that doesn’t require a lot of money, time or technical knowledge if you are starting out – or enterprise solutions for established companies.
Here’s how you go about it.
1. Determine your E-commerce Business Model
Several types of e-commerce business models exist, yet the two principle categories are business to business (B2B) and business to consumer (B2C). Knowing the difference — and knowing where your e-commerce business falls — is significant.
Business to consumer (B2C)
The main part of online shops we interact with are business to consumer (B2C). Whether it’s Amazon, Zappos, or Target, whenever we hit that checkout button, we’ve completed an exchange on a B2C website. Items or services on a B2C website are offered directly from businesses to the general public, with no outsiders getting involved.
Business to business (B2B)
Business to business (or B2B) are, as the name suggests, businesses that sell to other businesses. These are companies that may manufacture something, are a wholesaler, or provide services and items inside a given industry.
2. Come up With a Good Business Name
Try to avoid cliches and don’t name your business something very similar to competitors. For example – if your business name is ‘beautylove’ there better not be another business called ‘lovebeauty’ in the market.
Brevity in choosing a business name will do you a world of good. Especially, when your business is online you don’t want to make it longer than two words. The best brands in the world with easy recall are single words – ‘Google. Yahoo, Apple, Etsy etc. People want brands that are easy to remember.
Make it memorable – Everyone loves a hint of quirky. Names that are bland and do not have a stickiness to them are not likely to become a brand no matter how great their products are.
Mailchimp, CeX and Sprout Social are all memorable names because they are different.
3. Register your Domain Name
So, you have finally decided on a name. Don’t lose time and register a domain name. Domain names are here today and gone tomorrow and a lot can change in a matter of few hours. Apart from the fact there are millions of people scouring the internet searching for the perfect domain name at any given time, there are also unethical predators who squat on domain names that sound profitable by immediately registering them and offering for sale back to you at exorbitant prices.
We suggest that you don’t take any chances and register your desired domain at the earliest.
Here are some tips that you should keep in mind:
a. Do not include an existing brand name of another business in your URL as it can cause legal hassles
b. If you selling only for a specific country, then it makes sense to get that country code extension in your domain name otherwise a .com extension is the best.
c. Use a keyword if possible, in your domain name if you do not have a massive budget for SEO and there will be stiff competition in your sector. This will send signals to a search engine about what your website is about even without an online history.
d. Make your website name unique but not too weird or hard to pronounce.
4. Find the Right Ecommerce Platform
There are numerous e-commerce web design platforms in the market that are as easy as drag and drop.
Choose one that suits your needs and do due diligence before buying one. There are lots of online forums where you can learn about these tools and get feedback from real users instead of paid reviewers or affiliate marketers.
The better known platforms include: Shopify, BigCommerce, VTEX and Magento.
Some of the must-have features that you need to keep in mind are:
Your website should be device-agnostic and should be visible on all gadgets such as mobile devices and tablets.
Content Management System
Needs to update and edit dynamic content
Shopping cart has to be customisable
It should be able to accept multiple payments from different vendors such as Google Pay, Adyen, Stripe, PayPal and more.
Your checkout page should be customisable and modifiable.
Alternatively, hire a developer or experienced development team to build your website from scratch. While this is the more time-consuming option, the end result may be a better fit with the option to revise and tweak bugs faster with more confidence.
Irrespective of the route you choose, make sure to have clarity on the kind of store you want to build. This will help to answer the question of which builder to choose.
5. Obtain a Payment Gateway
While this might seem obvious for an e-commerce store with a shopping cart, you need a payment gateway without which it will not be possible to accept credit card payments on your store.
Getting approved for a payment gateway and credit card processor can take some time so you need to do your research. You’ll also need to share details such as email address and working customer number. You’ll also need a good credit history.
Make sure that your website has adequate security measures such as SSL so that customers don’t have to worry about sharing their private details online during the checkout process.
6. Order Packaging and Figure Out Shipping & Storage
As a final step, you’ll need to know where to store your inventory and how to ship it out. Will you doing drop shipping or will you be doing regular shipping? Which courier services will you be using to ship? Are there shipping restrictions on any of the products you are shipping?
Think of the answers to all these questions before you ship out any products.
And of course, last but not least, you will need to consider how you will reach your potential customers, through an in-house team managing your PPC advertising or with the help of a specialist online shopping management agency
Ecommerce has provided new opportunities to everyone to reach out and experience huge growth. Grab this opportunity and make the most of it today!
The Diginius team provides enterprise solutions for established businesses using almost 20 years of experience and expertise in PPC management developing E-commerce websites, Insight software and automated bidding engines to help clients maximise the value and return generated from their PPC activity.
So, to find out how we can help you do the same, get in touch today.