11 Must Know Ecommerce Website Lessons

Paul our Marketing Director gives us an insight into the dos and dont’s when setting up shop online… 

It was back in 2009 when I started setting up a furniture website for home delivery. Three years later and i’d made the decision to move from retailer to digital marketer. Building my own e-commerce business and working with our clients on theirs has taught me many valuable lessons about running an e-commerce website.

1

The importance of having a unique trading name (and trademarking it!)

2

Get all of your ‘online real estate’ straight away. At the least registering both the .co.uk and .com domain names are a must in my opinion. Setup accounts for your brand on all of the social media platforms that are out there, even if you don’t plan on using them right now. You never know what platform will be popular next week, month or year.

3

Is setting up your own website the best way to go? Don’t be too hasty in overlooking setting up an Amazon Storefront, Ebay Shop, Etsy Shop (gotta love Etsy UK!) or other seller accounts. Promoting your own website can be a long and expensive task, why not avoid some of the hassle by joining with one of these big brands. This brings me on to my next point…

4

The old saying “Build it and they will come” does not apply to new websites in my experience! A more accurate saying would be – “Build it, do some SEO and produce some quality content, run some advertising campaigns. They will come but they might not make a purchase. Review your data and refine your appeals and call to actions. Repeat.”

5

Future proof your website. There is nothing worse than picking a CMS that cannot be easily upgraded with features you want or need… or one that stops being updated altogether… trust me! When the first version of my ecommerce website went online, SEO was a fairly new industry and responsive websites were not even around. You can’t go wrong with WordPress in my opinion (this CMS is used by 26.6% of all the websites in the world), it has tonnes of useful features straight out of the box as well as a huge choice of plugins – Give us a shout if you want a WordPress website setup, we’ll be happy to help.

6

Keep SEO in mind when producing website content. Always start by deciding what products/services you most want to rank (and get found for) in the search engine results pages.

7

Avoid ‘Black Hat’ SEO as you would a joyride on a rocket – rising fast up the search engine rankings may be great for a while but at some point you will come crashing back down to earth with a thump. Instead aim for quality content and utilise SEO practices recommended by Google.

8

Focus on ROI! It may sound obvious but it is so easy to get caught up in counting clicks/visits/likes/follows; at the end of the day it is sales and profits that matter most for an ecommerce business.

9

Have a mission, be ‘about something’ and have a reason to exist. Define your mission early on so that you can promote your unique selling points. Communicate a reason for the public to choose your online store over all the others out there.

10

Setup goals, funnels, ecommerce tracking and more in your analytics. Use this data to make informed decisions about the road ahead.

11

Be genuine and most importantly enjoy what you do. Life is too short to do something you are not passionate about and running an online business will take up a lot of your time. If you can, align your brand mission, values and image with your own goals, beliefs and personality… In my own experience this takes the ‘work’ aspect out of running a business.

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