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Turn a Dream into Profit by Selling Online

5-05-2014, 11:35
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As technology continues to tighten its grip on societies around the world, it is now quickly becoming an important tool for business users to rely on. Technology can benefit business owners in many different ways from helping speed up the process of completing daily tasks to creating a smoother production line for goods. Another important aspect of technology for today’s business owner is the Internet. Business owners who have not already done so may want to consider creating an eCommerce branch of their company.


The Advantages of an Online Store

As with anything in the business world, companies must consider how their next step will benefit their company now and in the future. In terms of eCommerce, there are many advantages to opening an online store, according to chron.com.
  • Available stock. One concern of brick and mortar store owners is keeping enough products on hand at all times and risking the possibility of ordering more then they need. However, that is not the case online as you can order or produce only what customers are looking for and no more.
  • More customers. The number of potential sales is no longer limited to the immediate area around your physical location, but now can include customers from around the world.
  • No constraints. Creativity should not be restricted, rather it should be embraced. Creating an online store as your primary business location or as additional arm for your company allows you to create without worry. Since you are not restricted to a physical amount of space, you can offer more choices to potential customers.
  • Always open. This may be more of an advantage for your customers, but an online store never closes. This means that even if you are asleep, you can still potentially be making money.

Create an Experience

In order to take advantage of the above benefits of eCommerce, a company needs to learn how to start an online store. Creating the ideal customer experience begins long before the customers even know you exist.
The first step in starting an online store begins with taking a look at the financial means available for this venture. While there are not as many costs involved with an online location as there are a physical one, there are still some costs to consider, according to score.org.
  • Web host. Chances are at least in the beginning; you will need to find a third party to host your new online home.
  • The cost of your domain name. This may or may not be covered in your payment to your web host. It is important especially for an eCommerce business to have a personalized domain name.
  • Security. Internet safety is a growing concern among all users, especially among those who make any type of purchase online.
  • Advertising. The greatest website in the world is not a useful business tool unless people know where to find it. When looking at advertising costs consider all platforms, including social media ads you may need to purchase.
  • Checkout process. Customers who decide to make a purchase will need somewhere to check out. Chances are as the owner, you will be paying for them to have this ability.

Once all of the finances are figured out, the fun of actually creating your store can begin. Think of this process like it is your physical store front window. The display should be colorful and engaging to anyone who visits. You also want the site to be easy to navigate. Just as customers may leave a physical store if they feel overwhelmed, they may also leave a website that is not user-friendly.
The elements of a user-friendly experience may differ depending upon whether you are targeting a demographic in your home country or want to expand to reach the overseas market. If you are looking outside your native country, some of the specifics to consider include the following, according to forbes.com.
  • Translation.There is no single universal language that everyone speaks around the world. In order to make customers feel more welcome, consider adding a translation tool.
  • Shipping policies. These are important for both domestic and international customers to understand. Make sure you clearly spell out time tables and costs along with any other needed information. Always offer additional assistance for those who may need some extra clarity.

Along with creating a user-friendly environment, businesses should focus on visual elements. Consumers are not able to physically touch the items in an online store so it is important to be as descriptive and visual as possible.
There are many advantages to creating an online store that will turn a dream into reality. Plan your online store like a physical location and soon you will be able to take advantage of the many benefits of eCommerce.



  
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