Gcreate Graphic designer located in Cardiff & Caerphilly- How to have a successful online Store.
I haven’t done a blog post in a while due to me being so busy, but recently I have been doing a fair amount of online stores, however the same questions keep coming up; how much does it cost? will they take a percentage away from my sales? how easy is it to setup and maintain? and finally how do I get people to buy on my store? There are a few questions there so let me try and break them down;
How much does an online store cost?:
For this process I am only going to be talking about sites/programs I have experience in, so if you have your own server or want to do it on Wordpress then some of these points might not apply to you.
I create all my client websites with Wix, mainly because it is heavily focused on the visual and design aspect rather than the coding side, this is by no means a perfect solution but as it’s only me and I am a graphic designer this is perfect. With Wix you can can have a free URL, which will normally be www.wix.com/yourname , it pretty much functions the same like any other website, the only issue is that the URL is not really something people might not buy from and also there are a bunch of WIX banners and logos telling people that it’s a free site. You can however upgrade to a paid package which I think is around £10 (it’s the ecommerce plan).
This is not by all means perfect but wix do not take any percentage from all sales you make, only Paypal and stripe take away a small amount which is around 3% to 5%.
How easy is it to set up an online store?:
This is pretty much two questions; 1- is it easy to create a website? 2- is it easy to populate an online store?
Lets tackle one first:
The simple answer for using wix to create a website is yes, its pretty easy to create a website. However not everyone knows how to make a website function , but because wix makes it very easy to add elements people think they can cut costs by creating it themselves and just keep adding random elements. This is wrong on a number of levels, for one it makes the website look amateurish and will probably slow up the website the list can go on for a while but the fact is all that might prevent people buying from your site.
Wix also allows the layout and design to be “auto converted” into a mobile version of the site, I have put these in quotes because 95% of the time it requires people to redesign some elements as its never perfect.
As for number two:
Yes its very simple to add a few products onto a store, however if you have many different products with many different options, each product needs a table and text it can then be more of a question how long will it take to add it all correctly, the answer…..a pretty long time if you have products with different options, information and images. Sadly you can’t take many shortcuts on this as the products need to be at their best to convince people to hit that buy button.
How easy is it to maintain?:
With Wix and similar systems, maintaining can be little to no work. Adding a discount code to a product, or putting it on sale is pretty simple. The only thing that might get a bit complex is when you start adding additional features that you then need to add to the rest, my only advice on this would be try to think a little ahead on what might happen down the line. The last thing you want to do is add text or features on all of your products when it could have been added when it was set up, doing it later will cost you time and money.
How do I get people to buy from my store?:
The million dollar question isn’t it? Well sadly there is no magic answer, however from my experience one main thing that comes up is relating to people so they trust you and your business.
This might be done by having a unique product on the market, or finding a gap where there is a need. However there isn’t always a gap or need so how do you get people to buy? I think getting reactions and engagement is by far the best thing you could ever do.
Set up a facebook page and make sure you are always posting, do not however over post as people don’t want spam on their feed. Get people to comment on posts or videos, and throw competitions to get people excited.
On your website create a blog, this is by far the best SEO you could ever hope for a website, as you can keep adding to your site without having to change the home page or news page every week to improve SEO.
And speaking of SEO make sure all of your images are correctly named, all the keywords are in your homepage and product pages. When someone types Can of Soda in google or bing, you want that bit of text to be on every single page so it can be easily found.
If you have reached the end of this blog then you can tell I have had some experience in helping clients with these issues. The most important thing is not to cut corners, focus on your strengths and do not try to do things that you “think” you know. If all these points are covered and done with a professional then you will see your sales go up.
Contact me to help with some or all of the elements here, plus there is so much more I haven’t listed. So what are you waiting for? Got a website that isn’t doing well? Need more sales on your website? Or just want more people to engage your facebook page! Get in touch now.
Contact me if you need to get started