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Make Your eCommerce Site Failure-Proof

Often companies while developing their eCommerce business from ground zero tend to make similar mistakes. They don’t have specific business objectives, don’t plan site promotion well ahead, and most importantly forget that eCommerce like any other business requires to have some key advantages over the competitors.

Building an eCommerce business is not an easy job! The chances of making mistakes in selecting the right solution for your specific business are quite high as there are way too many options around. If you are not ready to spend big money on your Internet venture in the beginning, there are online systems that allow you to create and run eCommerce site for a small monthly payment. Advantages of these solutions are that you can build a site for a very short period of time and you don’t need a major initial investment. However, these solutions provide limited functionalities, which could be a big inconvenience. Yahoo, Rusbiz, and Bigstep are examples of this type of systems.

Another way of building an eCommerce site is to get an off-the-shelf solution. This is good if you have some knowledge of programming or you have enough time to learn technical aspects of these solutions.

The third option is to hire a developer to build your eCommerce site. The good thing about this approach is that you can design your site reflecting your company image and give your eShop unique look and feel. But the problem here is that for every minor change on the website you will need to contact the developer which makes site support pretty expensive.

The best but more expensive solution is to use site development companies. If you are working with a professional company, depending on the size of your web project a professional team of people will be taking care of it. Namely: your account manager, lead programmer, web programmer, designer, content editor, database programmer, web promotion specialist, and web administrator. If you are serious about your eCommerce website and planning to hire a professional company you should consider building your site with dynamic pages holding an administrative capability. This means you will be able to edit contents of these pages yourself without requiring any help from programmers.

If you already have an eCommerce site but sales are still low as the site is not popular yet and few people visit your site, you probably need a web promotion specialist. Search engine optimization has become the primary aspect of your web promotional efforts. Studies show that over 80 percent visitors come through the search engines. If you end up in the top three positions of a search result your chance of getting visited increases dramatically.

Your eCommerce site is not just another sales channel! For many companies after launching their online shop in a very short period it became the primary sales channel. In most cases after opening an Internet shop the sales of the company increase from 20 percent to 100 percent within first year.

Although, to have a professionally built high-quality eCommerce site seems like an obvious choice, majority of the eshops available today are not even close to the required standard. Apart from the functionalities of the website, its design and usability, content, offered products, their variety and specifications are also important factors.

Often vendors forget that it is always better to focus on a niche market rather than trying to sell everything to everybody. It is easier to promote several products rather than thousands of unrelated goods and services. Especially, since key word marketing is becoming outrageously expensive. For example if you are in cosmetic and perfume industry it is difficult to compete with big merchants when you are not focused in a single type of product line such as cosmetic masks. Keep in mind that you can become a major player in your specific niche if you are one of pioneers in the field.

In many aspects of Internet shops, Amazon still sets the standard. You should study this site carefully. Any eCommerce site can adopt wonderful ideas from this industry behemoth. Look at how their search system works. Although, it is a huge site with hundreds of thousands of products, you can find any product you are interested in virtually immediately. The second important thing you should notice is that every product carries enough information so that customers can take immediate buying decision. Another thing is the simple but attractive and clear design of the pages. The contents are also segmented and presented thoughtfully.

Around 76 percent of all of your visitors are looking for more information on the product or service they are planning to buy. Only 44 percent know what exactly they are going to buy but there is no guarantee that they will buy from your site. That’s why it is very important to have enough content that can influence positively on their buying decision.

To build an effective online shop you should try to avoid the following common mistakes:

Building a site without professional help

If you are just experimenting than it is a different thing. But, if you are serious about your prospective Internet business, you should hire professionals to do this. Gone are the days, when you could build a site and people would come any way! Now you have to build professional sites. A visitor takes less than a second to decide subconsciously whether he is going to stay on this site or move on. Design plays a key role on this. If your choice of colors and page layout along with the pictures are not effective enough, you simply loose clients not even knowing about it.

Forgetting about the functional mistakes that annoy visitors

These are wrong links, slow page loading, bad site navigation, unclear marketing message, pop-ups, and a huge number of products on one page.

Trying to sell everything to everybody

Better concentrate on few vital products from your industry. You should become the expert for the products and services that you sell.

Don’t forget that like offline world, service is important on the Internet as well. It should be simple for buyers to find products, check out and delivery should be easy and prompt. After sale support should be of high standard.

If you would like to avoid failure, define your business objectives, figure out the system functionalities needed to achieve these objectives, and add necessary information requirement to system functionalities.

Advantages of Being in the Home Based Business Industry

Running a home-based business offers many advantages to the entrepreneur. First and foremost is the fact that self-employment is the only true form of employment security. With over 5.7 million people currently unemployed and millions more projected to join their ranks over the next 18 months, employment security is a critical consideration. The self-employed entrepreneur never has to worry about being laid-off, fired, or downsized.Probably equally as important is the quality of life that flows to the home based business person. Many aspects of corporate America simply cease to exist when the entrepreneur is able to work from the comfort of their own home. Grueling, frustrating, and stressful commutes are completely eliminated immediately, along with all of the costs associated with them. Since all meals are consumed at home, the cost of simple groceries replaces the cost of eating in restaurants and commercial eateries. Many home-based entrepreneurs choose a very comfortable form of attire when working, as opposed to the suits and expensive office wardrobe one must purchase for a corporate job.If a home-based business utilizes the Internet, it’s no longer really a home-based business so much as it is an online business. As such, the Internet entrepreneur simply requires a computer, an Internet connection, and a bank account enabling them to work literally anywhere in the world. In addition to the flexibility of not being confined to an office, the home-based entrepreneur can work when they want to for as long as they want to. And because income is tied to the effort expended, work from home business people can literally write their own paychecks at whatever amount they choose.There are other benefits as well. A properly structured and set up home based business qualifies for many tax reductions under IRS tax laws. Although it is important to receive the professional advice of a CPA, home-based entrepreneurs can shave thousands of dollars off their annual tax return simply by working from their home office.Of course there are some downsides. Working from home requires tremendous discipline. It is very easy to become sidetracked or to waste time doing nonessential or non-business-related tasks. Particularly if there are family members present, they must understand that when the home-based entrepreneur is working they are effectively not home.The recession has hit many people very hard. Anyone who has already lost their job or feels they are at risk of losing it should consider a home-based business as a viable and easily implemented solution.