Are you thinking about setting up your own online store or have you already taken the first steps? If this is you, there are a few things you need to know. One of the most important bits of information for new e-commerce entrepreneurs is this—common e-commerce mistakes to avoid at all costs.
Making even the simplest and seemingly innocent mistakes can cause serious problems further down the line. Lost customers, decreased traffic, and a bad perception about your brand can all be detrimental.
5 Common E-Commerce Mistakes to Avoid
These are 5 of the most common mistakes that can, in some cases, be fatal, especially for brand new stores that are just starting to come to fruition.
1. Not creating unique content
The worst thing you can do by far is fill up your store’s website and blog with content that is unoriginal or, even worse still, copied. Doing this is the quickest way to ensure that your site never, ever ranks well in Google.
When you copy content such as blog posts and product descriptions, not only do you murder your chances of ranking highly in Google, but you also provide nothing new, interesting, or exciting to your potential customers.
2. Having a domain that makes no sense
Your domain name is one of the most important start-up decisions you can make. Your domain name should be related to your company and what you are selling. You also can’t go wrong with registering a domain that mirrors your company’s name.
We recommend doing domain name research before settling on a company name as you may find that it is already taken. With a nonsensical domain name, you are less likely to attract people to your store and make a purchase.
3. Only offering one payment option
One of the most common e-commerce mistakes is not offering a selection of payment methods. Not everybody uses PayPal, after all. Credit and debit cards, pre-paid cards, and other online payment platforms such as Skrill are all payment methods just as popular as PayPal and you should accept payments from all of them.
Luckily, platforms such as Shopify and Prestashop—two of the most powerful e-commerce platforms available—accept a variety of payment methods by default and if you use these platforms to launch your store, this is not something you will need to worry about.
They do not generate sales by themselves and you shouldn’t expect them to.
Simply having a presence on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, amongst others, is not enough on its own to boost your online sales. This is one of the newer common e-commerce mistakes that lots of newbie entrepreneurs are starting to make.
Whilst social media is powerful, it is a tool like any other and you need to use it properly to extract any value from it—they are a means towards an end and the buck doesn’t stop with them. Also, do not set up your online store solely through social media, either… go with a platform!
5. Not knowing your target market
You need to know what your target market is or who your ideal customers are and not knowing this is a very common e-commerce mistake. Research isn’t just about finding a product niche, it’s about finding an ideal customer, too. It is hard to build up a product and then go out to find your customers—in an ideal world, you would have the customers first.
Even if your product is in a niche that has decent demand, if you don’t know who your target market is then it is going to be a lot harder for you to get established. There are lots of ways you can carry out target market research and we suggest doing this if you haven’t done so already before you go any further.
Avoiding Common E-Commerce Mistakes is Easy
When you know about them, that is.
Starting out with your first e-commerce is exciting and it is very easy to make mistakes that can harm your growth in the long-term. By being aware of what to look for and how to avoid it, you stand a higher chance of success.