The online medium has become an important channel to propagate your message to the audience. Many businesses are also taking the online route to sell their products. The advent of high-speed internet and smartphones go a long way in ensuring the exponential growth of the e-commerce industry. Research suggests that the industry will reach USD 4.2 trillion in 2020 and will grow further to USD 6.5 trillion by 2023.
Users are finding it more feasible to buy online due to deep discounts and also because they can surf online while being on the move. It has resulted in more e-commerce sites entering the fray. Setting up a website may seem to be a daunting task, but if you sit back and sip some coffee, you will notice that you must follow a sequence of steps and setting up a website is easy due to the several options available around you. The eCommerce website setup needs to follow a few steps. In this article, we will discuss the various stages in detail.
Choosing Your Portfolio
It is essential to come out clear on the products or services you wish to offer. You must research the target and their propensity to buy your portfolio of offerings. It is crucial to evaluate the market for your offerings. Studies show that around 90% of all start-ups fail, and you would not like to be among them. A proper market survey is vital to validate your product ideas and the potential market. A survey will also allow you to find the target market segment, and you can focus your marketing efforts in catering to that segment. You can either look up online reports available, contact the industry associations for reports, or depute a professional agency to help you.
Create a Business Plan
It is essential to plan your activities, and more so when you intend to start a business. While the amount of detail that you wish to include is entirely your call, it must contain sufficient detail to inform you about the steps to take, the objectives from those activities and a timeline. You must brainstorm with like-minded people and list all the actions you need to start the website. Several webinars discuss the steps you must follow to set up an e-commerce business. The plan will help you in prioritizing activities on how to reach out to your target market. It will also help you to ascertain the procurement channels, marketing channels to be taken, and the logistics.
Doing the Initial Activities
Once you have the business plan in place, you must get the entity registered with the government authorities. You may take the help of registered consultants to help you. You must name your website a name with which your customers can acquaint themselves. Once you have decided on the website name, you must decide on the logo.
You must now get a domain name registered that will identify your website on the internet. There are many such services available. Also, choose a reliable web host. Always do background research about their security apparatus as data security is of prime importance for your site.
Selecting an e-Commerce platform
An essential step in the eCommerce website setup is to choose the right e-commerce platform. It is a daunting task, and you must consider various factors. You must consider
You must consider the most important factors like data security, website load speed, compatibility with payment gateways, features, and functionalities available, etc. There are several renowned platforms from which you can choose.
Woocommerce is the most common CMS that helps you to take control of the design and gives access to numerous free and paid plugins. You can choose from several themes too and can be translated into many different languages also.
Shopify is another renowned platform that is used by over half a million businesses. It is a fully hosted solution and has an integrated payments solution. It comes with associated modules that can help an e-store.
You can also use other platforms like Magento, Wix, Squarespace, etc.
Installing an SSL Certificate
Data breaches are a security risk that also affects start-ups. It is the reason that installing an SSL certificate is so important. The HTTPS protocol will help to encrypt the communication between the web browser of the visitor and your web server. It will help to thwart any cyberattack.
To choose an SSL certificate based on the requirement, you can choose Comodo SSL certificates. You can browse through an assortment of SSL certificates that are compatible with all popular browsers. The certificates come with unlimited server licensing and also come rather cheap.
Web browsers have started marking non-HTTPS websites as "Not Secure", and your e-shop must deploy all necessary processes to ensure data security. Your site must also adhere to the PCI-DSS regulations that mandate all websites undertaking financial transactions to install an SSL certificate.
Customizing Your Website
It is essential to include the important features in your site that can draw visitors. You must ensure that your visitors have an excellent user experience. Do not forget to make your website responsive that can render the same view across all mobile handsets. The site must adequately showcase the products, and it must be akin to a retail store with proper segregation of product categories.
It is also important to include multiple payment options. Integrating with the payment gateways is critical. Always choose a platform that allows you to interface with multiple payment gateways. You must enable customers to checkout using wallets, credit or debit cards as well as bank transfer.
Get Ready to Start
Once your website is ready, you can start bringing in visitors to your site. Digital marketing is an essential avenue for growth. Use online marketing best practices to bring more visitors to your site. Embark them on the buyer's journey to ensure more sale closures.
The exponential growth of e-commerce has lured more start-ups into joining the industry. The article discusses in detail the steps to follow for an Ecommerce website setup. The going will not be easy unless you have a well-designed website to back up your efforts. You must have a laid down business plan along with a reliable site to help you.