Internet shopping is soaring over the world, and companies that once doubted whether its customers would buy their products online, now are catching up with those businesses that were faster to get their ecommerce stores live, putting themselves a few steps ahead of their competitors.
Online shopping makes customers lives easier, and enables companies to widen their business horizons. Therefore, if you want to be competitive in the retail business, ecommerce is more than ever a must step for your company.
Internet has to be considered as a primary selling site for many companies, as it is a perfect match to combine with other retail premises.
Ecommerce requires that your company develop a comprehensive strategy in order to answer customers demand effectively.
Logistics and facilities
When purchasing any product online, the expectation is to receive it rapidly, in good condition, and it has be as described on your website. Your company has to act as soon as possible in case those goods provided are incorrect, not in a satisfactory condition, or have been damaged during delivery.
Before setting up your company’s ecommerce shop, you must sort out the logistics and facilities that are necessary to promptly respond to customers’ requests. Otherwise, the trust in your business could be in danger, and it will negatively affect your online store and your brand.
Setting up your online store
Sometimes small businesses initially go for selling their products by auction sites such as eBay. However, the biggest inconvenience of this ecommerce solution is the inability to fix prices, as bids are the way to agree fees.
Businesses that want to establish their online presence should use other ecommerce options different from auction sites to have full control over their prices and conditions.
There are plenty of ecommerce platforms on the market that your company can chose from. If you want to read in more detail click on Choosing the best Ecommerce shopping cart software for your business
You could also use a reseller such as Amazon, Yahoo, Google, among others. Costs vary accordingly to complexity and they offer solutions suitable for small to large size businesses.
The last option available is to create a tailor-made ecommerce platform for your business that would be design specifically for your products and needs.
Building your website
Register a domain name and choose a hosting service. They are like the online name and virtual space for your business.
Designing your online store
Your company’s online store should suit to your goods, and reflect your business image and brand.
When it comes to online shopping, a user-friendly design is vital to facilitate customer experience, and to make as easy as possible for them to purchase any of your company’s products or services.
Which online solution is the best?
Running a successful online store demands a careful selection of the most suitable platform for your type of business, products, and market. Do not hurry up, and make sure you take into consideration every detail before making your mind.
Foundry preferred platforms for building an online store are Magento and OpenCart due to their functionality, capacity for customizing features according to market demands, and support given by providers.
In addition, Magento and OpenCart are user-friendly ecommerce platforms that enable companies to have full control after setting up.
Setting up an Internet merchant account
An Internet merchant account is necessary in order to accept payments online from customers by credit and/or debit cards, even if your company already have a merchant account for face-to-face transactions.
You could get your account through your bank or using a payment-processing company. At Foundry Digital, we are working with First Data, which offer merchant and acquiring services, so your customers can safely and securely pay online using debit and credit card, and you can be sure, payments will reach your bank account promptly.
How an Internet merchant account works?
When a customer has decided what is going to buy and is ready to pay for their goods, they are re-directed to a payment page where they securely enter their payments details before being returned to retailer site at the end of the transaction.
Most of payment processing companies’ sites enable you to customise not only your fraud prevention settings but also the payment page with your company logo, fonts and colour scheme to match your branding.
In addition, you can have access to range of online reports that are very useful when it comes to evaluate results.
PCI DSS Compliance Programme
Any company that accept card payments from costumers, must meet the mandatory requirements of PCI DSS that consists of 12 requirements, intended to secure and protect payment card data. Payment processing companies provide PCI compliance programmes to help you achieve those mandatory requirements.
Promoting your online store
All your efforts could go in vain without a marketing strategy for your online store. Your ecommerce promotion must include email marketing, social media exposure in sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Flickr, blogs; online advertising campaigns, and SEO strategies to improve your company’s online presence, increase traffic and boost sales.
In addition to social sites, an affiliate network can help you drive additional traffic and boost sales pretty quickly.
Get in touch with many webmasters that will be happy to promote your products in exchange of a referral commission. Consider sites like Commission Junction or Trade doubler, and register your company as Advertiser and market your site to thousands of publishers.
Finally, consider pay per click advertising and devise a strategy that focuses on keywords around your products and it’s targeted to your market to ensure a high level of conversions.
Foundry can help you find the right ecommerce solution for any kind of business including small to large retailers.
We also device, design, develop and promote your online store according to your needs and budget. Please call 020 8761 2108 or 07772886969 or email us email@example.com
and calculate your budget and timescale