Selling items online can be a great way to make a living or an awesome way to earn a side income. With the creation of the internet and the dawn of many other digital-based services, starting a small online business is easier and more affordable than ever before. Unfortunately, that also means that there are now a lot of other people selling online, too.. How do you stand out in the market and make sure your business does well?
There is no one-and-done solution for doing so, but starting with a good strategy is always a good idea. To come up with a solid plan for your online business, make sure you abide by these golden rules:
Focus on Relationship-Building Instead of Hard-Selling
Jumping on potential buyers may seem like a good way to get through your sales funnel, but it can do more harm than good. No one likes to be pounced on, especially when they’re shopping online. People browsing the web simply want to find a certain product, compare prices with different sellers, and buy something in peace. That being said, it’s better to establish long-term relationships with your customers if you really want to promote your online business.
You can do this through social media marketing and by sending out email blasts if you have a newsletter. Being genuine and going the extra mile for customers is better for building loyalty and encouraging repeat buyers. While it’s good to have new customers buying your products, you should always prioritize forming a relationship with them instead of getting them to buy something all the time.
Do Not Sell OnYour Personal Social Media
Social media is still considered by many to be a social setting, as this is where they interact with their friends and family. That being said, using your personal profile to sell your products is simply inappropriate because your loved ones will begin to think that you only see them as would-be buyers. If you want to use your personal profile to sell your products, post to groups or online marketplaces that are specifically made for buying and selling. You can also create a profile on an e-commerce platform and sell from there.
After all, flooding your friends’ feeds with endless posts about your online business will only get you muted and unfollowed by them. Limiting your selling posts to certain groups and sites keeps your personal life and business separate and your friends won’t feel like you just see them as customers.
Make Your Website User-Friendly
Make sure your business website is easy to navigate and is minimalistic. The more straightforward and frictionless the buying experience is for your customers, the better. People may already be poised to make a purchase from your online store but may change their mind once they encounter an inconvenience. If customers have to jump through hoops just to buy something from your website, it needs to be updated. It should be easy for people to explore your website and make a purchase. Invest in high-quality web content or copy, and ensure that you support different payment options, including cashless payments. Web user experience can truly make or break a successful business.
Price Your Products Properly
While the draw of low-priced products will certainly help you get more customers, you might find that you’re losing money. However, don’t make your prices so high that your audience can no longer afford them. Be realistic about what prices are reasonable so you can still break even or earn more than what you spend on inventory. Take a look at what your competitors are pricing their products, get the average amount, and use that to price your own products.
Offer a Free Shipping Option
There are a lot of customers who instantly get turned off from purchasing from an online business if they always have to pay for shipping. While it makes sense to charge for shipping for smaller orders, foregoing it for larger orders will definitely help boost your sales. More people will be willing to buy more products to reach the minimum required for free shipping, especially if they already like your products to begin with. This will more than make up for the cost of delivery and is a great selling point to encourage people to be frequent buyers.
Have a Backup Plan In Case Things Go Awry
While a financial crisis might potentially affect your business, you can mitigate the amount of damage by being prepared for it. Having a plan can keep your business afloat or operating through trying times, and something great can even come out of it. Be smarter with your finances now by using an app to track your expenses and building an emergency fund for your business. You can also expand your product range to enable your business to generate revenue and continue to thrive even during a recession.
If you’re thinking about starting your own small online business, there is no better time than now to do it. By following the rules above, you can ensure that your online business has the best chances of succeeding.
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