Ecommerce has become increasingly popular in recent years and has seen significant growth in sales and revenue. With the ease of setting up an online store, many amateurs are jumping into the ecommerce industry without much experience or knowledge.
However, in this rush to make money, there are some common mistakes that these beginners tend to make which can significantly impact the success of their online business. In this article, we will discuss 18 common ecommerce mistakes to avoid to ensure a successful and profitable online store.
Not doing market research
Ramit Sethi, bestselling author and creator of several business courses, says: visit the fishing holes. Fishermen never line their lines with any water they find. Instead of doing research, they go somewhere they already have fish and give something they cannot reject.
This hole can be found all across the world in terms of market research: Google searches, Facebook group videos (and comments), reviews for the competitors, forums…
Choosing the wrong ecommerce platform
It is possible to have different types of online stores. Some of them offer only basic functions or have no options for upgrades. Others can be interesting at first but then surprise you through hidden costs, making it expensive to choose the platform.
Most e-commerce platforms have less customizable options, either using a third-party solution or limiting them entirely. The best ecommerce software is going to expand with you with features that can expand with your growth.
You need to use the best ecommerce platform that you can afford and grow into. It is much harder to move an online business later than it is to grow into one. I highly recommend Shopify or WooCommerce.
Complex website navigation
Maintaining an unreliable website is a common e-commerce error. The website must combine functionality and design. Not only do websites have an excellent appearance, but they want to make them paid clients too!
The problem occurs when the navigation is confusing and the site navigation is difficult. To minimize these errors optimize websites for user experience, such as smooth navigation and pleasant experiences for your clients.
It helps people find what they want quicker — which will increase revenue for you.
No strong brand message or identity
Do you think your product will sell itself? The key to a successful business is developing an identity that is recognizable to its audience and can be promoted via viral advertising. After performing research, it’ll become easier for you to identify the types of language your target market needs to hear.
You just need to be clear about how much your message is. Whatever your company mission is, it is reflected throughout your content, brand strategy and marketing efforts. Your customer will notice.
Lack of Security Measures
Security is critical in ecommerce, and amateurs can often overlook this critical aspect. Because if we neglect security measures, it can result in data breaches, which will lose our customers’ trust in our abilities.
We should prioritize robust security protocols to comply with industry standards, whether this is international payment processing or SSL certificates so we can safeguard customer information.
Limited Payment Options
Offering diverse payment methods such as Stripe or PayPal can accommodate customers from all over the world. We should think internationally when it comes to our payment options because this will naturally bring more customers on board.
There are so many times when we want to purchase something from another country but become overwhelmed with the exchange rates and other mathematical components.
If you provide a variety of payment options, this could blow your customer base wide open.
Not Using Easily Readable (Seo-Friendly) URLs
Having long, complicated URLs can be a turn-off for users and make it difficult for search engines to crawl your website effectively. It is important to use descriptive, relevant keywords in your URLs to improve SEO and make it easier for users to remember and share your website.
For example, instead of using a string of random numbers and letters in your URL, opt for something like “www.example.com/womens-shoes” which is easier to read and understand.
No Social Media Presence
In today’s digital age, social media presence is essential for any business. It allows you to connect with your customers in a more personal way and build relationships with them. Not utilizing social media platforms in your ecommerce business is a missed opportunity for increased brand visibility and customer engagement.
Social media also plays a role in driving traffic to your website, as well as providing another channel for customer support and feedback. It’s important to have an active presence on at least one or two social media platforms that align with your target market to effectively utilize this powerful tool in your ecommerce strategy.
Do some research to find which social media platform your target audience is most likely to be on, and learn best practices for it. You do not need to be on every social media platform in the beginning.
Lack-luster product descriptions
Product pictures cannot do everything but need convincing descriptions. The absence of in-depth and descriptive product descriptions can be a major mistake in ecommerce.
Customers often rely on detailed descriptions to make informed purchasing decisions, and without them, they may turn to competitors or simply lose interest in your products.
It’s important to provide accurate and thorough descriptions that highlight the features and benefits of your products to attract buyers and drive sales.
Neglecting Customer Service
Because there is a screen protecting us from our customers, it can be easy to make the impact that responsive and helpful customer service can bring.
If a customer has a question about a product, replying within 24 hours with clear communication can build trust and loyalty. Over time, if customers have a number of the same types of queries, this can form the basis of a comprehensive FAQ section, which then means you don’t need to spend time replying to emails. Or on the other hand, you could create a template of responses.
Great customer service will be the thing that keeps people coming back. Poor customer service will ruin you.
Search engine optimization is critical for the visibility of your ecommerce store, and amateurs can often underestimate the impact of search engine optimization in driving organic traffic.
SEO for product pages can improve your website’s search engine rankings with just a few simple additions. Using relevant keywords is one approach that can form a solid SEO strategy.
Neglecting Mobile Optimization
One of the biggest mistakes amateurs make is not setting up their website for mobile devices. The vast majority of online traffic will come from smartphones, so if you are setting up your own ecommerce website you will struggle to grow your business if you do not have a mobile-friendly website.
It’s amazing how many people don’t configure their website for mobile users, and this is an absolute non-negotiable because it will provide a seamless experience across various devices to elicit trust from the customer.
Lack of marketing
Absent or poor marketing are common ecommerce mistakes that businesses make in every form and size. If your message is unremarkable and not authentic then people can see it. Make sure your message is targeted towards the right people at your site in a good method.
Think about the audience and where it will go in the marketing. Your communications need to be regular, unintrusive and unintentional.
Poor mix of media and videos
Your online shop should encourage your customers to purchase. The information must be sufficiently clear so as not to become too complicated.
It’s usually the mistake of throwing everything in an online store or product page.
Mixing multimedia, including images and videos, is persuasive. If your website takes “over a few minutes” to load and/or is difficult for users to navigate, your webpage is in danger of failing you or causing you trouble. Each step you take when creating your ecommerce website should have a clear goal.
Your customers should be able to easily find what they are looking for without having to click through numerous pages or search through a cluttered menu.
Ensure that your navigation is organized in a logical and user-friendly manner, with clear categories and sub-categories for your products.
It’s also important to have a search function in case customers know exactly what they are looking for and want to find it quickly. Making the shopping experience as smooth and effortless as possible can lead to increased sales and customer satisfaction.
Pricing products with no research
After collecting the data on what your target audience wants and what problem you solve, you’ll also know how much your product will sell.
A common error e-commerce users make is not comparing prices. How do I reduce my production cost when market demand exceeds market value and quality?
What about the possibility that your prospects might actually spend much more money? Some businesses determine the pricing from the competition’s prices.
Poor product description and info
The next thing was big. Since your customers can’t interact with your products after purchasing them, you must give them a detailed explanation about why they purchased them.
Your product descriptions should now be focused on both subjective advantages for customers as well as objective features. What’s the point in doing both?
For some, in particular in the ecommerce world, in which we are seeing more and more businesses fail annually. If you have more insight in your product, you can provide a better and more attractive description that will convince customers to make a purchase.
Endless checkout process
The final step in the purchasing process is often the most overlooked when it comes to ecommerce mistakes. The checkout process should be as quick and simple as possible to prevent cart abandonment.
Having too many steps in the checkout process, or forcing customers to create an account to make a purchase can be major deterrents.
Offering guest checkout options and streamlining the process can increase your conversion rate and decrease abandoned carts.
If it’s too hard for people to buy from you, they won’t!
Bonus: Not tracking analytics
Analytics are crucial in understanding how your ecommerce website is performing and where improvements can be made.
Not tracking your website’s analytics is a common mistake that many businesses make in the ecommerce industry. Without knowing which pages are receiving the most traffic, which products are selling well, and how customers are navigating through your site, it’s difficult to make informed decisions about how to optimize your website for better results.
By regularly analyzing your analytics data, you can gain valuable insights and make necessary adjustments to improve your website’s performance and ultimately increase sales.
Avoiding some of these mistakes will ensure that your online business is not just successful, but sustainable. Be sure that you prioritize these.
So, to maximize the success of your ecommerce business, be sure to prioritize security measures, offer diverse payment options, provide excellent customer service, focus on SEO and optimize your website for mobile devices.
By avoiding these common mistakes, you can set yourself up for long-term success in the competitive world of ecommerce.