In our digital age nearly every business wants to expand its presence on the market and web shops is one of the easiest ways to do that. Online selling is much more cost efficient than brick-and-mortar stores – no office rental fees, electric and water bills, fire security control, and workers’ salaries and wages. Your web shop is open 24/7 and doesn’t need salesmen. Frankly speaking, the only thing you need here is a comprehensive and customer-friendly ecommerce platform. Online store solutions can satisfy any user, whether it’s a fresh-comer on the ecommerce market or a well-established brand shop with thousands of loyal customers. Every business can choose the basic package with minimum essential features, or an extended version with additional tools. It goes without saying, that the price and contents in basic and advanced versions are different.
All basic plans contain several vital features, real must-haves for any ecommerce web site. A reliable web shopping cart program should provide users with numerous design patterns for any selling business, from flower shop to digital services and goods. High level of site usability and advanced product search facilitate the buying process and help to retain customers. Marketing and analytic tools are of great importance for those who try to boost sales and increase their efficiency. Meanwhile, you can also sell through social networks like international Twitter and Facebook, or local as French Copainsdavant. Don’t forget about mobile users – a significant part of buyers goes online through smartphones and tablet PCs. More and more online shopping cart script builders add mobile version for iOS and Android users into their software packages.
Personal data and transaction security and fraud protection have recently become vitally important issues. Taking care of prospects’ and loyal customers’ security is decent, and moreover, not at all expensive even for webstores with several scraper sites. Some e-commerce software builders offer Cloud storage – a sure way to get a rocket-speed image load and protect all valuable data. Try to provide your customers and online shop visitors with attractive visual information – bright product pictures, short videos and demos, clear product descriptions and interesting customer feedback stories. Most web shopping cart programs enable uploading of full pictures as well as small previews. The last ones are especially useful for customers with slow Internet connection.
High speed connection will help you to retain the most impatient e-shop visitors. In fact, you’ve got only 3or 4 seconds to get your product info loaded, otherwise they’ll close the page and leave for a quicker web store. Most popular online store solutions offer multiple payment methods, like cash, cheques, credit and debit cards, e-money and banking transfer. Some platforms take transaction fees from customers paying by credit cards, so warn your prospects about it before checkout.
Nowadays all successful web shops offer quick one-page checkout, and customers have already get used to it. It smooths the buying process and provides a positive general impression of the store. On the contrary, overlong checkout can bore customers so much that they’ll leave without payment, and never come back. Easy web site navigation is another comfortable feature that shows customers that you take care of them and know the value of time. If you’d like to save some money and get more control over your future web store, opt for open source e-commerce software. Such solutions demand a bit of experience in web development and coding, and a lot of time and effort, but are less expensive. Perhaps, it will be relevant to add such user-friendly features as customer wish list, abandoned shopping cart alert or auto save. They aren’t obligatory but are highly recommended by flourishing web shop owners.
Web shopping cart program
Several simple tools for market and customer data analysis won’t hurt but can appear useful for better comprehension of customer needs and preferences. These tools will also give you an idea of your sales geography, average customer age and target groups. All this information, if used right, can boost your sales and contribute a lot to the success of your selling business. Don’t forget about worldwide delivery options. Even if you think to sell only locally, Internet has no boundaries, and sooner or later you’ll certainly get a prospect from another side of the globe. If he leaves your store satisfied, others can arrive after him.
Customer support can be organized in different ways – online chat directly on the website, via Skype, Viber, MSN or another VoIP service. During non-working hours and on week-ends ask your prospects to contact you by email. Customer feedback can give you lot of valuable information about e-shop operations, products and delivery. Try to satisfy as many complaints as possible in order to retain buyers and make them your loyal agents. Some goods, like audio or video products, don’t have images and may need some short demonstration – a several-seconds piece for music or a teaser for a film. In this case you’ll have to provide an enduring data storage with quick and safe Internet connection, like Cloud service.
Don’t run to extremes trying to fix every little bug and defect beforehand. Start selling as quickly as possible and solve the problems in the course of operation is the best way to build a successful ecommerce web site. It’s exactly what eBay and Amazon did years and years ago, and you see where they’re now. Why don’t you follow their way and, perhaps, build one of the biggest online shops on the Web?
Use our Video Tutorials to become more aware of advanced tools and features that CS-Cart shopping cart software offers.