Once you’ve decided to go into ecommerce and create a personal web shop, take your time to think the matter over and study all pros and cons. It may seem to be a piece of cake, as far as some brick-and-mortar issues, as office rent, electricity and heating, fire and health security norms, etc., are absent in virtual stores. Nevertheless, running an online shop remains a business affair with its intrinsic challenges. If you have experience in managing a real-world store, you might think the switch to a web store will be as simple as ABC. Make sure not to underestimate the difference between these two types of stores, though.

Now let’s get into what it takes to build a successful online shop. From the very beginning, you’ll need some online store website builder software, which will transform your vision, ideas and needs into attractive product and info web pages. Surf the Net beforehand to get a more or less precise idea of the solutions available. There’re several free e-cart programs with basic functionality, but it will take you plenty of time to tune and adapt it. In this case additional modules and functions are payable. Free solutions are suitable for tiny online-shops or for a coder capable to finish writing the program himself. Building a web store could be a pleasant occupation, if you choose off-the-shelf e-shop solution. Generally, they provide ready-to-use tools and design patterns, a number of most popular functions, after-sales support and discount price for additional functionality, not included in the basic package.

To make a clever choice of e-shopping cart software, one should bear in mind several key points, which are must-have for any comprehensive solution:

  1. First of all, your major instrument – the administration panel – should be easy to use and self-explanatory. Gone are the days of hours spent on user manuals. Nowadays fine software should respect the customer and be user-friendly. Every time you need to change something in your e-shop, you’ll access the admin panel, so it should have a clear layout and obvious user interface. Logical order in categories and subcategories will help you to navigate quickly instead of clicking every tab every time. The simplicity of admin panel use may dictate the time you’ll take to master the main functionality of your web store program. The quicker you are, the sooner you’ll start selling. Don’t miss free trials proposed by many e-cart solution providers. Try as many as you can to find the one that suits you best.
  2. Another essential feature is programmable templates – pre-designed pages with built-in functionality. They facilitate customization, so you won’t need to interfere in the code manually every time you wish to change a button or page background color.
  3. Then, turn your regard on support of multiple payment methods. Be sure the chosen solution supports at least payments in cash, with e-money (like PayPal) and most popular credit cards like MasterCard, Visa or Diners Club. Payment methods depend on the countries you mostly sell to – for example, in many Asian and Central American countries there’re local payment systems, unfamiliar to Europe. Security protocol is another thing connected to payments. As the e-shop owner, you’re responsible for protection of your customers’ payments and any confidential information transferred via your web store. An SSL certificate will assure the necessary security level, and it’s not the web store system that provides it. After a rapid verification procedure, the accredited certification center issues an SSL certificate to the web site owner upon his demand.
  4. Product images and zoom feature play a crucial role for any online selling business. Make sure product image quality is good. Blurry or fuzzy photos not only make it hard to see what the product looks like, they make your overall site look poor. Attractive photos may draw prospects to your web site and boost the traffic.
  5. Built-in search tool will save you customers. Regular e-store buyers are fickle and have very short attention span. If they don’t find what they are looking for in two-three clicks, they are likely to leave your web page forever.
  6. Quick and easy checkout actually continues the above mentioned point. If your purchase process in too long and complicated, the impatient customers (and unfortunately, most of them are) will close the checkout page and continue shopping elsewhere. It’s better to dispose all checkout details on a single page.
  7. Marketing instruments, such as promos, discounts, sales and coupons are powerful customer attractions and can guarantee that your clients will return time and again. So, while building a web store, look for a solution with integrated marketing tools.
  8. Built-in newsletter and e-mail service can help you to inform customers about sales and other relative information, as well as remind them about orders. It’s a simple feature that helps building relationships with loyal customers.
  9. Feedback option is important, as it provides you customers’ opinions and impressions from your web shop altogether. It may give you plenty of ideas of what works well, and what should be redone as soon as possible.

Building a web store

After all, make sure that your web store sells. In seems evident, but numerous e-commerce home pages are absolutely useless from a shopping point of view. They resemble a simple brand presence or a physical shop, with one big “Buy now” button in the middle of the page. That’s surely not enough for a successful ecommerce project like yours.

The above tips will certainly make your online shop a real hit and the best go-to page for prospects. When there’s a will, there’s a way, as says the proverb, and you’ll build the best e-shop if only you take some pains.

Visit our website to get all necessary information that will help you make the right choice while coming to the ecommerce market.