What I need to know about e-shop
For several years, we in our company for web hosting MyIP have been observing the evolution of trade from physical stores to the electronic space. Due to the fact that the cost of building an e-shop has been reduced, more and more companies are building one so that their customers can make their purchases online.
The result is that e-commerce, from a strong competitive advantage of a few companies has become a key element of every business. Over time, however, the solutions for the infrastructure of an online store have changed. Now the cost of building an e-shop is much lower, which makes the decision easier.
This article will cover issues related to value and cost, while keeping in mind how to maximize profit.
Do I need an E-shop?
Do you think that the product or service that is available has value and would benefit a larger buying public? If so, online shopping is the way to grow your business.
According to the Hellenic Statistical Authority, electronic transactions increased for the third consecutive year, reaching 41.5%. The largest share of electronic instead of conventional transactions to be in clothing, footwear and sportswear, with 61.7%. Source: Hellenic Statistical Authority E-Commerce Use and Internet Security 2019 .
As we can see, even before the crisis of the new SARS-CoV2 coronavirus, there was the prospect of growth in e-commerce. However, it seems that it will increase due to the measures of social distancing.
In areas where there is competition, many companies have already or have launched the construction of an e-shop.
Indirect and future benefits
In addition, there is a unique opportunity that can not be missed. This further automates business processes. Modern e-shop systems have some computer capabilities and can be connected to other business programs. This way, the work can be done faster and easier, saving time and increasing profit.
Finally, you can export important information about your products and your business. This way you can see the customer’s point of view, and adjust accordingly.
Will building an e-shop bring me substantial profit?
The most reasonable question is whether the cost of building an e-shop will ultimately generate revenue so that there is a profit. Although the success of an online store depends on many factors, the most important thing is to recognize the opportunity. In other words: “Is it possible to increase my sales if I do an e-shop?”
Indicative questions to be answered:
- What is the competition?
- In the current situation, what different will my service or product offer so that they prefer me?
- How will consumer habits change in the coming years and what do I offer on it?
For a company that has a physical store, a good indication is that the products and services are evaluated positively. If there is more share it can claim, then an e-shop would give a good boost to sales. In any case, it must be borne in mind that the buying public is now that of the internet. If there is an opportunity, great importance must be given to the cost of the project and the speed of implementation.
E-shop construction cost issues
Cost and speed depend on technical implementation, legal compliance, content, and promotion.
As will be mentioned below, there are always ways to keep costs low without sacrificing the ultimate goal.
The first and one of the most important issues that concern the business that starts an online store is the cost of building your e-shop. It is important to find the point where we will invest the smallest possible amount and at the same time we will have the maximum profit. If a business is just starting its online store, costs and time should be kept to a minimum . We must always assume that only those functions that are considered necessary should be implemented .
Therefore, what you need to agree on before starting the construction of your e-shop, is what are the necessary functions for you. This way you will know the construction cost of your e-shop, as well as the construction time. It is important to have advice on your requirements, so that your capital can be used as best as possible.
Apart from a functional and well-designed page, it is very important that it complies with the laws and directives of the Greek state and the European Union. A typical example is the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
The cost of this work, although not very high, is respectable and adds a lot to the final cost. It is generally better to choose a construction package that covers them, instead of having to look for it yourself.
In addition to the technical part, great attention should be paid to the content of the e-shop, which usually includes:
- The products available in the store (photos, descriptions, etc.)
- Texts about the place where the company operates
As expected, a rich content helps a store immensely. Both its customers during the purchases but also in its promotion.
Particular attention should be paid to product images. The images are what each of us is looking for when buying a product online. A good image can promote a product better than a good text. If there are already images that can be used, bringing them into the store is a routine affair .
If no photos are available, the cost of a professional photo shoot is high. But even in this case there is a way to keep costs low. It is possible to get decent results with the proper use of programs, a medium-sized camera, and some low-cost items. The important thing is to be in the mood and the result will definitely be satisfactory.
Regarding the accompanying texts that may be available in the online store, these may include:
- Special information of each product, such as fabric, color
- Instructions, such as how the customer will measure its size in case of a clothing store
- Articles with information or ideas, such as color scheme in case of a decoration store.
In this area, the company can promote people who have the knowledge and the mood. There is of course the possibility of outsourcing, with the corresponding cost
Promotion is an important factor that determines the success of an online store. It can be done on the internet through ads on websites and social media, but also through search engine results. In the case of paid advertising, there are options such as appearing above Google search results or promoting your store through Facebook.
Advertising on social media
Advertising on social media is an effective practice . There is a choice of people who will see the ad, such as a specific age, gender, region, etc. In this case it is up to the company to allocate the amount it will allocate.
In addition to paid advertising, there is the Search Engine Optimization (SEO) technique . With it, the page provides relevant information to search engines, such as Google, to get you to the first page of results.
Among the factors used in SEO are:
- Blog articles (quality matters but also quantity)
- Product categories and labels
- Ease of use from mobile devices
- Links from other pages to the store
- User browsing time on the page
Unlike paid ads, it is a time consuming process (6-12 months) . It requires continuous improvement, testing, and site monitoring. But it can bring spectacular results. As we know from personal experience, we often choose the results of the first page of Google.