E-commerce sites are great because they allow small business owners to sell their wares online even if they do not have the budget of a large corporation. They allow people who don’t have money for opening up a physical store to get their products to the masses.
Of course, the quality of your e-commerce site is just as important to your business as the quality of your products is – if not more so. If you are struggling to generate sales and are not sure what to do, you might find some helpful tips by having a look at these five common mistakes that e-commerce site owners often make, which can hurt their sales, but can be easily avoided if you are aware of them.
Lazy and inaccurate search functions
Even if you are strapped for money, getting your search and filtering functions to be the best that they can be is something that is still worthy of an investment. Having a detailed search function and allowing your potential customers to easily find exactly what they are looking for is key. If your visitors have to scroll through dozens of unrelated products, there is a good chance that they will leave your site and start looking elsewhere before stumbling upon the product that they were searching for at your site.
Inventory that is not up-to-date
A lot of people who own e-commerce sites wrongly believe that they should continue to list a product that is out of stock as being in stock, just because they plan on restocking it sooner or later. This is not a good strategy. There is nothing more aggravating to a customer than finding a product that is listed as being in stock, ordering it, and then receiving a notification that it is actually not in stock. If your product is out of stock, list it that way, and then update its status once you have restocked it.
Low-quality product images
The biggest advantage that a physical store has over an online store is that people can see a product with their own eyes and hold it in their hands. In order to make up for this disadvantage, you need to provide the best possible visualizations of your products. Make sure to have high quality pictures that show your products in detail, especially if it the way that it looks is the product’s main selling point (clothes, shoes, household decorations, for example). Making a video for the product so that the customers could see it in a more of a “live” setting is a good idea as well.
Poor customer service
A small e-commerce site lives and dies by its reputation and its buyer loyalty. If you are not responding to your customers’ questions and issues in a timely or adequate manner, not only will you lose them, but you will gain a bad reputation quickly. E-commerce is a highly competitive business world and if you are not respecting your customers, they will quickly find an alternative online store and spend their money elsewhere.
It is clear to everyone involved in Internet marketing and commerce that gathering information on your clients and being able to stay in contact with them is very important, but forcing buyers to register with your site can only hurt your sales in the long run. Some people just want to find what they are looking for, present their shipping and payment information swiftly, and get their products. If you are providing a great service and your products are top notch, people will want to register with you and receive updates on your products and services via email, but forcing potential buyers to submit personal information that they would not want to submit on their own in order to buy a product will do nothing but deter potential customers.
Succeeding in a market that is as saturated as e-commerce has become is already difficult on its own, but avoiding these common mistakes should be able to get you on the right track and stop you from hurting your business before it has even had a chance to succeed.
About Author: David Lazar is a regular blogger at PDF Converter blog. With a background in journalism, he specializes in writing blogs on a variety of topics, including freelancing, careers, finances, technology and new media.