Today, the business of selling online has become very tempting as it now easier and cost-effective than ever before. There are many eCommerce platforms and marketplaces that provide a ready-made storefront, all you need to do is upload your listing and your are live. But, that is not the case- if you are planning to launch a niche eCommerce store. Choosing a platform is no doubt an important factor which determines the success for your online store, however there are other factors that need to consider – if you want to be better, different and more efficient than your competitors, to succeed.
In this article, we will discuss on important factors that you need to consider before launching your niche eCommerce store.
1 – Analyze your niche
You may assume that the products you select are niche to gauge customer interest. But, if you don’t analyze your products before the launch – you may end up choosing items that are sold by hundreds or even thousands of competitors which you realize after the launch. This will be the biggest blunder that you should avoid as you may end making few sales in a month or a year. Instead, analyzing your niche will help you reach maximum audience and make the best out of your products selling online.
For finding your niche, you need to ask yourself:
a – Will the keywords match customer’s search?
It becomes very important for you to ensure that your niche products would easily show up in customer’s search results. Consider using Google’s “Keyword Planner Tool” and prepare a list of keywords relevant to your niche. Then, select the one that you think would be relevant to the customer’s question and show at the top in the search rankings. When someone is looking for something online, that means they are showing interest. The chance of them getting converted into a sales lead is more.
Search online for the best selling products, analyze for the most unique ones to check customer’s interest and select the one that best fits your needs.
b – How unique is product?
Next you need to analyze how unique is your product? – in the world of online. For instance, if you sell one of those products that Amazon offers, less chances of people coming to your store. It’s not even worth thinking of competing them with price.
Research online and check for products that are less competitive but with high profit margins. Implement SEO tactics to show up in search results whenever the customers finds for your product online. This way whenever your product will show up in search results, maximum chances of them getting converted into sales.
c – How much profit margin can it generate?
Planning to launch a business without analyzing its profit margin makes no sense. Once you select your niche, it becomes equally important for you to ensure your business will churn out nothing less than 25% on lower price items. It suggested to target high-cost products that will help you generate high profit margins whenever a sales is made.
The above are things that you need to analyze while selecting your niche. Let’s take a look on the other important things that you need to keep in mind before launching your niche eCommerce store.
3 – Is your content relevant?
4 – How secure is a your payment gateway?
The whole concept behind launching your niche eCommerce store is to receive money in return for the products you offer. Therefore, it becomes very important you research on ways to accept money from your customers and to make payments transaction smoother and secured. If you are starting off with a small budget then using PayPal or WorldPay payment services are an ideal and trusted source, (they accept all card payments) but their main drawback – is they charge a 2.9% to 3.0% fee per transaction. So, if you have many sales order coming in every month, the payment transaction fee will prove to be expensive. In such cases, you have an alternate to start off with direct card payments.
For direct card payments, it is complicated in the outlay but at the same time will provide more credibility and make your store a trusted one in the world of online. First you need to conform that your site is SSL certified. This will then allow your site’s payment transaction go through a secure (HTTPS) path and protect you from online credit card fraud. This means you are responsible for customer’s credit card details as there will be no third party payment service involved. It may sound to much to do, but with the help of your developer I’m sure you should give it thought before launching your niche eCommerce store.
5 – Do you have a firm shipping management?
There is a good chance of your niche eCommerce store to receive multiple orders in a day. Therefore, it becomes crucial for you to have a firm management in shipping all orders accurately and safely to customers. Your customers will not like to wait for long to get their order, neither they would like to receive a damaged product. Any of these scenarios can directly affect the bottom line of your business.
Ensure you plan your shipping management and if you feel that things may get out of control, investing in a shipping management software solution will help you overcome those ugly scenarios. Also, many shipping software solutions offer shipping calculators that makes it easy to work out the cost of shipping accordance to the bundle of products selected in the cart. Having this functionality in your eCommerce shipping solution will help you reduce cart abandonment rates that mostly occurs due to high shipping costs.
6- Is your store mobile ready?
If you overlook the importance of a mobile, then you are leaving a huge amount of money on the table.
Today, more and more people are accessing online stores over their smartphones for making purchases. To take an advantage of this source, ensure your store has a responsive design that can automatically adjust the store’s layout and features when used over any device that allow an access to the Internet. Doing this you eliminate the need of creating another mobile or tablet site which means it will work on multiple devices and screen size.
7 – Do you have an SEO strategy in mind?
Simply building a website, uploading listings, adding content – is not enough in today’s competitive world of eCommerce. Instead, you’ll have to spend time and make it an effort to get your content, product and store out to customers who shop online.
Search engines are the leading source through which you can make your store easily available to online shoppers. It’s very important that you spend time in creating SEO tactics using keywords that will make your store stay up in search engines whenever a customers looks up for the product you offer.
8 – Do you have a pro active marketing strategy?
Playing with content becomes very important to divert sales and profit for your niche eCommerce store. Therefore, It is crucial you have a pro active marketing strategy in place. If you have a small budget, promoting your content in online forums, email marketing and social media will be an ideal, as it won’t cost you much. Create an account on social networking sites like “Facebook,” “LinkedIn” and start promoting your content. This way you can know how much response you are getting and what’s your target audience. Collecting such information is very helpful in your marketing strategy once you are up and live.
9 – Do you have a store management in place?
Now that you are going to sell your niche products out in the world of online, it is necessary that you plan out your store’s management. Initially when you receive few orders, it will seem easy to manage your store. However, when your store starts receiving hundreds or even thousands of orders things may go out of control. The best and effective solution is to have an eCommerce solution in place. There are many eCommerce software solution available in the market, so select one that best suits your need. This will reduce effort and cost of managing orders, customers, inventory – when done manually. Invest in one of the eCommerce solution and automate your back-end operations to successfully run your niche eCommerce store.
10- Do you have to have a tool to measure your website’s behavior?
You may have adopted the above 9 factors and your niche store is up and ready to go live. But, as soon as it goes live, it becomes equally important that you have a tool to measure your store’s behavior from day one. “Google Analytics” can be the best solution to measure your website’s behavior. This is important, as you need to identify the most profit making area as well as the less profit making area in order to bring effective changes to your niche eCommerce store as and when it grows.
Keeping in mind the above things you are ready to launch your niche eCommerce store. However, it is always suggested to constantly research on ways to bring in maximum automation in managing your store and effective SEO tactics to stay above in the search engines.