5 Things You Should Know Before Launching a Web-Based Store
In our modern world, everything is moving to the internet—especially businesses. Many retail stores operate completely online today; whether it’s glasses, clothing, or cars, you can get anything you need on the web. But if you aren’t a large corporate retailer, how do you go about creating your own online business? Here are some things to know before starting your own eCommerce business.
The Basics of eCommerce
If you’re looking to launch your own web-based business, the number of tasks involved in the process can be overwhelming. Ecommerce business works for small businesses because you don’t have to own a large inventory of products and wait for customers to buy up your stock. But this means you will need to be in contact with the wholesalers and manufacturers who produce the products you will be selling in your online store. As an eCommerce business owner, think of your website as the marketplace where your customers fill their shopping cart with customizable items.
Simplifying the Sales Process
In small business eCommerce, you play the role of go-between for customers with custom—and sometimes large—orders and a wholesaler, which requires you to pay extremely close attention to details. Configure One is a CPQ (configure, price, quote) company that offers an easy way to simplify communication within the sales process with its CPQ salesforce integrated sales cloud. They are considered leaders among CPQ solutions companies the world over, and their flagship software, Salesforce, is a staple among CRM (customer relationship management) companies.
Configure One has combined its world-renowned CPQ software with its Salesforce interface to streamline the flow of data between yourself, the customer and the vendor. Their CPQ system takes care of the entire sales-to-production process and their innovative configuration process allows you, the business owner, to offer your customers visualizations so they can see their product models, with any add-ons, in real-time. This allows customers to see their customized product clearly and basically eliminates product errors.
By pairing their powerful CPQ software workflow with the Salesforce sales cloud the flow of data becomes seamless between the two interfaces. There is no longer a need for dual-entry of information; as soon as changes are made price quotes and proposal documents in the CPQ software they are automatically imported and applied to sales opportunities in salesforce.
Market, Market, Market
In the age of the internet, there’s almost no limit to the number of ways in which you can market your business. One very popular method of marketing is email communication with customers. Whether it’s monthly newsletters or sale reminders, email can be a very effective means of contact your existing client-base.
Social media is a must for online marketing, but you already know this. Twitter, Instagram, Facebook—these are the most commonly used platforms, but it can also be effective to branch out. Finding individual bloggers whose content matches your industry or niche can help you directly meet potential customers who are looking for exactly what you’re offering.
Never underestimate the effectiveness of launching simple marketing campaigns from the jump. Get your company’s name on people’s screens and in their minds from the very beginning.
Figuring Out the Finances
Doing your own bookkeeping as a small business owner can be tedious and a bit daunting. There are several kinds of bookkeeping software available, like Quickbooks, but they only cover the basics of accounting tasks. Hiring a third-party eCommerce accountant or CPA may be out of your budget, and they still only handle specific accounting tasks, leaving you to figure out the rest of your financials.
Fully Accountable is a full-service eCommerce bookkeeping company for small business owners looking to outsource their financials. Their eCommerce accountant services can help business owners with their cash flow, payroll, budgeting, forecasting, and they’ve got you covered during tax time. Fully Accountable’s bookkeeping services are currently available to business owners in the United States and Canada. Their eCommerce accountants use state-of-the-art accounting software to record historical as well as day-to-day data and provide you with daily financial reports, which helps you streamline your business’ expenses.
Fully Accountable’s services are also customizable, meaning you pick the service package with what you need and nothing extra, which is another easy way to save your eCommerce business money. Their eCommerce accountants and bookkeepers specialize in several different forms of sales channel operations and industry niche solutions, making them a great choice for your small business.
Keep it Interesting
Website presentation and engagement are key to starting your business out on the right foot. Learn some of the basics of coding before the launch of your site. That way you can make any necessary changes based on the initial reaction to your website’s layout.
Be sure to also include additional resources to keep customers’ attention. Adding regular blog posts on related topics will keep people coming back. An “About Us” page is also crucial; customers want to get to know you and your company so they can be sure they’re spending their money in the right place. Make sure they know that they are.