So this pandemic is not looking like it will be over in the next couple of months, and perhaps ‘traditional shopping’ may not come back to the High Street as we know it.
Many companies are now looking more intently than ever at selling their products online, even if they had not done this before or have not seen this as a primary outlet, more just something that they needed to do. Whilst there are many options out there to allow you to quickly sell online, below are some of the things that you should keep in mind when making your choice.
Template Versus Your Choice
- Wix – Best overall ecommerce website builder.
- Shopify – Best ecommerce builder for large stores.
- BigCommerce – Best for fast-growing businesses.
- Squarespace – Best for brand-focused stores.
- Square Online – Best for sellers on a budget.
- Weebly – Best for entrepreneurs.
- Volusion – Best for tracking performance.
- 3dcart – Best for payment options.
- Big Cartel – Best for hobby stores.
The choice is huge but they all use a combination of themes, templates and pre-built elements which, if you use their great imagery or have your own, work well. However, if you want to go a bit more ‘off-piste’ shall we say, some are difficult to work on and others want a huge amount of money to make the changes for you.
Availability of Great Images (and not only for your products)
Do you have fantastic images to use as backgrounds, promotional panels and even, dare we say it, videos? If not, then you are probably better to use one of the above pre-built templates which come with a choice of imagery pre-designed to fit the themed template.
If you are lucky enough to already have professional photography then the world is your oyster in terms of choosing your own designs.
Do you have a product that needs to be in the market by a certain date – are you for example selling Valentine gifts, then you need your website up and running quickly. Then again a template based shop with a focused product range might be your best option.
How are you sending your goods to your customers? Seems obvious, but do you need to use registered post, a courier service, temperature controlled? Now is the time to start this part of your planning development as most of these are fully or in many cases overbooked for some time ahead. So sooner the better for this.
You have a website, you have the images, you have the products and you know how to ship them, so all you need to do now is to be paid. But who do you want to use? Choices range from Paypal with a higher percentage transaction charge but no monthly fee, through to Barlcaycard lower percentage transaction charges but with a monthly fee. The choice is really determined by how many transactions you expect to make each month.
One of the pieces of advice that we always give is “do you need to put absolutely every product online right now?” Not only can you save time in uploading information and putting together a category structure with a huge numbers of products, you can also spend more time focusing on great product descriptions and fantastic imagery. Many people still fall into the trap of thinking that more content is better, however in our opinion this not only limits your options of adding new products to keep your site fresh but, worst of all, can delay your ecommerce website going live and stop you from learning quickly what works and focusing on this.
Creatively Yours Ltd helps businesses like yours succeed online through website design, website development, and our Helponomics system that offers support and training as you need it and highlights areas that could increase your sales.